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tv   Washington Journal 08252021  CSPAN  August 25, 2021 6:59am-10:03am EDT

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>> c-span is your unfiltered view of government. we are funded by these television companies and more including comcast. >> you think this is just a community center? it's way more than that. >> comcast is partnering with 1000 committee centers to create wi-fi enabled location so families can be ready for anything. >> comcast support c-span is a public service along with these other television providers, giving you a front row seat to democracy. >> coming up, representatives chrissy houlahan and don bacon
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discussed the house legislative agenda as well as the latest on afghanistan. later, the recent events in kabul and the future of afghanistan. "washington journal" is next. host: good morning from capitol hill on this wednesday, august 25. we will get your reaction to all the news coming out of washington this morning and we will begin with the politico line this morning, the house yesterday advancing that $3.5 trillion budget blueprint, ending the stalemate. business insider, president biden sticking to the august 30 one deadline for afghanistan and evacuation's as the taliban warns of consequences. the supreme court yesterday
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reinstates president trump's remain in mexico policy. and "the washington post," president biden received inconclusive intelligence, reports on the covid origin. and "wall street journal," house passes the john lewis bill, voting rights legislation, along with that budget blueprint yesterday. republicans, (202) 748-8001. democrats, (202) 748-8000. independents, (202) 748-8002. text with first name, city, and state t (202) 748-8003. or join us on facebook.com/ c-span or on twitter using @cspanwj. we will be joined by lawmakers today are the house passing that
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$3.5 trillion budget blueprint yesterday. the president, from the white house, hailed passage of it. [video clip] pres. biden: we are closer to positioning our economy for long-term growth and building in america that out competes the rest of the world. my goal is to build an economy from the bottom up and the middle out, not just the top down. that is what we are on our way to doing. i want to thank speaker pelosi, who was masterful in her leadership on this, and later hoyer, clyburn, and german defazio, the entire team -- chairman defazio, and the entire team for their hard work and determination to bring people together to make a difference. i also want to thank every democrat in the house who worked so hard to reach an agreement. supported the process for house consideration of the jobs and
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infrastructure plan, build back better, and there were differences, strong points of view, and they are always welcome. what is important is that we came together to advance our agenda. host: the president yesterday. there is more work to be done. now the house and senate have to come together and make this an actual bill that can pass the house and the senate with 51 votes. that work still to be done. centrist democrats were given a promise that september 27, the house will vote on the so-called hard infrastructure bill that was passed in the senate with bipartisan support. republicans give their argument again on this and the economic impact they think it will have. here is steve scalise of louisiana. [video clip] >> this package of bills that includes a budget that i am sure
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very few people in this chamber have read that authorizes the taxing and spending of trillions more dollars. what does that mean? they call it the for the children act. it should be called the mountains of debt for the children act, because that is what it does. if you look at inflation today -- every family in america is facing inflation, paying over 40% more for gasoline, cars, things they purchase at the grocery store would families know that if you add trillions more debt, trillions more spending, trillions more in taxes, inflation will only go up. and you know who is going to pay for it? not anybody in this chamber. under their own budget, it says it, it is the children. that is who is going to pay for it. right here. just go to page seven, where it authorizes up to $45 trillion in debt. we are at about $28.6 trillion
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right now. $45 trillion in debt, taxes and spending through the roof that will hit every family in america. host: republican steve scalise yesterday on the floor criticizing this legislation. you can talk about that, what happened in the house yesterday. you can also talk about afghanistan and in the other public wallace the issue in our open forum this morning. vivian in tennessee, democratic caller. caller: good morning. i was calling about the democrats. they have control of the house and the senate. they need to get together and pass these bills. quit arguing among each other. the republicans are sticking together. republicans are voting against everything helping the american people. i don't understand. they have constituents in states that are poor. and then with afghanistan, it is
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time to come out. look at the money and the lives lost over there. that money they use over there, america could be using that money now, older people on social security, childcare, student loans it all that money could have been used here in america. just like they said, make the rich pay their fair share of taxes. i am sick and tired of republicans saying they are going to raise your taxes, the ordinary people. no, america, it is the big companies that need to pay their share. and then the crime going on here, people killing america -- killing each other everyday. we don't hear anyone saying anything about it. people dying every day up in memphis. the republican senators and congresspeople are not saying anything. wake up, america. democrats, get your stuff together. stick together like the
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republicans. thank you. host: on your last point about democrats, the hill newspaper notes that democrats need to show americans that they can govern, and they say policy goals, though, in that 3.5 trillion dollar package, the blueprint come are going to be difficult. democratic said writing the legislative text for some of the components in the bill, such as changes to medicare benefits, will be relatively easy to do since those programs already exist. but policy goals such as crating a new universal childcare program will be much more challenging to craft because you have nothing structurally to use to implement it. so those will be much more difficult to do. pelosi is asking me to begin working on the relevant parts of the gigantic spending package and report back by september 15, and the panel will then package everything together and prepare for a floor vote when the chamber is scheduled to return to washington in late september.
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it remains for us to work together, work with the senate, to writable that preserves the privilege of 51 votes in the senate. we must work together to do that in a way that passes the house and passes the senate, and we must do so expeditiously. margie in leavenworth, kansas, democratic caller. caller: hi, good morning. i lived in chicago for 40 years, and i sure miss it. but i tell you, the one good thing -- 71, had cancer -- you learn to be a bit more charitable. now the food stamps help the most, because once you have had a health problem, you cannot get back on your feet. steve scalise, he should be grateful for all the care that people worried about him once he got shot, even democrats.
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so instead of dividing up, just look around, what you can do in a circle. if you get some extra food, you share it. and if people would give up cigarettes -- you know, people are human. they do what they do. but i tell you, it is a rough world. california is burning. we are in a five-day heat wave again. and it is very, very hard to live like that, that hot. it really decreases you. and if you try to do environmental things, like not have a car, you need public transportation. there is terrible suffering. defense contractors made a bundle in afghanistan, jesus. what some people did in another country, you know? so it is kind of scary.
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it is like people will keep fighting not to be at the helm, and they will read on the internet and see something the russians might have put out and then not get their vaccine. it is very scary. host: on afghanistan, patrick, a republican in maryland, texts us to say, since when does america take orders from the taliban? since when do they dictate to us? shameful. new reporting now that 19,000 people were evacuated from afghanistan in the 24 hours between 3:00 a.m. yesterday and 3:00 a.m. today. we have now evacuated 82,300 people since august 14 and 87,900 since july. cnn reported those numbers this morning. listen to the president
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yesterday talking about why he is not extending that august 31 deadline. [video clip] pres. biden: first, on a evacuation, we will continue our close cooperation to get people out as efficiently and safely as possible. we are currently on a pace to finish by august 31. the sooner we can finish, the better. each day of operations brings added risks to our troops. but the completion by august 31 pence upon the taliban continuing to cooperate and allow access to the airport for those who we are transporting out. no disruptions to our operation. in addition, i have asked the pentagon and the state department for -- to continuously plan to adjust the timetable should that become necessary. i am determined that we complete our mission, this mission. i am also mindful of the increasing risks that i have been briefed on and the need to
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factor those risks in. they are real, significant challenges that we also have to take into consideration. the longer we stay, there is the acute and growing risk of an attack by a terrorist group known as isis-k, a sworn enemy of the taliban, as well paired every day on the ground is another day we know isis-k is targeting the airport and attacking both u.s. and allied forces and innocent civilians. host: president biden on why he will stick to that august 31 deadline. listen to reaction from capitol hill yesterday by republicans. here is the leader for the party in the house, kevin mccarthy of california. [video clip] >> i am less confident after leaving that briefing. there is no possible way that we can get every american that is still in afghanistan out in the next seven days.
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we are just three weeks away from the 20th anniversary of 9/11. at no time should america ever bend or allow the taliban to tell us when we have to stop bringing americans out. we should stay and tell every single american is able to get out of afghanistan. we should use every recourse possible to make that happen. we should not negotiate it. we should explain that this is what is going to happen, and anybody in our way to stop us from bringing americans out will be in danger. host: the republican leader from yesterday. now we turn to all of you in this open forum, your reaction to what has been happening in washington. john in bridgewater, new jersey, republican. good morning. caller: good morning. how are you? host: i am fine. caller: good. it is foul.
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it is hard to watch biden try to defend his position. i think he miscalculated very badly on afghanistan. actually, it was not a major issue until it became a major issue. and i think he created that and did not really realize what he was doing. on the other issues, on the infrastructure bill, i would like to see that pass. the other $3 trillion -- that is amazing numbers. i do not think anyone can conceive of those numbers. that is a problem. however, the two dangers to me are the voting rights bill, which would undercut the states, and since the constitution was crafted, to control elections.
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and the real issue that no one is looking at, frankly, is zoning. democrats want to destroy every zoning at in america. that is the real problem, long-term, for the regular people. thank you. host: on the voting rights bill, the wall street journal writes, the bill, which passed 219-212, faces difficult path to pass through the senate. there is a push that republicans criticize as federal overreach, a measure that cleared the house in march before stalling in the senate cuts -- cuts almost every
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aspect in the election process, including voter id rights, voting by mail, or an absentee basis for any reason. democrats are pushing the new bill to give the federal government power to oversee state procedures after a pair of supreme court rulings weakened the voting rights act. an earlier version of the john lewis bill drew the support of just one republican, senator lisa murkowski of alaska, making its package unlikely. a call from sioux city, iowa, democratic caller. it is your turn. welcome to the conversation. caller: hi, i was wondering about the financing that the taliban has. a congresswoman was interviewed
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yesterday, i think on cnn, and said most of their funds, where they came from, are in u.s. banks. and if that is so, i would think it would give us some leverage over the taliban, if we hold whatever funds they would have available to them. host: ok. john in pennsylvania, good morning. what is on your mind? caller: yeah, thanks for having me. good to see the coward and chief showing his true colors yesterday and the announcement to the american people, trying to read of the teleprompter and not taking questions because he is a coward. i wish the democrats, with these bills down their throat, like the fixed election, trying to fix future elections so we will never have a republican elected for anything -- why don't they
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try to be tougher with the taliban? joe biden said he is going to stick to his timeline. no, he isn't sticking to his timeline. the taliban is telling him when they can evacuate and get those people out of there. like i said, i wish we would turn around and start voting republican more, because these liberals are going to wind up and gripping the country. spending billions of trillions of dollars in afghanistan, and now they want more money. they're like a bunch of rich children that just have to have their way, one after the other. that is my point. host: a call -- a text from massachusetts, any updates from congressman seth moulton? he is referring to this headline, representative seth moulton vincent's -- visits kabul amid evacuation.
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two veterans visited couple on tuesday during evacuation efforts. why it matters, they had not previously announced their trip, but they said as congress members they had a duty to provide oversight on the executive branch. the state department and u.s. military personnel had to divert resources to provide security and information to the lawmakers. there is criticism for taking this trip. you can read their joint statement on twitter. you can read it in its entirety. jeanie in liverpool, new york -- we lost her. randy in louisiana, an independent. what is on your mind? caller: good morning. you look beautiful this morning. i just want to say that -- well, i want to talk about afghanistan. but the democrats and republicans, the american people have been had by the democrats
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and republicans. they the same party, they just play off each other. but let's go back to afghanistan. these people had plenty of time. the writing was on the wall. these people had plenty of time to get out. i am just playing devils advocate. but what i am getting at is, you probably do not remember paul harvey, but he had a story one day about the british, i think back in the 1800's may be, the british went in to conquer afghanistan, i guess after they conquered everybody else. well, they let one person leave afghanistan, and the reason they let this british soldier leave, they told him, don't come back until everybody else don't come back. these people will fight to the death. in there is no way you're going
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to conquer them -- and there is no way you are going to conquer them. and the afghan army, say this army person was 20 years old. well, from that age to 20, he had to live under taliban rule. back in the back of his mind and his psyche is when the americans left, he was scared to death. i would be, too, because the taliban is going to take over again. nobody can conquer the taliban. they went in there for resources, the bush's went in there for resources, and everybody down the line, except for trump, and that is why they didn't like trump. because everybody was making money. host: so you agreed with president trump's decision to withdraw and make the deal with the taliban?
