tv Tom Kean CSPAN February 25, 2021 5:20pm-5:50pm EST
example for how we should treat our workers around and country. and that's the goal of the committee. so, with that, this committee is going to adjourn, and we'll see everybody tomorrow morning. >> thank you. you're watching c-span3, your unfiltered view of government. c-span3 was created by america's cable television companies. today we're brought to you by these television companies who provide c-span3 to viewers as a public service. we can nights this month we're featuring american history tv programs as awe preview of what's available every weekend on c-span3. tonight a conversation between benjamin franklin and thomas jefferson as portrayed by bill robely and bill barker. they talk about their roles in shaping revolutionary war era america and the constitutional government it produced. watch tonight beginning at 8:00 p.m. eastern and enjoy american
history tv every weekend on c-span3. first guest is tom kean. he served as former chair of thd 9/11 commission, member of the bipartisan center, task force oy terrorism and ideology cochair andhe the former governor of ne jersey. governor kean, thank you for giving us your time today. >> thank com you.milook >>ing give you wrote a letter t president biden and vice president harris about the ideas of the logistics of january 6th. can you give us the gist of the letter and why youne wrote it? >> we looked at this event on the 6th and thought it was a edk real violation of our democracy. really. something that never happened p? before. i don't thinkkhow the capitol been invaded like that since the british in 1812. this was our own citizens. why did it happen? how did it happen?an what are the facts and what can we do to make sure it never ever
happens again? so our feeling was the 9/11 commission made 41 recommendations, which were s basically accepted, most 40 of them by the american people and the congress. because of that we're safer.ag we haven't had an event like that for -- since 9/11.our ex and it worked. so, why not dowi somethingth lil this again tod get to the botts of this. we don't want thisission to evee happen again. >> ben, with your experiences u with the commission, what would you suggest first off with this commission being proposed in the congress to take a look at these issues? >> first of all it's got to be truly bipartisan. if you're not going to make a bipartisan commission, if you're not going to appoint men and womeng to go who are really goio across the aisle and talk to n n each other andot come up with a solution that both sides can yo buy, then don't do it. you've got to have it
bipartisan. you've got to get enough time to do the job. you've got to get enough money to do the job. hopeful and make it visible all the ways through so people know exactly what's happening step by step and hopefully they'll make -- dd they can do this, let the american people know exactly what happened, how it happened andma why it happened. and we can set up some mechanisms to make sure it never happens again and the capitol is never that poorly defended, frankly. >> your commission had ten n pae members and nearly 80 full-timeg employees. chaps 20reviewed 2 million page documents, 1,200 interviews, 2 public hearings as well.ioned it took 20 months to compile a 574 page, 14 chapter report. you mentions the 41 ure, b recommendations for securityut agencies w. that in mind, governor, as far as the scope, you said it had to be bipartisan in nature, but what keeps it from being political, and what did you learn about your
experiences from there?e >> it's very hard toappoin keeps bipartisan. it's not hard to make them partisan. so, it's the men and women who . are appointed to the commission. that's the key. if they want to keep it as bipartisan, they will. if they talk to each other, respect each other, respect eacy others' ideas and get along that way, then the american people will be well-served. and that's why it's so very, very important that these men and women are -- have a record, frankly, a record in their lives of working across the aisle andr putting country above party. >> in your mind who are the best candidates for the position to fill on the commission? >> i've got some and i've passe. on some to the people who would be doing the appointing. you can't make those names exp public, not at this point.date t >> in term of their experiences, what type of scope of experience do you think makes a good candidate to serve? >> well, a variety of o experiences.
somebody could have served in the legislature, one branch of congress or other.s to it can't be people who are serving now. and it can't be anybody who has ambitions to climb up the political ladder. so, in the 9/11 commission, we used to talk of ourselves a bunch of has beens. those are the kind of people rs you're lookingth for. they're from wonderful former governors, mayors, attorneys at, general, finding themselves in washington or people that worked in bush administration or the obama administration or the ck o clinton administration. you know, you have a breadth ofa people to pick from. i know with the right motivatioi the congress can find men and . women who can do this job. >> our guest with us, if you want to ask questions about the investigation on the attack on the u.s. capitol, call us, 202-748-8001 for republicans. 202-748-8000 for democrats.