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caller: yeah, and i agree with biden. but they should have gone the people at first, then the military. they were showing crates of money, arms, and billions of dollars of military equipment. host: ok. this is from mary in florida, the u.s. listens to taliban, she writes, since trump, the former president, made a deal with them. let's look at this moment from just moments ago, looks like the vice president on an overseas trip, lays flowers at the memorial where john mccain's plane was shot down. " he was an extraordinary american, a hero. he loved their country. he was so courageous and really lived the life of a hero, always fought for the best of who we are."
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david in new york, an independent. good morning to you. caller: good morning, everyone. born and raised in another country, been in the u.s. for nearly 40 years, have a good understanding for what is going on in the region. as painful as it is, it is good to withdraw and be able to really cut our losses and try to control financial and human life loss in afghanistan. having said that though, we have to certainly make sure that we do not wind up being on either side of the shiite-sunni divide. both sects really require for the people in that region to be able to reform that religion that has been left for them from 1400 years ago. that may require us to provide
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our american ideals of equality, equity, transparency, accountability, and other liberal ideals, and along with it competitive and not predatory capitalism, and to be able to go into partnership. having said that though, it seems like military adventurism is really obsolete now, and the idea would be to really negotiate or critically engage anywhere in the world, including the middle east, but not to be in the middle of it, rather than trying to just allow our own ideas to take root in that region. if it is good for goose, and must be good for the gander. and that is the bottom line. host: tracy in oregon, republican. caller: hi, and thank you for taking my call.
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i am really shocked and appalled at what this president has done. yes, we did need to get out of afghanistan. i do agree with that. but not in the way he did it. and they have been asking all week, what is the bottleneck? what is the problem? who is holding everything up? i can tell you what the bottleneck is and what the problem is, it is the state department. first they were asking people to pay $2000 to come, which is wrong. you do not leave people behind. americans or the friends that helped us. that is not who we are. you just don't leave them like this. and somebody needs to fire these people at the state department. that is where the bottleneck is. with all the checkpoints, it is the state department that is turning people away. and they need to be fired for this and need to be held
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accountable. and they are not reporting this. i do not think biden knows this, but even if he did, i do not think he would change his mind. it is shameful and appalling what is happening. i agreed with trump that we needed to leave but not like this. host: a call from floyd, kentucky, a democratic caller. caller: i think the president is getting bad advice. i think he should have done it like bill clinton, put zones all around it and said if you come in any closer, we're going to take you out. and that is what should have been done all alone. all along. [indiscernible] i think he should have done it like that. host: stephen in michigan says he watched the house debate on the three pieces of legislation yesterday. i was really surprised the republicans kept changing the subject to afghanistan instead
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of debating the bill at hand. these people are supposed to be working for all people. obstructing delay instead of trying to do their job. bill in springfield, illinois, on our line for democrats. caller: good morning. i have a few points to say about afghanistan. but is it ok if i wish a happy birthday to a dear friend, a legend? i am giving him an early birthday. he turns 80 on october 9. host: ok. he will love it. caller: i would love to call him, but we have 30 days, and you can wait -- you cannot always get through. there is a professor who documents out of the 245 years
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that we have been a country, we have not been at war, all but 11 years. there was a warning about the military-industrial complex, and the people who benefited from this war and other words our defense companies, like lockheed martin. over the last 20 years, they made over 1236% on their star, just like general dynamics made over 600%, boeing made nearly 500%. so people benefit when we go to war, and that is the cost. from listening to military people, defense people who are on the board of these companies. that is point number one. point number two is when we went to war, we went up against the taliban. this is the majority of people living in afghanistan, about 40 million, and delete 20 million
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people -- nearly 20 million people of them -- we established a government in kabul, a minority with that population, and it is like china coming into this country, liberating this country, and putting hispanics and minorities in the washington, d.c. over 50% of people living in america are white. we're always going to fight against the chinese government. it is not surprising that the question -- that these people are voting against the central government. we worry about the girls and the women. we protect the girls and the women from kabul, but when we bombed the taliban, we are
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bombing the women and children and the elderly there. that is why we are worried about them. we should give the $10 billion that the united states has as defense money to them so they can use it. our values -- [indiscernible] there is no financing being provided to afghanistan. we're going to create more enemies and push them towards that. host: on the vaccine, from local reporting this morning, the cdc, according to new reports, says vaccine efficacy is dropping. 91% in april, now 66%. on that note, ken in tampa, florida, with this text. my wife and i are praying for both our children who contacted covid-19 from school here in
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florida, all because of politics and lies. we're going to keep the conversation rolling about what is happening here in washington. next, we will be joined by two members of congress for a discussion on the budget and infrastructure and the latest in afghanistan. first up, congresswoman chrissy houlahan of pennsylvania. later, representative don bacon of nebraska. we will be right back. ♪ >> the population of china in 1949 when the communists took control was 540 million people. during these 72 years, the prc has had five principal leaders. since 2012, the current head of state, xi jinping.
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george washington university professor has written close to 30 books devoted to the subject of asia. we talk with the professor about his newest book titled "china's leaders, from mao to now." >> listen at c-span.org/ podcasts. ♪
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>> "washington journal" continues. host: we're joined by congresswoman chrissy houlahan, democrat of pennsylvania, a veteran and member of the arms services foreign affairs committee. congresswoman, what is your confidence level that the u.s. can get everyone out of afghanistan that we want to get out by august 31? guest: i would assess that as being pretty low. i think if you do the math, just simple math, about how many people we need to be successful at extracting our own people or those who have helped us, we are not able to accomplish that number of people. i am less than optimistic about that particular date certain. host: what have you heard from the administration about the effort and the way we we withdrew from the country? guest: we had a bipartisan classified briefing with a lot
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of the different administration officials who you would expect to be in the room. effectively, what i am hearing is that we are making progress in the sense that we're escalating the number of people that successfully get out every day. it increases, and that is good news. but i do think it is worrisome, we probably will not be able to accomplish the mission of leaving no one behind with the timeline we have. i think the atmosphere and the mood in the meeting was one of encouraging the president to reconsider that date. host: what were you told about the withdrawal, and do you buy the argument that no matter how it was done, there would have been chaos? guest: i do not think that i necessarily buy that argument specifically. i do think that this is obviously a difficult progress, and one of the things we need to consider bipartisanally as a
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nation is this is dangerous work going on in afghanistan. but as an industrial engineer myself, there was probably a better way we could have managed this, so i think we probably are singing a less than optimal rollout of getting people out of afghanistan. host: what do you know about where these afghans will go in our country? how will they be relocated? guest: that was part of the conversation and has been part of the information we have received. there are a couple dozen countries partnered with us that are helping us move and position folks we are moving out of afghanistan at various locations globally, as they become documented and fingerprinted, etc. and then they are coming to a handful of places in the united states at this point of time, but needing to grow. there are other parts of the
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nation they need to move to. host:host: is -- host: is legislation needed by congress? guest: they did not ask for additional help from congress? certainly, congress stands ready to be helpful wherever needed. host: what are you being told about how these people are vetted? guest: they did talk a bit but not in great detail about the biometrics being taken and about the processing that is happening, including health processing, as well, but they did not go into any great detail in this briefing. host: do you know what happens once they are brought to the united states and are positioned at these bases? how do they begin their new life. guest: there are in geo's -- ngo 's and nonprofits in our country, and the state department is working with them to allow local governments and
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local people to reach out to those who do not necessarily already have a place to be, to begin the process of assimilating them into this nation. there are people already under her under siv, special immigrant status, and there are some people who have never been in this nation but some that have been. host: what worries you, congresswoman, given your expense in the armed services? what worries you about this whole situation? guest: i worry about the delicate balance of making sure we keep our troops there and doing a difficult job safe, and making sure we uphold our word and that we leave no one behind. that is a very delicate balance that i worry about every single minute of the day. host: who are you talking to about this worry, and what are you hearing back? guest: i am fortunate enough to be part of this congress that has quite a few veterans in the
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congress. relatively speaking, many of them are new, so we have a little cadre that i communicate with. i am on the armed services committee and foreign affairs committee, and we're having several different meetings just today alone on this issue where we are able to ask questions of the administration and people who are involved in this day to day. host: so you're getting additional briefings because of your committee assignments? guest: exactly. today specifically, there will be several briefings i will participate in. host: we want everyone to be able to join in on the conversation. you can dial in, republicans, (202) 748-8001. democrats, (202) 748-8000. independents, (202) 748-8002. text us with first name, city, and state to (202) 748-8003. afghan veterans, a line for you this morning, (202) 748-8003.
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list talk about the vote on the budget blueprint. how did you vote and why? guest: i voted yes. it is wonky and procedural, but this vote was to move forward on several pieces of legislation, one being infrastructure, one being voting rights, and the other being the budget process. so we are moving forward on all of those on three separate tracks, and we voted to pass the john lewis voting rights act. i believe it is time to move forward on these pieces of legislation. i believe if the vote came to the floor for the infrastructure bill, i would enthusiastically vote for that. i think we are in a budget process where we need to be moving forward. i am on the small business committee, and we need to figure out where yes it is for everyone, both in the house and senate. that is why i voted yes. host: explain to our viewers why there is more work to be done on that $3.5 trillion -- some
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people call an ideas proposal. guest: it is basically the senate, and we have set what amounts the top line, can be no more than that amount of money. i personally hope it is not that amount of money and ends up being somewhat south of that or less than that, because i believe there will need to be compromises to happen for both the house and senate to be there. each one of our committees now has marching orders for how they will move forward and with what amount of access to capital, and the wound -- and we are then putting together pieces of legislation in committees that will move forward for a vote in the house floor. that will be a weeks long effort. i will begin that in the small business committee in the early september timeframe. host: when are you hearing that he will take a vote on a final piece of legislation? guest: that is unclear. i would expect a matter of weeks at a minimum. there are many moving pieces, many different committees and subcommittees that are part of the process.