and 202-748-8002 for independents. you can text thoughts. you can post on twitter and facebook asowers well. governor, what powers should this commission have in order to do its best work? >> you've got to have subpoena power. o hopefully, you know, they have to use it.uth. we almost never used it.but, we used it once when the agencies lied to us so we called them back and made them tell the truth. but they beyond that subpoena you find a lot of people who say we're not going to come talk to you. if you have subpoena power because they know if they don't come you're going to make them o come. that's the main power you need. >> in your mind, what areas gue: should be subject to subpoena? in your mind who should they be talking to? >> a whole breadth of anybody involved in this attack on the capitol. obviouslynd the we're going to questions.
i've read a lot of accounts and they differ. wou was this plannedld ahead of tim? did people get in little groupsn and say we're going i to go and invade the capitol? this is what we're going to do and let's take three weeks to plan it. was it spontaneous? was it incited at the time? why was the capitol so poorly a. defended at the time? you had a huge amount of peopleo there.e. there were less people capitol than he protecting an athletic event ino this country. so, there's a whole series of questions. as they getle des one question answered, it leads to another.nd and the bottom line is the american people deserve a full report of what happened and then recommendations outda of that wt happened to make sure it never happens again. >> should former president trump be subpoenaed? >> hopefully they don't have to subpoena anybody. but he's one of the people you s would have to question.iden p on the 9/11 commission we ve to questioned the present e-rang president, the present vice president, the former president. so, i think you've got to have . wide ranging -- the ability to t
call whoever has information to get your report. >> more with our guest as we go throughout.od this is robert in kentucky, republican line. you are first up with tom kean, former chair of the 9/11 commission. robert, go ahead. >> caller: i do remember mr. tom kean. i respect him because i love i president bush. he was my favorite president. he brought up some very interesting points that he said that american people do need truth about what comemehe out o both sides. and it's clearly that both sides was -- if this was planned and he says it seems to be planned. if you watch the tape, trump supporters were on the frochbt capitol. you can clearly see there was a line of people that come behind the people they wereth looking i like what is going on? then a guy tries to break through the window, the capitol window with a tashield, with a shield, and it's clearly on tv that day. how long did it take him to get
in there? and was that the only one that bridged? i agree with tim and god bless tim for bringing that up. god bless you, pedro. >> y robert in, kentucky. thank you. >> i think you've got to get all the evidence. a you've got to findnd m exactly d happened and tellea. the americ people about it and move to prevent it in the future.yo that's the idea. >> james in wilson, north . carolina, democrat's line. you're next up. hello. >> caller: good morning, c-span. good morning, governor. you used to be my governor. i know you know what you're talking about. pro i see everything what trump done. he asked the people to go down and protest and they went down i and they broke in and went to nancy pelosi's desk and went gon through all the mail and everything and see one with thed laptop. and i know you know what you're talkingwh about.ene the governor, you have been a good
governor. i'm a democrat. when i was in new jersey, you were the best governor ever been. and i'm telling you, jim florio was the sorryiest we ever had. you're a good one governor.. i love you. >> thank you. >> al, independent line.ttle h hi there. >> caller: thank you for taking my call. let me do you a little history, mr. kean, on what all politician commissions have given us. they've given usus bankrupted social security, $100 trillion inllary' debt, endless wars, th investigations on hillary's wat emails, benghazi, the 2008 y in financial crisis. so, when you say you want to go bipartisan, no.. we have a uniparty in washington. you guys are all in it, the democrats and republicans ld together. if you had legitimatenever ha investigations and a legitimate government, donald trump could never have gottenelecte elected. but he did. terms and the reason o that he got
elected is because guys like you think in term of democrats and republicans. it's notnot going to work. and if you do have nothing but politicians on your commission, nobody's going to believe it. >> okay. al calling for the governor. governor, go ahead. >> no, i just -- look. i'm using a 9/11 commission, woich ihere chaired with are le hamilton as my vice chair as anm example. there are a lot ofe commissions that haven't worked.- many of the investigations ongr you're talkinges about were noti commissioned investigations but congressional investigations. congress has alot of o problem those because they're very highly structured to congress. they have a lot of things to do. the committees get very partisan. i'm talking about something quite peopl different. the 9/11 commission worked. look, we did our work. the american people accepted it. the report we wrote is still a s college textbook in w colleges,o nobody questioned it. and we made recommendations,
which made had a the american p safer. we haven't had anrganize attac 9/11 since because we reorganized the whole intelligence system in this country to make us safer. i'm saying this is such a ion, y serious event that that kindou effort is need and the kind of recommendations to keep our country safer. >> your commission, you mentioned 41 recommendations. how many of those ot recommendations were acted upon? >> 40.ss did n the only one that wasn't acted on was we wanted to reform the congress, and congress didn't want to reform itself.of so, that one is not acted on. 40 of them were.ment and i'll tell you, one of the largest reorganizations in the american government in history. and it worked. we haven't had a problem since. >> go ahead,the sir. >> no, i'm finished.n >> when it comes to the staff o be that will eventually be doing vo the m bulk of the work, what's e recommendation as far as numbers or money that's going to be - involved to make this happen? >> i don't think you need extensive work. in the 9/11 commission we have
staff members go to saudi arabia to investigate. we had to send them all over the world to really find out the seeds of the problems thatat occurred al quaeda and all thaty this is not -- this is narrow.kn so, you probably don't need a staff that size. but what you do need is a staffi that mirrors the commission. you don't need a staff working republican campaigns and democratic campaigns. you've got to have people who are respected for their have b expertise, who are knowledgeable, whose work can bf trusted. and if they're republicans or democrats, that's fine.of was but i don't want them that partisan.outs >> idso, as far as that's concerned then, do they have tom come outside washington and how much are the commission folks outside washington for your commission? >> some of them were' outsidede washington, some of them were inside washington. but they were all people who had done the job. they were all people who had not been involved -- here's where we made the difference. we said, look, we know most ttew people are republicans or
democrats. some independents. that'ss fine. we don't mind what party you belong to. but if you work on a recent o re campaign of any ntsort, republicans or democrats, then e we can't have you because you've been partisan too recently. f oft if you've got the expert expertise we want you. very screen that staffff hard and i was very proud of them.om >> tomeone a kean, former chairo 9/11 commission.. governor, somebody asked the question about the people that eventually will come in front of this commission, if they should be questioned under oath. >> yes. we questioned everybody under oath.ll >> from johner: in louisiana, republican line, hello. >> caller: yes, governor. i think we need a big reality t check. comparing 9/11 commission to -- this is 3,000 deaths to 2. you know, you guys have got to get -- you know, and the idea that anybody thinks this is the
going to be anything other than partisan has all been sleeping last 25 years with the media, all one side.oes not do you really think nancy pelosi is going to let anything happen that does not have a big slant to the left? if it is you guys are either on drugs or you've been asleep for about the last 30 years. but it just -- it's disgusting to hear you compare the 9/11 of 3,000 deaths with an attack on building in washington, d.c. and the last thing i have to say, the u.s. capitol is not the symbol of the democracy. democracy in this great nation exists in the hearts and minds of 350 million citizens, not some damn building.g. >> that's john. hello. thank you, john, and governor go ahead. >> john, look, i understand.t it does have survival in our
hearts. but you on th can't compare 9/1n event with the attack on the capitol. they're totally different things. what i am saying, i grew up in a washington because my father was elected to the united states congress. i grew up to revere that capitoe because i remember walking around it and you could see slave clay sat and webster sat. you could see where john quincy adams made a speech attacking slavery, a place where brooks attacked sumner. you see -- and i knew. i knew the people they now named buildings after. i remember sam ray burn coming to my house. i remember everett dirksen saying at our house. so, i've taken my grandchildren around there.n. and as you see the events in ree american history happen, you an revere the democracy because of the way they happened andway y survival of this country. i'm not saying they're similar
events in any way at all. what i'm saying the capitol represents to many people our democracy not only here but around the world. and the way it was violated mad me sick to my stomach, and i can think that was true of aot lot americans. so, i think you've got to get to the bottom of it.seat tha you can't have a democracy if the people who represent that democracy are under attack.rk. you just can't. >> we talked about the role of the support staff that will doo g thethis work. give -- at least in your of thec experience, what's the job of the chairman during this process and what are the jobs of the members of the commissiong the themselves? >> well t job of the chairman is simply to make sure you're doine the job right. spear the thing. we had nine great people. four of them reported by democrats -- five reported by democrats, four record by republicans. the president.by the job is to steer the commission to make sure it doesn't go off course.what