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there is an interest in making sure that whatever the house puts together also has senate support. this is only an exercise if we are not really moving forward on legislation that can be supported and signed by the president into law. host: do you think that that vote on the $3.5 trillion budget happens before the vote on the 1.2 truly dollar infrastructure? -- one point two truly dollar infrastructure? guest: that is unclear and probably unlikely. with the compromise, it was that we would vote regardless of the infrastructure bill before the end of september. i would be surprised if we would be able to get through all the budgeting process within the next several weeks, given that we will not be back in session until another week or so from now. host: congresswoman chrissy houlahan serving her second term in congress, represents the sixth district and the pennsylvania. greg in arlington, texas, texts us -- how many people do you
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think are left in afghanistan? where do you get that number? and says, president biden extended the departure date the taliban established with former president trump. why didn't we make preparations to leave by the end of the month? guest: these are really good questions, and unfortunately the answers are pretty murky. i do not think we all know exactly how many people are left to remove from afghanistan. that is part of the problem. as an example, i have an office here in washington. we have received about 70 calls from various people, none of whom are american citizens, requesting our help, but it is possible they are also contacting other offices, and we are working on a fairly rudimentary system, google docs and spreadsheets, to track this. that leaves opportunity for murkiness, for us to be not clear whether we are counting
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our double counting everybody. that is a system, frankly, that i, as someone who has come out of industry and worked with databases, really needs to make sure we are not working at cross purposes with one another. and why weren't we better prepared or why wasn't this rolled out differently, i think those are good questions, too, and i look forward to asking those in the various committee hearings we will be having where we are able to perform our mission as a congress, which is that of oversight. i think they are fair questions but right now, we need to be focused on that we're making sure to safely get people out of the country and that we are thinking about the safety of our own troops. host: stephen in louisville, kentucky, democratic caller. caller: how are you this morning? guest: i am well. thank you. caller: thank you. i have a couple things to say about this. i want to just mention this, because i hear a lot of these people who want to go off and
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blame biden for all of this mess. i just want to remind people, first and foremost, this deal was done in may of 2020 under the trump administration. trump was the one, mr. big shot up there, thought he could negotiate with the taliban. i do not know how anybody on earth would believe that you can negotiate with a terrorist? these people plotted for our demise in this country. that is number one. number two, i also want to point out the fact that -- how many terrorists win because of this damn deal? and it is because of trump, he enabled putin to put taliban bounties on the heads of our service people. this amounts to treason, as far as i am concerned. i want to also say that this administration, i have had issues with them at times, but they did warn the afghan
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citizens to vacate in early february, from what i gathered. so this is not just something that came out of the blue. and also, congresswoman, what i do not understand, quite frankly, i actually think there are some positives and negatives here, but the thing that really gets me about this is we have been over there for 20 years. we train to the afghan soldiers to fight on their own. and the fact is, obviously, they had no inclination to fight for them selves. what kills me about this is we need to focus on fighting terrorism here. we need a federal law that both democrats and republicans can get on board with and ban domestic terrorism here, to be a guiding light. host: let's have the congresswoman respond. guest: there is a lot to unpack there, and i think there is a
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lot of blame to be had everywhere. this is a 20-year process we have experienced as a nation together, and i would be remiss not to back up a little bit and say, first of all, thank you to the tens of thousands of veterans who served and served valiantly and nobly in afghanistan, and your service is very appreciated. it has taken as 20 years to get here, and the conversation over the past week, days, and ours, those are conversations we need to have. there is plenty of unpacking and blaming to do. i think that it is important to make sure that we remark on and observe the great service that has come before us, that the 70,000 or 80,000 veterans have done. host: nancy in garden grove, california, republican. caller: thank you for taking my
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call. i appreciate representative houlahan coming on and thank her for her service. my concern with stephen, i just wanted to point out real quickly, that when he says trump was negotiating with the taliban , so is the biden administration, and it is really about the money. people go over to these countries and make millions of dollars off of us. but my point i was calling about is with the voting, john lewis voting legislation coming up, i don't understand why the democrats are trying to take states' rights away for the voting. i hope the supreme court overturns it if you do put it in, for the fact that it is 2021, and how can you say people do not know how to go get a photo id and register to vote?
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is representative houlahan for voter id? guest: thanks, nancy, i really appreciate your call. i think the important distinction with the john lewis voting rights is that this is on federal elections, and there really has been, historically, issues in various places and at various times in protecting and defending our most sacred right to vote, to access the ballot. so i think that this is a very important piece of legislation that builds on the legacy of other similar voting rights legislation, and i was very proud to support that piece of legislation. i come from the state of pennsylvania, and there is a very robust conversation going on there about what is and isn't an appropriate way to approach the ballot and approach the polls, and i leave that decision to the body in pennsylvania to make the decision. but i really do appreciate the conversation, both from
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republicans and democrats, because i think we all agree that it is so important that we have access to the ballot and that we have the sacred right to access the ballot. host: a text following up, from a viewer in ohio. he wants to know, what voting rights are included in the john lewis voting rights and what are not? what are the measures to prevent illegal voting and fraud? guest: this is a piece of legislation that sort of opens -- that immense pass legislation, and it talks about whether or not there is a marked history in a particular state or area, voter suppression, that there is the opportunity to go in and investigate and unwind that. that is largely what this legislation is talking about. there is an accompany piece of legislation, hr1, which folks are talking about, too, s1, the
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for the people bill, and that has more in it about how we vote, when we vote, those things. that is moving over to the senate right now for compromise negotiation, and i am hopefully we get that, too. host: liam in atlanta -- lynn in atlanta, democratic caller. caller: hi, representative houlahan. the young lady that was speaking earlier, she said she felt that the states should be responsible for our voting rights. that is the problem. a lot of the states are very republican and are against putting certain laws into place when it comes to people of color. so the federal government should have their hands in that.
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simply because those states are even talking about -- i'm sorry, i'm sorry, i am getting confused and little bit because some people stole my thunder -- but even the states who are claiming that they were fraudulent votes this past election, so, no, they don't need to have authority. and another thing about afghanistan, we are so worried about them, and don't get me wrong, i, too, are worried. their people. but the thing is, they are going to come over here in the states, and they're going to get better rates than we have. we are always fighting for rights, and they are going to get loans to buy homes and open businesses and send their kids to good schools. meanwhile, we, people of color,
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are still struggling to do some of those things. host: ok, thanks for calling in. guest: what i would say, first off, i agree that there is a real strong and appropriate tension between the states and the federal government in terms of who has what responsibilities and when, and we need to be bipartisan in protecting that sacred right to vote. in terms of afghanistan and the people we are bringing over here, we do need to remember that these people have, in many cases, saved our lives, the lives of our soldiers, and the way of life in the past 20 years per we have not had a terrorist attack of that kind since 9/11. what it means when they come to this nation, just like every other immigrant experience, we need to embrace them. my father was an immigrant, came here as a five-year-old with nothing, and was able to survey 30-something you're in the navy.
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-- 30-something year career in the navy. so i think of how generous and graceful this country can be to everyone, so i look forward to this next immigration of immigrants and refugees who come and contribute in the same way that my dad has. host: a call from tallahassee, florida, independent. caller: good morning. anyway, long story short, as far as the afghan army running away, that is not really true. people do not seem to understand that americans -- over 400,000 americans died there in 20 years , and something like 50,000 have died that are afghan military. people do not seem to understand that. two, obama, 2014 or whatever, when the russians were trying to hack our stuff, said the good thing was that we do not have
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national voting laws, that they were individual state laws, because that way they cannot hack the whole thing, maybe just one state or one district. also, as part of the constitution, it is not an assumption, it is part of the constitution that the states are independent to do what they want. as far as these bills. well, i remember in the obama administration, when he got all this money for infrastructure and said, oh, sorry, they are not shovel ready. so where did that money go? number two, as far as the hr1 and this other stuff, the voting rights thing is about not having any id, and that does not work. so that is not good. the other thing is that -- host: i am going to jump in
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because we have limited time with the congresswoman. guest: i am trying to follow with the question was would you be able to help me with the question? host: i think the first part was about, were is the money going? -- where is the money going? i did not follow paired we can go to the voter id. what is your reaction to that? guest: i think that it is important that the states take responsibility for voting rights , and i do think that there have been many states, my own included, where there has been a disingenuous effort at creating legislation that i think directly, deliberately makes it more difficult for people to vote, rather than something that is accessible to all. i think that this is a very complicated and nuanced conversation, and i wish we
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could just all shed our partisan armor on this and just all agree that it is very important that everybody have an opportunity to vote. not every four years but twice every year, really important, all the way from school board to president of the united states. i get very frustrated that we are not able to sort of dropped all of the posturing and realize that that is the fundamental thing we should be protecting. host: conrad in philadelphia, republican caller. caller: i have a couple questions, two about the voting situation. i do not understand why my party, republican party, is thinking that the elections were stolen from our president. every elected republican from the united states won. the only one that did not is donald trump. so the party was part of it. they agreed to do a down ballot
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on donald trump. how is it that every republican won every state, and donald trump was the only one that did not win? so nothing was stolen. republicans and democrats, they all are buddies. everybody thinks they are against each other. they are not. on infrastructure, why is it every time that the citizens of the united states needs something for our roads and bridges, the republicans are saying it is too much money? it was not too much money to give afghanistan, what, $5 billion, $10 billion over 20 years? they say they have the money in the bank that they do not want the taliban to get, so why don't they take that money and put it in our infrastructure program? maybe that will help us a little. guest: hi, antiwhite. -- and thank you. hi in philadelphia.
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i think it is remarkable that we're still having conversations about the election and its integrity and outcome. pennsylvania is a great example of that. we have 18 members of congress, nine democrats, nine republicans. all nine republicans were sworn in and believe the election results that were for them are valid. eight of them disagreed with the results of the election for the president, which would really be counterintuitive. it would mean that somehow their votes counted the votes for the president didn't across the state of pennsylvania. to me, that is indicative of this conversation that this election was stolen. in terms of infrastructure and dollars that we are spending, i think that is a reflection of our national values, and they ought to be in building our economy and our infrastructure and making sure we have bridges and tunnels and broadband. but also that we have child
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care, elder care, health care. those are our national values, i believe. independent of whether you are a democrat or republican. i am looking forward to the continuation of this administration and the continuation of moving forward legislation in the infrastructure bill. i appreciate your call. host: what is your reaction to this headline, gop lawmakers in your state, at the state legislature level, plan to launch hearings on the 2020 vote? guest: this is the kind of thing that exasperates the american public. we need to move on and move forward. this election has been adjudicated dozens of times, and it has been refuted and disputed so many times, and successfully. the president of the united states, and we need to move forward and support that mentoring chief, and we need to
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make sure we're supporting our nation as we struggle with this host: miriam, virginia, republican. caller: thank you for your service. i am the way a veteran. this past week, sorry if i get emotional, has been really hard to watch unfold on tv. i have had lots of friends whose husbands have gone, a lot of people who have died. i was wondering how you and the biden administration can look us in the eye and how can you explain that this was the best way forward in afghanistan? i want you to see that with 9/11 coming up next month, it looks to us that this is the way that biden and the administration wanted to use this as political grandstanding.
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you see how that could be seen as grandstanding by common people? guest: i feel the pain in your voice. i understand and share your pain. i am sure that you and your husband and the generations of people who have served in afghanistan are feeling conflicted. i am the daughter of a career navy veteran who was a vietnam veteran and the granddaughter of a korean war veteran. i understand the pain that you must be experiencing. i think it is a good question. was there a magic to september 11? do we need to move the way that we moved? do we need to signal the date? those are all fair questions. it is my job to ask those questions. host: congresswoman, we thank you for your time.
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we will take a short break. women comeback, another veteran be joining us from congress -- when we come back don bacon. later, joining us from kabul, a lecturer at the american university of afghanistan is going to discuss why he has decided to stay in the country. we will be right back. ♪ >> sunday, a conversation with
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karen tell multi-on her book on nancy reagan. >> she had one agenda, which was ronald reagan's well-being and success. she had that her instincts about people than he did. a better nose for trouble than he did. the people in the administration who understood all this, who recognized her power, people like the secretary of state or the white house chief of staff, really understood that she was a very important, crucial ally if you are trying to get ronald reagan on board. karen tumulty's biography sunday night on c-span's q and a. ♪
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>> students, your opinion matters. to that your voices be heard, be part of the national conversation i creating a documentary that answers the question, how is that federal government impact your life? c-span's student cam competition has $100,000 in total prices. entries will begin to be received wednesday, september 8. for more information, visit our website at studentscam.org. ♪ weekends on c-span two are an intellectual feast. every saturday, you will find defense and people that explore
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our nation's past. the latest in nonfiction books and authors. television for serious readers. >> washington journal continues. host: nebraska republican, congressman don bacon, member of the armed services committee. your military background -- you served in the u.s. air force, retired as a brigadier general, specialized in electronic warfare, intelligence, and reconnaissance. you had to -- deployments to the middle east. with that background, what do you think about the way we withdrew from afghanistan? guest: it has been a colossal
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disaster. it is going to embolden air adversaries, china, russia, iran. we already see things was taiwan and the baltics. their heightened fear of our weakness. also, i think it is alienated our allies. you hear what is going on in great britain. the person to likely replace president merkel from germany said this is the biggest debacle in nato's history. the worst thing is we have 10,000 americans still in afghanistan. i heard from some last night that cannot get through the tell that checkpoints -- the taliban checkpoints. we have a potential for lots of american hostages, lots of people stranded. that is the immediate disaster, but this is a colossal disaster. it was avoidable. the president's policy was a huge mistake. he overruled military and intelligence advisors in the white house and did what he
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thought was right. it was a political objective. host: what do you mean he overruled them? guest: the duty and intelligent folks advised against a total withdrawal -- the dod and intelligence folks advised against a total withdrawal. the military advisors and intelligence community commended against a total withdrawal. he did it anyway. host: does former president trump have some accountability? he made the deal with the taliban? how come that administration did not begin withdrawing americans. guest: i criticized. initially when he started the talks, i thought it would be all right. it is all right to try to find a pathway towards peace, but as the talks went on, i thought it was a mistake to not include the
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afghan government. you cannot negotiate with your adversaries and not have the afghan government there. it became clear to me that we were looking for rapid withdrawal. i averted in -- i voted in the defense bill last july to prohibit or restrict trump's plan to withdraw troops unless there were certain criteria met. that is why the president vetoed the defense bill. that veto was overridden. that same restriction applied to joe biden. but he decided to waive it for national security reasons. long story short, i was conical of president trump, but in the end, joe biden, it was his plan that was executed. he owns the disaster. trump deserves criticism, but in the end, this was joe biden's
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plan. host: how would you have done it differently? guest: we were in a good spot, try 500 troops in afghanistan. they were providing logistics, helping do maintenance on afghan aircraft. we had extensive combat air capabilities with that u.s. air force there. that ability allowed the afghan military when they were in trouble with the taliban, within minutes, we could provide support. we withdrew most of our air force capabilities last month. we also took away all that mechanics to work on the afghan aircraft. the bottom line is the afghan military lost its air support and it became much more vulnerable to the taliban. here is the second problem. the forces of the afghan military ran out of bullets. the u.s. helped supply them in
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months passed and years past. this withdrawal precipitated the collapse. we should have maintained a residual presence with combat air capability. we could have sustained the standstill. it was a standstill where we had 70% of the afghan territory under afghan control. we lost that within months. because it was rapid withdrawal. host: what is your view of former president ghani? guest: i have met him once. my take is that heat withdrew with lots of money, that is what we are being told. but it appears to make that she did not depart baghdad, he would have been a prisoner, probably murdered. one of the predecessors -- the taliban hung a previous leader.
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that was probably his destiny within a few days if he did not leave. what worries me is that he took a lot of money with him. we will have to investigate that. host: let us get to calls. jennifer, it illinois, democratic rep. meeks: -- caller. caller: thank you for your service. i come from a military family. i wanted to ask you -- i know you support senator gillibrand's sexual assault in the military and you've been in the military. i have no doubt you understand that culture. because you support that but you do not support the e.r.a. or anything to do with women protecting themselves and abortion, i was hoping that i can tell you as an emt, had to sign a pledge that when i pick
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people up in the ambulance no matter what the religion was i had to take care of them. no matter what, because that is what you do. you cannot just say, my religion means that i do not have to pick you up. it seems weird that you want to do that for hospitals and doctors, because i do not agree with your religion. does that mean you get to just die in the middle of the street? host: jennifer, am going to have a congressman respond. caller: i am pro-life. i believe that god made us in his image. god has a plan for all of us. though doubt -- there is no doubt that science shows an unborn baby is human and alive. when it comes to the e.r.a., even ruth bader ginsburg said that the amendment process had to start from the very beginning. the amendment process had
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already expired decades ago. some states subsequent to that decided they wanted to adopt the e.r.a., but others that adopted it earlier decided that they did not want to have the e.r.a. anymore. the bottom line is that ruth bader ginsburg was we need to start from the very beginning of the e.r.a. you cannot take up a process that expired decades ago and started back up again. when it comes to vawa, i support it. the problem is that nancy pelosi put in several changes. i do not think it is right to take biological woman and say you have to put them in the men's prison or homeless shelter or i logical man who is transgendered and say you have to put him in women's prison.
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the prisons in omaha do not think that is safe. the homeless shelters think they need to have the leeway to make the decision for any situation for what is safe for everybody. they do not want to be mandated. i support the current vawa, but speaker pelosi put a couple of poison pills in. host: oliver, virginia, democratic caller. caller: i am -- i wanted to say that i appreciate and congratulate you on your service in the military. republican or democrat, we are all americans. i am really believes that the trouble that the american people are going through is a direct
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result of electing a gentleman named donald trump to the white house who had no clue how to be a leader for all the people and i cannot understand why the republican party stands by a man who has been investigated all over the country for all kinds of crimes and they continue to support him and follow his lead. it is pretty amazing. i really believe that joe biden will be the first president to pick up seats in the midterms because of the terrible ways that the republican party followed donald trump. it is criminal. guest: i appreciate your comments. the party is not monolithic. it has the support of president trump, some do not. 2022 will not be about donald trump.
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it is going to be about high inflation rates, the collapse of our strategy in afghanistan, our crime rates have doubled in most of big cities. have a 20 year high in illegal immigration at the border. right now, generic polling shows republicans up 6%. that will be a 20 or 30 seat pickup. my last election, i won 51-46. right now, independence art supporting my positions because they do not like what they see right now. in 2020 two, the focus will be on far left policies. we just voted on a bill yesterday, it is a bernie sanders budget. that will not be well received throughout the country. if that actually gets done and passed. host: jane, virginia,
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independent. caller: thank you, general, for your service. i am a retired navy nurse. the minutes that trump surrendered us to the taliban and essentially sold us out, you guys should have been on it, getting people out of afghanistan asap, but you did not. it was not set up for failure. it is on the gop. it is on everyone who did not do their job. the bottom line is the left and the moderates are tired of the shenanigans that you guys are pulling in d.c. we did not like january 6, we do not like having the taliban at
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camp david. do your job. mandatory vaccinations. stop blaming each other. we are so tired of your behavior. goodbye. guest: i appreciate the feedback. the fact is that joe biden has been president since january. he adopted the plan that was passed on to him. that fact is that the state department has been a very slow to get the visas going. it just started maybe 2 or 3 weeks ago to put emphasis on it. i agree with the caller that we should have been working months and months earlier to get the special the set categories of afghan interpreters, we should have been moving on that a lot sooner. the fact is that this is joe biden's policy. he did it over the objections of his military and intelligence advisors. host: i want to read this from
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tommy in massachusetts, who says god bless representative bacon. i asked you to help my friend escape afghanistan. he worked for the u.s. military. my massachusetts dam -- dem delegation does not seem to care about afghanistan. you have said we will do the best to help as you meet with afghans. what stories are you hearing? guest: we have been helping hundreds. we heard from american citizens who cannot get to the checkpoints. very worried that the president will withdraw those forces bite the first. that means they need to be withdrawn around that 28th. because you have to get the military out afterwards. there are a lot of afghans were interpreters, who have served with us in various capacities, are trying desperately to get out. the taliban will not let them to the checkpoints anymore. it is fair to say that this is a disaster.
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our allies, many will be left behind, many murdered and their families tracked down. we have been trying to help hundreds, several hundred afghan allies to get out. we have been trying to steer them to parts of the airport. we have had luck with some, but we have a lot more work to do. my prayers are with this gentleman's friend still in afghanistan. if they contact our office, we will try to help. says bolton from massachusetts, his team has been doing a lot of work also trying to help individuals to get out of afghanistan. you find that a lot of the veterans who have served have dedicated two or three people full-time to try to help them get visas. that terrible thing is is that if you get to the checkpoints, sometimes the gates at the airports -- there are two or three barriers to get across. it's been nearly impossible for many defendant get to a place where they can get on an airplane.
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host: congressman, will you accept afghans into your community? guest: yes. our governor has already said he has to try to charter a jet to bring some people himself. our community is a welcoming community. i've already gotten to know several afghans who live in nebraska who are interpreters who serve in the military. they're great citizens, great neighbors. host: steve, california, republican. caller: before i make a comment, i want to tell you that i really appreciate your patience in dealing with callers. it is noticeably more so than any other host. i am sure we all recognize it and all appreciate it. now my comment. congressman, i want to say that
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we are going to lose this country. we are fast losing it. the republican party is not doing enough to make it known to all of america. i have never seen a democratic party that, once it comes to power, just like an evil, evil government, does things to solidify that power forever. what i am talking about is i deftly want to make two more states, because they will get four more senators. they want to pack the supreme court and pass hr1, which will make it a much easier to change. there is the immigration problem. lastly, they are teaching crt in
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public schools, which is training a future divisive society. if we lose this country to marxism, it will be because republicans are not taking a bullhorn to the american public and warning of the evils of what is happening all around us. we are going to be a venezuela or cuba once -- once they came to power in those two countries, they never gave up the power. i do not think you people -- those the republican party -- recognizes it and enough. caller: first of all, i appreciate the gentleman's call in. i find it industry -- interesting that this radical bernie sanders agenda -- we are seeing it with hr one, the voting rules, there are certain
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elements of the party that want to blame republicans for this far left agenda. i reject it. i've been on national tv four times now in three days talking about this stuff. leader mccarthy is on tv every day talking about what is going on, speaker pelosi's agenda, bernie sanders's agenda. even joe biden's chief of staff says they are trying to pass the most progressive agenda in the history of our country. fact is republicans have been out there talking about this. the voters gave the democrats a 3-seat majority in the house and a 50-50 split in the senate. they elected joe biden as president. there are consequences to elections. yesterday, we saw this record intervene and ruled one of joe biden's policies on the border
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unconstitutional. we have the courts as a check and balance. we still have the filibuster but have lost one or 2 -- but if we lost one or two more seats in the senate, we would lose that as well. i am willing to reach across the middle and find areas we can agree on, but we are doing everything we can. it is wrong for certain elements of our party to be blaming the party when it is joe biden, speaker pelosi, chuck schumer, bernie sanders doing these policies. you're doing everything we can appeared the pulling right now in november of 2022, republicans are sitting at a plus in battleground districts. that is a 30-seat pickup. we are going to have to work hard between now and november of 2022 to hold public opinion. host: greg, colorado, democratic caller.
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caller: the disaster in afghanistan is that we were there in the first place. given the watchdogs of the world for long enough. -- we have been the watchdogs it was brought up earlier that in our history, there have been 11 years that we have not been at war. very sad. guest: i disagree. we had 9/11. almost 3000 americans were murdered by al qaeda that were given safe haven in afghanistan by the taliban. i will never forget that day. the taliban deserved to be crushed at that moment. the al qaeda leaders deserved to be crushed, as well. we eventually got to osama bin laden. we made a mistake to try to do nationbuilding. at one time, we had 100,000 troops in afghanistan.