now, that's a balancing act.peoe you've got the press nipping atp your heels, you've got the congress wants to know what's going on, you've got the american people. you've got to bring them along. thu've got to use the subpoena power wisely. and you've got to always keep the mandate in mind.ay, lee hamilton, my vice chair and i, used to go all the time to the members and say what are the facts. what are the reports facts? werr let's get back to the facts.they and when we were writing the report we found out a lot of the things people were arguing over were not the facts. they were the adjectives. so, we took out the adjectives. and all of a sudden everything was a lot less controversial. >> this is allen, democrats line in brooklyn, new york. allen, hello. >> caller: good morning, i'm honored to speak with governor kean. peopl one of my pointse here is abou not just the fact you're looking
for people who are no longer actively ambitious to that advancing in office, but there's a very big difference between the kinds of crod those public have in the young crop of that i elected officials today and those that were raised before e the fairness doctrine ended. and since i believe that is part of the reason that these events happened, i'm wondering can we not have an artificial cap on e the range of history you can look at as relating to the events of 1/6? because i believe on the passing of rush limbaugh who was the product of the end of the fairness doctrine, the ability to spew one side vitriol on the public air waves without having opposing viewpoints, that began the trend that was transferred into the internet where you had silo of totally internal discussion, self-reinforcing echo chambers where no one heard opposing viewpoints.
and rumors and lies could spread rapidly to the point where individuals became like dry grass where terrible ideas coul spread rapidly and overcome individual will. so, that's one point here that, can we look back far enough to examine thech roots of these kis of negative changes in the earlier policy changes? >> gotgu you. that's allen there in brooklyn. governor, go ahead. >> allen, you've got a -- you've hit one of the problems of this democracy right now because i o gave a talk the other day and one of the questions i asked was, can you have a real democracy if there's no unified lead source of information? now, i'm old. i grew up at a time of walter cronkite. walter cronkite said something, everybody believed it. that was the news. then you argued yourve that facts off the news. we don't have that anymore. there are very few people in journalism today who have full s credibility. so, that's -- youou put your esa
finger on ati real problem. but i don't think that can stop us from going ahead with this st kind ofhe investigation. and, youthin know, that's anoth whole problem which i think would be a very good problem foe you to address in this program in the future. to tr >> to thatan end, governor then what are the best practices you1 would1 advise when it comes to transparency of this commission's work? >> in the 9/11 commission we ha. public hearings. we often called witnesses. we made it public even when we called big witnesses. we called condy rice who was inp officeub at the time at the cenr of foreign policy for this ised. country. in a public hearing held in the united states capitol.ke and it was televised. so, we -- and as we found out things, we'd make them public so that the public was able to follow our investigation step by step. and we gotion. criticism.lly we got praise.came t
but we took all that into consideration as we moved ahead with thethe investigation. so, when we finally finished ane came to a conclusion, the people had come along with us.we so, they knew what we had found. they knew how we had done it, and they knew why we had come t: the conclusion we did.do by the time we made the report,r it was supported by 70% or 80% of the american people.l >> how do you feel social media will impact this commission's work and also being televised?-i >> well, social media impacts everything, but you have got to be, to my mind, totally transparent. everybody's got to know what you're doing every step of the . way. criticizedd and that's just fine. that's what democracy is all about. but you've got to be f transparent. you can't bring peopleu' along you're doing everything in ing e secret. and this is something i thinkngi politics have got tosa learn. you've got to bring people along with you. they can agree with you or e wih disagree with you, but they understand what you're doing. hv and as you go along and they t p follow you long enough, they get