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we put a lot of pressure to build a society that was a more democratic. that was a mistake. but in recent years, without a strategy that was working. we had between 2500 and 500 -- 5000 troops that were noncombat. we were using extensive airpower. we were able to hold some deep percent of -- 70% of afghanistan. now the taliban are back in charge because of president biden. the taliban are going to give safe haven to al qaeda and 40 other organizations that are allied with the taliban. host: rick, new york, independent. caller: my question is with all
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the equipment left behind, you were career military, i was career military -- how do our troops now fill? we have sold off our advantage technology? how do our allies, knowing that we share this information, have taken this advantage away. we know the equipment will be reverse engineered and used against us. guest: the caller is right. this is a disaster. over $1 billion in weapons left behind now that taliban half. thankfully, they do not have technology, artificial intelligence. there is a whole genre of stuff that they do not have access to but they do have access to her night vision goggles, our helicopters, a variety of things that will hurt as in the long run. we have supplied the taliban
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with lots of guns, lots of body armor, nightvision goggles, some airpower, which i do not think they will be able to maintain in the long run. this is one of a dozen factors or areas of disaster. i appreciate the caller's concerns. it is terrible. host: congressman, you said will never forget 9/11. where were you that day? guest: i was eight to a three-star general that controlled our combat forces west of the mississippi. i was in tucson, watching it live at 6:00 a.m. i saw one tower on fire. as i was watching, the second tower exploded. i yelled at my wife, we are under attack. i ran into work. i got in right before the gates shut down at the air force base in tucson. i got to watch the commander put
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various airbases west of the mississippi on alert, because we did not know if los angeles or portland was going to be next. i will never forget that night listening to george bush speak. i burned with anger knowing what happened. we cannot forget why we were in afghanistan. there were some mistakes made once we were there. errors in strategy. rightfully defends the rational for going in after 9/11 -- i fully defend the rationale we had to answer that and we did. host: milton, georgia, republican. caller: our president is stupid. he handled afghanistan all
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wrong. he should have gotten the americans out and all the afghanistan people and gotten most of the equipment out. he should've packed the rest of the equipment out and gotten it all out. host: march, michigan, independent. -- marge caller: just couple -- one question and one comment. actually, two questions. my granddaughter just enlisted. two weeks ago, she was sent overseas. yesterday, they were told that -- you guys call it mandate, but it is forced. that they have to have the experiment vaccine. how many people in the military are declining it?
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what is this going to do to the military when many of them are going to be leaving it? another question, why doesn't the occupier in the white house ever say god bless america? guest: i do not know the current numbers of military refusing the vaccine. it was fda certified this week. one dish once it is certified, the military will likely make it a requirement. in my case, i had every vaccine known to man, anthrax, smallpox. the military has to have the ability to know that his forces can deploy tomorrow or next week . it cannot take the risk of saying 20% of its force has a covid and the unit cannot deploy. that is why they vaccinate. prior to the mandate, 60-70% of
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the military were vaccinated. i read about two weeks ago where that chairman or secretary of defense were going to allow some religious exemptions, but they would not be able to deploy. this is something we will have to monitor. it is not experimental at this point. the fda certified the pfizer vaccine. the military will mandate vaccines, because it is needed to win our nation's wars. host: thank you, congressman, for your time. we will take a break. when we come back, we will return to the open forum. can talk about afghanistan as well as the passage of the budget blueprint. there are the numbers on your
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screen. speaking of the budget blueprint , here is democratic leader steny hoyer on the floor yesterday, making a pitch to the lawmakers on why should move forward with that budget outline. >> this allows the congress of the united states to do the peoples's business. in two critical areas, actually three. number one, it provides for us to receive from the senate the budget and to do what the republicans did on their tax bill, act on a budget reconciliation bill. you did that, you've course did not pay for it. we are going to pay for this. secondly, this rule allows us to proceed on a piece of legislation which seeks to make sure that the voting rights act protecting the most important asset assistant has, and that is
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the right to vote, or, as our speaker has said, the voice of those not in power. that is not exactly what was, bow to him speaker, -- madame speaker, but two of these items are critical. when we talk about saving lives, the reconciliation bill and the build back better act is going to save lives and enriched the quality of lives. thirdly, this rule will allow us to proceed to adopt the bipartisan -- 69 senators voting for it -- infrastructure bill. it is not perfect and it is
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limited in some respects in terms of its addressing one of our most important challenges and that is climate change. it nevertheless is very substantial investment in america, its growth, its people, and jobs. it is a good bill. >> c-spanshop.org is c-span's online store. your purchase will support our nonprofit operations. you have time to order the directory with contact information for members of congress and the biden administration. >> the population of china in 1949 was 540 million.
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during the 72 years, the prc has had 5 principal leaders. since 2012, the current head of state, xi jinping. close to 30 books devoted to the subject of asia. we talk with the professor about his newest book, titled china's leaders: from mao to now. visit c-span.org/podcast or wherever you get your podcasts. host: we are back in an open forum for the next 30 minutes. we want to get your thoughts on what you have heard this morning on the debate over afghanistan,
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as well as the debate in washington this week on infrastructure and how to move forward. john, virginia, independent. caller: i retired from the marine core after 21 years. i recall being deployed overseas . i was thinking, does america support what i'm doing? i am thinking the same way. since the evacuation started, we keep talking about what a complete failure this is, it is disastrous. what we have americans there with ongoing admissions to evacuate. but real success is that they have been able to evacuate over 70,000 people from kabul. they are continuing to do that for the next seven days.
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that narrative should really be on supporting the americans that are there on the ground and air allies until they complete the mission. host: cnn and others reporting that they evacuated 19,000 in the last 24 hours. gail, north carolina, democratic caller. caller: i just want to say that i support president biden. i love president biden and i love what the democrats try to do to help people. i hated when people bring up things like marxism and help bad the democrats are, when all the democrats seem to have done throughout history is it to help people. they're the ones it gives medicaid, medicare, social security and other things like min wage laws. they talked about the trade war with china, how everything has gone up. everything sent to going up when president trump had era trade
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war with china. that is when everything started going up. i support president biden. i do not support the republicans and how they block everything. the blocks the stimulus bill, they did not want to help the people affected by the pandemic. i want to say that i support my president and my democrats, because the republicans all they want to do is help rich people and block everything. host: derek, florida, republican. caller: i wanted to say that we are a nation of citizens -- and i am constantly hearing about immigrants. we need to realize we are nation of citizens. another thing on my mind -- you still there? another thing on my mind is that we went into iraq because supposedly there was weapons of mass destruction.
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we know there is weapons in afghanistan now and we are not doing anything. host: our producer on capitol hill with the street this morning that the leader of the democratic party in the senate, chuck schumer, the senators this morning wrote a letter of the combined impact of both the infrastructure investment and jobs act in the budget resolution's instructions. we are on track to reduce u.s. emissions to approximately 45 percent beneath 2005 levels by 2030. making a push to support the $3.5 trillion budget blueprint. now the senators have to come together and put this down on paper into an actual lot. both sides, including nf democrats in the senate, have to
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agree to get this past. -- enough democrats in order to have the vote yesterday, the speaker promised the centrist democrats that they would get a vote on the bipartisan, so-called hard infrastructure, $1.2 trillion by september 27. asron -- aaron, massachusetts, republican. caller: ♪ oh, greta. caller: i have a question about biden. how can we get rid of him? he has now committed war crimes? wouldn't it be appropriate that not just us, but americans who
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see how bad he is going against americans. he is now going against people in nato countries. couldn't we charge him with war crimes, because he is deserting the people, the people who thought that afghanistan should get help? host: a reminder to you and others that you have to turn down that television so we do not get the feedback. here is president biden yesterday talking about the latest numbers on evacuations. president biden: we have helped evacuate 70,700 since august 14. just in the past 12 hours, another 19 u.s. military flights, 18 c-17's commit carrying approximately 6400
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evacuees and 31 flights have left kabul just in the last 12 hours. a total of 50 more fights, 12,000 more people since i updated you this morning. these numbers are testament to the efforts of our brave service women and men, to our diplomats in kabul, and to our allies. host: president biden yesterday. we've learned this morning, 19,000 evacuate in the last 24 hours. caller: i wanted to particularly address the woman who complained about the president not saying, god bless america at the end of each speech. i like to hear people say god bless america too, but i believe that you can walk down the street carrying a bible one hand and flake in the other and be
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neither a patriots nor a christian. i believe that president trump was a good example of thoughts. he spoke christianity, but nothing in his life exemplifies christianity. he has been married multiple times. he is an adulterer here he is a fraud, a liar, and a thief. that symbols of christianity do not make you a christian. it is the love and respect and decency we show to one another that exemplifies our christianity. host: milton, florida, democratic caller. caller: do you know of olivia troye? host: where are you asking? caller: she worked in a vice
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president pence's office visa program. she resigned because of all the stuff that steve miller tried to do so the process and put in more stuff to make these visas sabotage the program. it would take twice as long to get a visa processed. you need to have her on the program. second, these people talk about the equipment left there as if biden [indiscernible] personally. the equipment was left there anyway, because [indiscernible] if they took off and leaves this equipment there, it would be taken away, because afghans [indiscernible] , that is something you can resolve. lastly, with respect to the visa program, the people applying
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long before that, [indiscernible] host: monte, independence, texas. caller: a small messes should republicans that if they do not stop this addiction to emotionally fueled conspiracy theory, they are going to damage conservative issues for the next 100 years. the issue with biden being called illegitimate goes all the way back to barack obama being an illegal immigrant or something of that lie about his birth certificate not being correct. now to the covered vaccine, where they go to facebook for their information. yet they will go to the doctor and be treated for other symptoms which rely upon the same science used to develop the covid vaccine. two almost -- to all conservatives out there, you
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have to stop this emotionally- fueled addiction to conspiracy. host: illinois, republican. caller: that is hilarious. do you remember what hillary clinton said about trump for the whole four years? an illegitimate president. so, mr. liberal, white don't you knock off your bias? to the question at hand, i agree with the guy about what is going on in afghanistan and what a freaking disaster it is. my question is we have got a wide open southern border right now. if you are republican, why didn't you build the wall? host: ending there? rodney, virginia, independent.
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caller: a little note about the constitution. most of the colors with cold in will -- do not realize what the constitution is. it is a contract between the people and the government. i feel that they need to turn around and watch a video. host: jayna, north carolina, democratic caller. caller: i was wanting to tell how i really loved biden in the gas crisis and his lack of food and having afghanistan. host: mark, florida, democratic caller. caller: i am wondering if any of the people who have turned down the opportunity to get the vaccine or rejected it would
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sign a paper saying that when they get the virus, they are willing to give up their right to any medical care knowing that they will die when they get the virus. host: couple of headlines on the pandemic. unvaccinated our t9 more times likely -- are 29 more times likely to be hospitalized. for those of you who got the j&j shot, the company is saying a second dose study supports use of booster shots. finding comes as the biden administration is planning to roll out booster shots in late september. also, the nra has now canceled their annual meeting due to the pandemic. as we told you the house, by partyline vote, voted for the
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blueprint, the $3.5 trillion proposal. republicans voted against it. listen kevin mccarthy yesterday. >> when history writes about this day, it will talk about the entire week. it was talked about last night, how congress worked late into the night, ordered food, was in the speaker's office for late hours, spent their day calling other members, twisting votes. we had reports of the president call people, former's called people. people were threatened, their spouses were threatened. they were threatened in their own campaigns. but what were they phoned about? -- threatened about? it was about this rule. is about what we were bringing up right now. the reason we had to stop our
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briefing was because we had to come to the floor to deal with this. what are we talking about? $5 trillion of hard earned taxpayer money spent on more big government. changing election lot to benefit one the party over another. outlawing ids, even though the majority of america wants them. nothing about that $5 trillion will spend one dollar bringing america home or making us safer. host: kevin mccarthy yesterday. amelia, georgia. you are a democrat. caller: thanks, c-span. i wanted to bring up a point to republicans. when will they stop being used
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by the republican party? i wish they would sit down and really listen. every time we have republicans --, they scare the people. they always demonize the democrats, but the democrats are trying to do things that help the people. they are passing laws like the previous caller said about medicare, medicaid, social security. i was in a position where i saw firsthand president trump took office. he was taking people off the disability roles. -- rolls. they had cut a lot of medicare funding that is probably going to affect people. of course, they're going to blame biden, but the trump administration has done a lot of
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things. i wish people would use critical thinking skills and stop listening. it is hard to listen to what the democrats are saying. this budget bill is to help the elderly, it is to help provide more facilities to take care of the elderly. [indiscernible] start paying attention to what the democrats are trying to do for you and listen to what everything that comes out of the republicans. they do not have no plans, no bills, nothing. all they are trying is scaring people. in the last few weeks, you have three conservative talk show host that have died from covid. they have been lying to the people about vaccines.
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in the end, they wish to take in the vaccine. please stop. use your critical thinking skills and start paying attention. host: carlos, florida, independent. caller: i listen to people talking about afghanistan and the chaos. the american people forgotten what happened in korea. they forgot what happened in vietnam. they forgot what happened in afghanistan. we cannot win nothing. we spend money, the war machine makes money. host: the new york times. donald rumsfeld, architect of the war in afghanistan, is laid
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to rest. the two time former defense secretary's burial on monday seemed to serve as a -- to america's 20 year lost war. it said he died on june 29 of convocations -- complications. an earlier private service on monday had been sent -- set long before, that the timing delivered the same kind of shell shock as on october 7, 2001, when the u.s. launched its first airstrikes in afghanistan. johnny, texas, republican. caller: maybe democrats complain about our president, my president. i can understand why they want
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to downgrade a president that did everything in his power to keep us free. if you are a democrat, you run. isn't that sad? my descendants, relatives are natural indians. they have been here for 200 years. we made our country by winning wars, fighting communism, and all those things. but democrats do not care. all they want is these handouts. i listen to the democrats yesterday on the radio putting
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all these bills, billions of dollars. isn't that sad? our kids will be paying. they host: do not care. host:diane, new jersey, democratic caller. caller: we should put out criticism on the side and we should be with our president of the united states. he is man doing the best he can. all this fighting and criticizing is not going to help our country. what is going to help is we act as a nation and be strong. let us be peacemakers and not peace breakers. host: andrew, massachusetts, independent. caller: i wanted to thank the previous caller. it was out the comment that i
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called for, but she is absolutely right. we have got to start working together. i looked at the infrastructure plan. i thought about the new deal during the great depression and how we build things like the tennessee valley authority with hydroelectric dams. we built the hoover dam. it supplies water to las vegas. it supplies water to los angeles. it's supplies water to arizona. water is becoming something we do not talk about much, but it is becoming scarce. the hoover dam is under 35% capacity. next year, it will start cutting off supplies. it will start reducing supplies to farmers and citizens. other dams are facing the same problem. i look at the infrastructure plan and i think how we came together during the great depression, that is the
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infrastructure whose coattails allowed us to grow. thisthis unprotect or plan -- ts infrastructure plan, if we set an example again, we build these things in america, we refill our aquifers. that makes water -- that makes things cheaper for farmers and allows things to grow. it is not something everybody talks about, but the new deal and the interstate highway system that eisenhower did, that is what built america. host: i'm going to leave it at that point. we will take a break. when we come back, joining us from kabul, afghanistan, a lecturer at the american university of afghanistan. we will discuss why he decided to stay in the country. we will be right back. ♪ >> sunday on "cuban day, -- on
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"q&a," the book "the triumph of nancy reagan," on the first lady who helped shape the reagan presidency. >> she had one agenda, which was ronald reagan's well-being and success. she also had better in about people than he did, and sort of a better nose for trouble than he did. so the people in the administration who understood all this, who recognized her power, people like secretary of state george schultz or white house chief of staff, later treasury secretary, james baker, really understood that she was a very important, crucial ally to have if you were trying to get ronald reagan on board. host: the biography "the triumph of nancy reagan," sunday on
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c-span's "q&a." you can also find c-span's interviews wherever you find your podcasts. >> "washington journal" continues. host: joining us this morning from kabul, afghanistan, a lecturer at american university of afghanistan. you wrote a piece in the guardian recently about your decision to stay. tell us why. you had the opportunity to leave. why did he stay? guest: it was a complex decision. i recognized there were many more people much more deserving and in much more dire straits than i was, and i thought they should be prioritized. i had been helping facilitate the escape. i had already grown up in exile, and i am an aspiring poet as well. i had written a piece saying
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that i do not want to leave home . we have done this before. i didn't want to do it again, for better or worse. it is my country. i lay claim to the land, as much as or even more than the taliban do. so they will have to deal with people like us in this country. host: are you safe right now? guest: with regards to physical safety and security, at least the taliban says there is a certain blanket. for now, yes, i am physically safe, and i am hoping it stays that way. host: you are speaking out, though, against the taliban. would you classify yourself as a dissident? guest: the idea of ima dissident
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in a way where i will not just lay down and let them construct a world of their own accord. i think that if the taliban truly are concerned with brain drain that is happening in the country, if they really want the talented people that have already left the country to feel safe enough to come back and work for it, they will have to create an environment that is more sustainable. they will have to create a society that is more acceptable, that is more in line with modern values and doesn't necessarily have to be a completely liberal system. there can be an idea of reconciliation of different visions. so there's a lot of work. it is not a very hopeful time. these are the best of times, the worst of times because again, when conflicts happen, especially when post-conflict societies present an opportunity
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where you can transform the society to something better if you put the right amount of effort and thinking into it. host: when you walk out your door, what is your life like today? guest: i actually went to the city today. i needed to get a few things. i went by the bank, which was finally open after more than 10 days. there were a lot of people standing in line, and there were taliban fighters asking people to respect the line. jan that, the city is slowly getting better. -- beyond that, the city is slowly getting better. the taliban don't trillion direct other than i think two nights ago, they checked the paperwork of my card to make sure it wasn't a stolen vehicle because there was looting that happened on the first day.
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so the city has changed. you don't see a lot of women on the road. women are dressing up a bit more religiously, so that has changed. but also, the number of women you see on the right has changed as well. i think the country isn't going to be the same for a very long time, but we will have to see what it eventually becomes. host: will you have interacted with the taliban over the past few days? how is it that you are able to get past their check wings and carry on? -- the checkpoints and carry on? guest: everyone who was part of the republic, there were outsiders from the west that were here. i grew up in an extremely
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cultural family. i speak their language. i know the nuance of culture. when i interact with them, for them it is a pleasant surprise for somebody to be informal pants and dressed up in a more western way to speak their language or greet them in their own way. so i can see that pleasant shock in their eyes as well, and i think that gives me an opening to be able to speak since to them, to the little margin that we can. there have been issues for people like me to help and actually ask them to help. that is a unique position that i tried to use to the utmost
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advantage. host: so you have helped people to get out of kabul. can you tell us who they are, and how do you talk to the taliban to get them to the airport? guest: the good thing is that, without naming people, because i don't think that would be the safest thing to do, i've had friends here who were either working for the government or generally out in the open in essence, being in the spotlight, being celebrities. they really did feel in danger. it meant that i had to use a lot of my contacts internationally to make sure that they were connected with the organizations that facilitated their documentation to get out. then there are fixes on the ground that actually help people get into the airport. you either use specific embassies, i think using the
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hotel here in kabul, and some of my friends just managed to get food to the air -- get through to the airport on their own accord. they spent six days sleeping on the floor of an airplane, 50 people sharing one toilet, having packaged meals, only to eventually be flown out. there have been instances with regards to the movement or security or general logistics of foreign organizations here, and we've had to reach out to the taliban to help facilitate the logistics from being looted. so i have been able to do that, and i think that is a little difference that would not have
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happened otherwise, so i am glad i'm here. i'm glad i can do that. host: i want to invite our viewers to join in the conversation. if you aren't half can -- if you are an afghan refugee, (202) 748-8000, an afghan american, (202) 748-8001, and all others, (202) 748-8002. you described fixers on the ground. describe who these people are. guest: there is something to be said about the social hierarchy you have created with the phone numbers you're giving out. beyond that, the fixers are different people. they are either people commissioned by international organizations in order to help move people that are in danger or find them and locate them. there are also afghans who have taken this up as a means of
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driving in the shadow economy of this conflict. they charge people a lot of money for movement into the airport. you would expect that when the worst of times hit us, that the best nature of humans comes out, but unfortunately, that is not what we see. even if there are rare cases, it still breaks your heart because you would expect everyone to give as much as they can to help. but there will always be people amongst us who thrive in other people's suffering. host: and can you give us an idea of how much money they are being charged? guest: in the initial days, it was $200 to move a person. it eventually went up to $200 or $300. there was an old lady that we had to move to the airport to get out, and one of the pictures
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that's one of the fixers quoted $25,000 the other day to make. who has that sort of money lying around in a country that doesn't have a government, a country where banks are shuttered? so it has been quite overwhelming. host: what have you heard about once you get to the airport? what is happening around the perimeter? host: well, -- guest: well, it is very crowded. you hear firing quite a few times in a day. the issue is from both sides, the management of the airport with regard to seeing people's documentation, too many people to entertain, and on the other end, the taliban really don't know who to let in and who to let go, and there's very little communication on both ends. so a lot of people have spent a day or two in the airport and had to get out again because
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they weren't facilitated. some people had documentation and were still turned away. people who had worked with foreigners, who were under threat. i think there was a lady that put up a post on her facebook the other day saying despite how much work i had done for this country and for the country she had worked for, they had given up on her. she was rejected at the airport, and she felt like her life was over and she was under threat. so there have been instances of this sort as well. basically, imagine armageddon, everyone running around and everything being chaotic, and you have the airport in kabul right no. host: obaidullah baheer is a lecturer in afghanistan, joining us today. what is your message to america?
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guest: there's a very interesting piece on "the new york times" today on the chief of the army in afghanistan, who has also fled the country. basically, the essence of it is he says we lost because the united states tied our hands behind us, and then biden calls us cowards for not having fought. he said that we laid down 68,000 lives, which was 1/5 of our army, for the cause of defending this country, so don't belittle what sacrifices we gave to the country. beyond that, i think the american populace has the power of its own voice, and it really needs to keep president biden in check because he acts like none of this was his response ability. he acts like he did not owe anything to afghanistan.
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i do understand the withdrawal. trust me, we did not want troops to stay here longer, but there were better ways to go about it. there were better ways to support the armed forces. there were better ways to keep the afghan government that was extremely corrupt in check. so they failed at all of that, and now the least that can be done is engaging with the taliban, making sure a more proper and safe mechanism for people to get out is insured, and making sure that the afghan population that was given the dream or started dreaming in the past 20 years, they are not stripped of it in the near future. an unsustainable society here, a fragile state in afghanistan, will haunt the region, will haunt the world. it has done before. we really don't hope it gets to that. because the moment the united
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states decides to isolate afghanistan, decides to impose sanctions, the only truly suffering people will be the common for people of afghanistan, and they have seen a lot of war. they have seen a lot of suffering. generation after generation have been stuck in this vicious cycle of violence and poverty. let's break those. let's try to find a way to work this. this isn't the ideal society or ideal political situation afghans wanted or the united states wanted, but we will have to make do. we will have to make the most out of it. host: mohammed is joining us from new york. good morning to you. mohammed? caller: yes ma'am. are you there? host: yes, we are listening. caller: yes, my question is -- host: robin, good morning. caller: good morning.
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i just wondered to say i really admire what you are doing there, mr. baheer. i am so grateful for your voice. my question to you, i think that you have a perspective that we don't hear a lot. if a could get to where you are, would it be welcome? do you think it would be disturbing to to the people who need? -- who need it? guest: what would be welcome? caller: humanitarian aid, like food, water, antibiotics, medications, things like that. are those things that you see that people need? with the even welcome that coming from the united states? i know that the british are trying to pass a bill to get humanitarian aid to people that are still there in kabul.
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so i wondered, coming from the british were coming from the americans, would that be some thing that would be welcome there? guest: and what was your name, sorry? caller: robin. guest: robin, that is a really beautiful name which by the way. thank you for your kind words. there's a very simple principle in life. it says that your neighbor comes first, and that means that people in the your quality -- in your locality deserve help deserve help more than people that are further away because right now, we don't really have a government. there's not really security for any aid process that might start. so what you can do is reach out to your local representatives. see if they are helping in the process of accepting more afghan evacuees. find out where they are. go to them.
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imagine, these people left in their own clothes. they didn't even have a bag. they weren't allowed to carry a bag. these people left lavish houses here. they had everything they needed. there houses are still packed with their stuff, unlocked, and people walk in and search these houses. so the least you can do is go and find these people, befriend them, tell them that their lives aren't over, tell them that they have a future in your country. help them in any way you can, or just volunteered to organizations that are already doing this. these are all opportunities that you have, and they will make a huge difference. the reason 20 years ago, people could take up arms and heard random, innocent americans was because they didn't know the common people of america. there wasn't any people to
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people contact. this is an opportunity to change that area show them that united states truly is the land of dreams being actualized, and let them try it. everyone that came to you is an educated person that has had successful careers. these aren't people that are going to be a burden on your economy. so help them whatever what you can. those people are closer to you, and then it will mean a lot more to them. host: we will go to jackson next in arlington, virginia. go ahead. caller: good morning. i appreciate this show and i appreciate the comments coming from this fine afghanistan citizen. i served both in a rock and afghanistan -- in iraq and afghanistan. i left iraq, and about two and a half years, i did afghanistan for a year in 2010.
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a comment i want to make into question i want to ask. the comment is there's is a paradox that exists here in that a lot of the folks you hear, and i am going to keep it apolitical because this could apply to either democrats or republicans, independents, it doesn't matter. but there are commentaries being made that we want to keep america safe. we went there because of safety of americans. his are the same folks who will say it is now unpatriotic, it is now a failure that america is leaving after 20 years. to a comment that the fine gentlemen just made, where he said take care of your locality first, here we are talking about afghanistan and finally leaving this 20 year war, we have done nothing to our locality. there's haitians right now who are dying. nothing is being said or done on
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the news to support them, and they are right there. so my question to the gentleman here is would you agree that the united states, at least from my perspective, that it seems like the united states wanted something more from afghanistan then afghans -- i keep forgetting, i pledge eyes, afghani -- i apologize, afghani, we wanted something more in afghanistan that the afghan people wanted. that is why we are in the condition that we are in today. host: ok, jackson. let's get a response to that in. mr. baheer. guest: i think that there are a lot of things that went wrong in afghanistan. there were far better ways of conducting this war. there were far better ways of
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establishing the system that was established here. the united states came to afghanistan in a lot of anger and rage. that meant that there wasn't a lot of understanding for the local culture. cultural sensitivities are really important because you served, and you must have remembered winning -- member to the winning hearts and minds strategy which is the only good thing the united states army as a policy tried to implement in afghanistan. unfortunately, it was too little, too late at that point. it is very difficult to win wars because the only successful war we have seen in recent history is crimea and the annexation of it. so the longer wars, intractable conflicts are very difficult to resolve. in those circumstances, the united states really needed to understand the local context of
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the fighting. you cannot use this one-size-fits-all strategy for every region that you engage in. that meant that even when the united states took a back row in their engagement with afghanistan, should they -- they should have found people that had more of an understanding and afghanistan. what happened is the united states brought people into power from the west. that means they did not know much about the culture, just like the united states administration didn't initially. so these same people that fled the country, including the president, including his national security advisor, including his head of administrative office, all of these people spent most of their lives abroad. they did not understand how to engage with afghans. so there is a shift with regards to what was the purpose of the united states in afghanistan
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because we did hear that it was nationbuilding. that was to liberalize and conduct liberal democracy here. on the other hand now, when biden is evacuating or withdrawing, he says no, we were just there to engage with al qaeda. we were there to kill bin laden. al qaeda hasn't been defeated. bin laden's killing happened with the support of afghans and at the backs of hundreds of thousands of lives. so yes, i do understand that everyone who votes for a president in the united states has a social contract where they should be the priority. however, sometimes we have to compare the tragedies or the crises people are facing, and i guess after a 20 year war, it would only make sense for the united states to find it within itself to accommodate these afghans and prioritize them
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because it is a very short window, and this doesn't take too much. it is -- it's effects on the image of the united states is going to be remembered for a very long time . host: the president is sticking to that august 31 deadline. what concerns do you have with that? who will be left behind? guest: there are a lot of people who worked for the government who are in absolute danger, who are still stuck, who still haven't been processed. there are a huge number that have to be processed, and i understand the situation there and how the buffer could slow things down. the issue is we heard from the taliban spokesperson yesterday saying they will not let afghans leave after the august 31 deadline. today we heard from the political office of the taliban saying anyone who has legal documentation to leave the
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country will be allowed to so. the issue isn't that a people leaving. the issue is the apprehension that the taliban might playing nice until the final foreign troops leave. even though i would bet on them actually one thing to -- actually wanting to meet the requirements or give into the leverage that the international community has with regards to international legitimacy, with regards to relief of sanctions, with regards to renting because if they want a functioning state, they would need all of those. i think even after the 31st deadline, we might see some strict measures with regards to letting people leave, but i personally don't think they are going to commit large-scale atrocities because it is going to risk taking them back 25 years ago, when they were isolated, and they really were a failing state. host: landon in michigan, and
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african-american, good morning -- an afghan american, good morning. caller: yes, every refugee that comes to this country should be voting public and -- voting republican. the democratic party has brainwashed this country. everything you google is bad about the republicans. they demonize republicans, just like that lady from georgia who says i can't believe everybody listens to the republicans. guess what? we can't believe that everybody listens to the democrats. host: ok, i am going to move onto the next caller in maryland. what is your name? your question or comment for our guest? caller: first of all, i want to thank you so much for giving me the opportunity. i appreciate the wonderful job that you do. i also want to thank president
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biden for making a strong decision in deciding to pull america out of afghanistan. i thing it is the right thing to do. let's also not forget that it was trump that made this deal. so if this deal goes bad, it is trump's deal, not president biden still. all he is doing is trying to carry out. trump would have done this if it was the other way around. secondly, i just want to do say to the professor, or ask a question, the way that the afghans handed over the weapons to the taliban -- host: mr. baheer, did you hear the question? guest: he is saying why people handed over weapons to the taliban? host: yes, the afghan soldiers, why did they put down their weapons, and the taliban take
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control? guest: part of the deal signed with the taliban by the trumpet adminstration included disabling a lot of the aerial support and tech support that was offered to the afghan army to contractors. they limited that. not only did the united states not have any capability to afghan troops, but neither could the contractors that were associated with them, which means everything that they learned to rely on for so long was gone. but that is not the only reason. i think a lot of the political strategies that were taken were for a president who is trying to lead a war and act like a general. that meant that a lot of mistakes were committed. they tactically retreated from around the city. that meant that the taliban
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wanted to go for the cities, and it was very easy for them to access them. and when the united states acted to sign the deal and give the taliban momentum of having a bit more conviction, the afghan troops really had no leadership, had no cause to die for which is why, and maybe this is a blessing in disguise, they chose to disintegrate. they chose to surrender. which meant that a lot of afghan lives that could have been lost with tougher battle was avoided. i personally think that, despite the harm that military does integration does to the national interest as a whole, i think it is better that afghan lives were saved. i had friends who were commande rs who died for this war, and their friends now asked the mr. president why their brother had to die when he was going to flee
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the country and give it up to the taliban anyways. so maybe the commandos that didn't die are worth accepting the harm that military disintegration caused. host: mr. baheer, what is your future? guest: predicting the future is no absolute science. hindsight works better. i don't know. i don't know. i am trying to make the best of the tools available to me. i am trying to speak out. i am teaching at george washington university and co-lecturing there hopefully in the spring of 2022. i have a talk hopefully coming up at oxford in a month. so i am just trying to raise my voice. i am just trying to be someone there who can help educate his students, who can help create some semblance of hope in these
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very dark and difficult times, and hoping that this transition goes well for afghanistan's sake , for the international community's sake. host: obaidullah baheer, lecturer at the american university of afghanistan, thank you for your time this morning. we appreciate it. guest: thank you for having me. it is my pleasure. host: we are going to now bring you to capitol hill. speaker pelosi is holding a news conference on the legislative work that they have done this week on that 3.5 trillion dollar budget blueprint. let's listen in. it is a threat to our military and the people at the -- >> it is a threat to our military and the people at the airport. that is kind of what he said yesterday, but i think more may unfold in that regard. i can't go into what happened at the caucus yesterday, but one
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impression that one might take of people coming out is that people really want to encourage the president to stay on, but he has to say, weigh the equities of the danger versus the advantage, and i trust his judgment there. >> do you have reaction to your flexion -- to your reflection on the week? i am curious what your reflection is on what they frame is a deal, you say is not much of a deal. >> it is a clarification. we have a vision about how we go forward. it is in grasp because of the reconciliation. there are those who would like to see the reconciliation be smaller, and some of that from the outside had an impact on
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some of the debate. but i have tremendous respect for all of our members, with their views are and what they bring to the table. and what, at the end of the day, what had to prevail was the president vision -- what the president's vision and the needs of americans working families. we had to pass the infrastructure bill by september 30 an array because the author -- 30 anyway because the authorizations expire for some of the things in the bill, so we are talking about a couple of days earlier. but again, their participation was constructive. i welcome it. i was pleased that we were able to get 100% of the democrats to vote. and let me take it back to our colleagues. the steam that was in our caucus was to get this done for the president, for the american people, for america's working families. as i always say come our
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diversity is our strength. our unity is our power. we had our diversity. we had our discussions. they were respectful all around. and our unity was our power. that's it? thank you all very much. thank you. host: speaker pelosi answering some questions you heard about the work that was done in the house this week. the last question was about those 10 centrists democrats that held up their efforts to move forward on $3.5 trillion budget blueprint. they got those 10 centrists on board by promising a september 27 vote, or at least a vote by that date, on the $1.2 trillion infrastructure package. those are the 10 democrats on your screen who secured the vote for what they call the hard infrastructure, 3.5 trillion dollar budget blueprint the other big bill that was voted on
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yesterday in the house. that is what the democrats are calling human infrastructure. our conversation with all of you until the top of the hour this morning. we are in an open forum, and you can talk about that. you could talk about afghanistan , our last guest and what you heard from him as he decides to stay in kabul and help the country going forward. the president saying that he is going to stick to that august 31 deadline. the taliban saying they will not let evacuations after that. more to come on the situation in afghanistan, and of course, the covid-19 pandemic also on the table this morning. we heard from the white house that according to an intelligence report that was done on the origins of covid-19, the intelligence community says it is inconclusive where and how
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this virus began. you can talk about that this morning as well. larry from granbury, texas is a republican. we will go to you. good morning. caller: yes, i was just wondering what this bill entails for the seniors and the people in the united states. what are they going to do with this bill with all that money they said they are coming out with? how is it going to impact the seniors in the elderly? thank you. host: well, i don't know specifically about seniors and elderly, but when you look at some of the top numbers according to npr of what is in this $3.5 trillion budget blueprint, this is considered their wish list, their ideas. $706 billion for universal pre-k and community college tuition, $332 billion for public housing and housing affordability, for clean energy development they want to spend $198 billion, to
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address forest fires and reduce carbon emissions, $135 billion, and for immigration, they are looking to spend $170 billion. there's more work to be done. the senate and the house have passed this blueprint, but now they need to come together and put their ideas down on paper and turn it into law. whether or not they can do that and still get 51 votes in the senate is still up in the air. that question still exists. however, the house has gone home , back to their states, to their districts, and the senate remains in recess. neither body will be coming back until mid-september, and of the month. ellen in ocean springs, mississippi, a republican. good morning to you. caller: good morning. thank you for letting me talk. host: go ahead. we are listening. caller: all right.
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i am very concerned about $5 trillion being passed in the house of representatives. we do not have $5 trillion. we are in debt $7 trillion or $9 trillion. i have forgotten that number. we do not have that money. we are just printing money. surely i am not the only american of any political party that cares deeply about that. host: ok. dan in oregon, democratic caller. your turn. caller: hello, thank you. i wanted to talk about the people coming out of afghanistan and why everybody is blaming biden for this one biden was telling everybody to leave
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afghanistan last april and may, and also on the $1 trillion, we are in debt trillions and trillions, the republicans didn't have a problem with this debt when they wanted to give tax breaks to the rich, so i really don't understand why all these republicans are whining all the time. besides, covid, from what i hear, it is only republicans dying out. host: bonnie in ohio, a republican. caller: i just thought it was so disgraceful yesterday when the president of the united states came out and talked about build back better, then about taxes, and then about the voting thing before he had the most in wharton thing our country is going through right now. we've got a problem that never needed to be that way.
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they could have taken out everything that we needed to take out. we are leaving billions of dollars in our guns and tanks and planes and stuff, going right into the hands of the taliban and then isis. it is disgraceful that this country, these democrats couldn't have worked a plan out much better than what they did, and they were right yesterday when the senators all stood up there and said that the blood of this situation goes right to pennsylvania avenue. i just pray for our country because i am really worried. i'm older. i've got great grandchildren and grandchildren that's concerning me the most of what they've got facing them. so i think our country needs to be in prayer more. thank you so much. host: let's listen to the president yesterday. he talked about the august 31 deadline. here's what he had to say. [video clip] >> first, on evacuation, we
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agree that we will continue our close cooperation to get people out as efficiently and safely as possible. we are currently on a pace to finish by august 31. the sooner we can finish, the better. each day of operations brings added risk to our troops, but the completion by august 31 depends upon the taliban continuing to cooperate and allow access to the airport for those who we are transporting out, and no disruptions to our operation. in addition, i've asked the pentagon and the state department for contingency plans to adjust the timetable should that become necessary. i am determined to ensure that we complete our mission. i am also mindful of the increasing risks i have been briefed on, and the need to factor those risks in. they are real and significant
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challenges that we also have to take into consideration. the longer we stay, starting with the acute and growing risk of the terrorist group known as isis-k, which is a sworn enemy of the taliban as well. everyday we are on the ground is another day we know that isis-k is seeking to attack the airport and both u.s. and allied forces and innocent civilians. host: president biden on why he is sticking to the august 31 deadline. richard in fremont, nebraska, independent. we are an open forum. what is on your mind? caller: good morning. first of all, i do support our president, joe biden. secondly, the gentleman who just spoke was so clear about one thing. we need to respect and understand culture in other countries. we are in america a freethinking, liberated world here. there is the opposite.
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i think that is our biggest problem. we come in, we want to change them to be us. that will never happen. thank you for the call. host: dave from maryland, a republican. caller: yes, how are you today? host: good morning. caller: i have three comments i wanted to make. one was with the president, you know, with leaving all of the arms behind. i think that has put us in a really bad position. and i'm afraid we are going to end up leaving some americans behind when we do leave because we are negotiating with a terrorist organization, and they really don't have anything to lose. and then one more comment, a big concern of mine is with having the open borders, are we inviting terrorists in from mexico? those are my comments. thank you very much.
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host: michael in virginia, an independent. michael, your turn. caller: thanks for taking my call. i'm as independent as independent gets. i voted for clinton and i also have voted republican. i feel for our military and our men and women that are put in a very dangerous situation right now. all of this falls on biden. yes, this plan was in, but the way this has been done as a total catastrophe, worse than vietnam ever dared to be. my biggest fear is there's going to be over 2 million people coming through our southern border this year. we are taking afghans in that cannot possibly be vetted. i just hope and pray we don't have to go back to afghanistan like we had to do eight years ago when we pulled out of iraq and isis took over three years later. i pray for our soldiers, and god bless america. host: dilbert in texas, a republican. did i say that right? caller: angleton.
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host: ok, go ahead. caller: yes ma'am. i've got just a comment. cnn. host: we are listening, dilbert. caller: cnn hasn't said anything about climate change since afghanistan. what about climate change? host: ok. griff, maine, democratic caller. caller: hello? host: we are listening. caller: ok. i think this might be a really good opportunity to take a look at the number of incursions the united states has made in asia since the korean war, and the results of that, which end up with us trying to defend a
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country in the middle of a landlocked area, and the results have been probably less than spectacular, but i would be interested in what the readers might have to say about what to do in the future as to how the united states should relate to this very troubled area of the world, and now i will get off the line. thank you. host: on capitol hill yesterday, republicans united in their opposition against the $3.2 trillion budget blueprint. listen to the argument made by louisiana republican steve scully's, member of the river look and leadership in the house -- steve scalise, member of the republican leadership in the house. [video clip] >> the package of bills includes a budget that i'm sure very few people in this gym or have read that authorizes the taxing and spending of trillions more dollars. what does that mean? they call it the for the children act. it really should be called the mountains of debt for the children act because that is what it does.
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if you look at inflation today, every family in america is facing inflation. they are paying over 40% more for gasoline, for cars, for things that they buy at the grocery store. families know that if you add trillions more debt, trillions more spending, trillions more in taxes, inflation will only go up, you know who is going to pay for it? it is not anybody in this chamber. under their own budget, it says it. it is the children. that is who is going to pay for it. just go to page seven, where it authorizes up to $45 trillion in debt. we are at about $28.6 trillion right now, $45 trillion in debt. taxes and spending through the roof that will hit every family in america. host: steve scalise on the floor yesterday, arguing against the democrats' move to push through that budget blueprint.
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on afghanistan, we told you earlier that to embers of congress, republicans -- a republik and and democrat, both veterans, visits kabul -- visited kabul amid evacuation's, saying they were doing so because of their role in congress to oversee. this is from reporting from "the los angeles times" this morning, that three officials familiar with the flight that they took said the state -- the state department, defense department, and white house officials were furious because it was done without authorization from officials -- without coordination with diplomat or military commanders during the evacuation. caller: i just feel like these two are idiots and most of my party is idiots. my family has been in the military, and i know some members that are over there. so you are going to tell me, let's go over here and disturb
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how these people are trying to evacuate these people because i want to take a nice trip? come on, frat boys. stop at. -- stop it. host: joe in oklahoma, democratic caller. caller: yes ma'am, thank you for taking my call. i just want to mick a little bit of a comment on that gentleman from afghanistan who is a lecturer. i hope that the state department will do better vetting of all of these refugees than they did in 9/11, when most of the people on the flight were supposedly saudi citizens with passports. so i hope they check for any false documents and stuff that might impede their success here in the united states. thank you for taking my call. host: jason from philadelphia in a text, "why do we need to wait for the tell event to cooperate? our american citizen -- the
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taliban to cooperate? our american citizens are in desperate need." bill in florida, what do you say this morning? caller: yes, how are you doing this morning? host: i'm fine. caller: i would like to recite some history, if you have the time. host: go ahead. caller: ok. do you remember the issue about saigon and all of that? well, history repeated. host: ok. caller: and if you give me the time, in 1975, when president ford was trying to get people that cooperated with us out of there, the vietnamese, there was a senator at that time who belittled those efforts by president ford. he was trying to get money to
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relocate these people, and this senator fox that -- this senator thought that -- senator fought that. the senator also prevented president ford from getting solicitations from organizations to relocate those people. just so everybody wants to know, that senator -- in vietnam to bring those people out that really helped us. that senator was joseph biden. host: bill, i am go to leave it there because it is difficult to hear you. roger in hawaii, independent. we are in open forum this morning. what is on your mind about what is happening in washington? caller: i wanted to comment about afghanistan. how can the world to of the top three armies not be able to
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defeat some people that are running around in pickup trucks with very little weaponry? how can they get away and not have the russians, for many years, attack and retreat? now we have been here 20 years, and now we are retreating. how can we not beat these people that are riding around with horses and toyotas? host: a democrat in tennessee, this text, "trump could have and should have gotten all of our allies out of afghanistan in the first year of his at adminstration. he instead started to withdrawing 2020 is in agreement with the taliban withdraw by may 1, 2021. sandra in california, democratic caller. caller: hi.
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i just want to say a few things. good morning. trump should never be able to run for president ever again for what he did in washington. i was always told that when you do america like trump did and have those people come into the white house like they did, that is treason. host: you mean on january 6 come on the capitol? caller: yes, and people act like they don't understand. they don't even mention that. and he can run for president event -- present again? come on, now. i think first and foremost, americans always heard take care of home first before we start letting other people come into this country. look at the millions of homeless people we have here in america. somebody needs to stop it. thank you. host: christine, massachusetts,
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republican. caller: good morning. i would just like to explain a little bit how much $1 trillion is. i don't think the average person understands how much money that is. here's the example i would like to give. if you are born into a rich family and your grandfather decides to put $1 million a day into the bank since you were born, you would have to live to be 3000 years old before you had $1 trillion. when i heard that, it blew my mind. now this thinking of spending $5 trillion in addition to the $28 trillion that we already owe, i think it is appalling the amount of money we are spending. host: i'm going to leave it there because i want to share one other headline. a report details mishandling of police emergency systems on january 6.
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u.s. capitol police did not adequately respond to frantic calls for help from officers when they pressed panic buttons on their radios, seeking immediate backup, as scores of pro-trump rioters beat officers with bats and other weapons. this according to the inspector general's report. the report obtained by the ap offered new details about the shortcomings by law enforcement during the january 6 insurrection at the capital. reports found that most of the emergency activations from individual officers radios were never simulcast on police radio. a standard protocol designed for emergencies and crises. the on-duty watch commander appears not to have been made aware of at least some of the sect of -- some of the system activation, according to the report. you can read more on the associated press website. surely in missouri -- shirley in missouri. caller: yes, can you hear me? host: we can. caller: i am calling at the
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color -- calling about the caller before now who said we need to take care of americans before anyone else. there are people dying over here because of trump. we have people out of work and things like that. joe biden came in on a -- because trump left it like that. now they talk about the democrats, joe biden is behind african-americans, white americans, whatever americans. he's not biased like trump was. . he's not a racist like trump was. as far as the call the other day talking about kamala harris, he couldn't pronounce her name. i'm going to tell you her name. kamala harris, and she is our african-american vice president, so get over it, and lee biden
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alone. host: don in texas, good morning. caller: yeah, talk is cheap. there is not a racist ounce of anything in mr. trump. he's a man's man. he did so much it scared the democrats. and they are erasing at all and making a travesty out of this country. it is unbelievable. can you believe men, women and children and all of our armory and afghanistan and pull out? we left half the people there and all our armory. host: that is our final thought this morning. we will be back tomorrow morning, 7:00 a.m. eastern time, for more conversation with all of you. thanks for calling in. enjoy the rest of your day. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2021] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its
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caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> at 1030 eastern, we will take you live to the pentagon for the first of two scheduled briefings. we will hear from press secretary john kirby and army major general hank taylor about u.s. efforts to evacuate americans and others from the afghan capital of kabul. that's coming up at 10:30 eastern on c-span. >> c-span is your unfiltered view of government. we are funded by these television companies and more, including comcast. >> you think this is just a community? it is way more than that. >> comcast is partnering with 1000 community centers to
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create wi-fi enabled areas so families can be ready for anything. comcast support c-span, along with these other television providers. giving you a front row seat to democracy. >> sunday on q&a, a conversation with -- the triumph of navy nancy reagan. >> she had but one agenda, which was ronald reagan's well-being and success. and, she was also -- she had better instinct about people than he did. sort of a better nose for trouble than he did. the people in the administration who understood all this, who recognized her power, people like secretary of state george schulz or white house chief of staff and later treasury secretary james becker really
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understood she was a very important and crucial ally to have if you were trying to get ronald reagan on board. >> the biography "the biography of nancy reagan," sunday night at 8:00 eastern on q&a. you can find all interviews were you get your podcasts. ♪ >> middle and high school students, your opinion matters. let your voice be heard with c-span's video competition. be part of the national conversation by creating a documentary that answers the question, how does the federal government impact your life? your video will explore a federal policy or program that affects you and your community. c-span's studentcam competition has $100,000 in cash prizes, and a shot at a grand prize of $5,000.

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