confidence. once they have confidence in what you're doing, you can get support. >> let's here from sean, lakeland, florida, independent line. go ahead. >> caller: yes, sir, you s said you wanted theon facts.ary 6. it seems some odd -- some very odd things went on on january 6th. my spidey sense went off when i was looking at it on the news for six seconds. shot so one thing, on january 5th, the y court had just ruled that it waa okay for the police to shoot a guy in the back because he had a knife in his hand. but yet not one police officer fired a shot that day when fellow officers was getting beat with poles, get fire extinguishers throwed at them. you had the police open the gate. how all of that stuff -- on top of that, how can a congressionae laptop get stolen and y'all not know where it is when i can buyh anat iphone and somebody steal and i know exactly where it is.t are these theo kind of things that you're going to find out? i think this is way deeper than
people are trying to make it seem. and everybody wanted to blame trump, and i am by far not a ths trump fan, but i think that, you know, this is way bigger than him. there's no way he --ident. thatf this happened by accident.govern it's not like a perfect storm. >> okay. okay. than from lakeland, there's your thought. governor, gotions ahead. >> the questions you raise, the questions are going to be peo raised. that's the way you have to have an investigation and one that the people have faith in. the results will go -- the facts will go wherever the facts lead and hopefully we'll make this recommendations to make sure it never happens again. >> holland, michigan, this is ,n ryan. next up, democratsts line.k you hi. >> caller: hi. f thanks for having me on. have a sir, thanks for your work, first of all. thanks for c-span. my degree is in economics, but i'm also very familiar with the events of 9/11. i do not appreciate your report
you guys put out.9/11 there is a book called "9/11 commission omissions and distortions." among the chief ones is you do not explain how the building rt fell down. the commission stops its reporting at the initiation of s collapse.co >> caller, don't want to revisit history, but you know as far as the question for commission beingou wan looked at the janua, do you have something specific to that?p the >> caller: yeah, i'm wondering if when it comes to january 6th, when i'm also interested in, if you're going to stop the timeline at a similar point, let's say when the first protesters get inside the capitol? >> that's ryan there in holland, michigan. to that point, governor, then as jar as a scope of looking at the events of what happened, amine previous caller brought it up too. do you look at just the event of january 6th, and how far do you go back to examine the scope of things that led up to it? >> you go back as far as you
have to. in 9/11 commission, we went back to the formation of al quaeda to find out some of the ideas that were permeating behind the actual events that eventually happened in the attack. c so, we had no restraints. the congress didn't put any handcuffs on us and say look at this event. i think you said it like a string. it ld notunwinds and you followm long as it unwinds until you get the facts. how did so, i wouldn't put any constraints in this commission. i would say, look, bottom line is how did it happen? why did it happen? and make recommendations so it doesn't happen again.n. >> one morere call from sarasot florida. mary helen is next, republican line. >> caller: good morning. i'm happy to hear that you'll be looking at the foundation, and i do think that you need to c
explain to us why the capitol was unprepared. seems to me only chief's son has been the one that has paid the price for the failure of law enforcement to protect the capitol. they're supervised by the capitol police board, and thoses are elected members of congress and the senate and the sergeant of arms from the house and fromd the senate. and the.c guard mayor, mayor bo d.c. and the d.c. national guard unit, we need to know if they t all had advanced knowledge and why did they fail to act?r this and as far as going through theo foundation, you know, we've had riots over the summer. 25 people have died.ave $1.5 billion of damage. that ideology and those lawless actions have to also be investigated and examined because it's all one in the gue:
same. >> okay. one tha maryellen, thank you. >> of an maryellen, you ask a v very important question, one that's going to be at the heart of any investigation. why was the capitol so thinly defended? we knew allan a these people wed washington. if it had been a -- if it had ne been an athletic event, a super bowl, there would have been many more policemen ready because of the crowds. and they weren't. they weren't there. was there advanced notice? some people said some people had notice there was intent for violence. we don't know that. but people said there might have been. well, if not, if there was, where were the policemen? where were the national guard? where were the people that pl should have been defending thee capitol when they saw them marca from the white house to the capitol? hopefully people thought it wase going to be w peaceful, but een peaceful or not with that many n people coming toward the capitol, where were the police? and it shouldn't have been thate thinly defended. so, why that was and how it toa
happened, that's going to be ths heart of the investigation. >> governor, have you been asked to be part of this effort? >> no, i think i would like a - i would like a fresh crew. we've done our job. but i think we can be an example because our report was accepted and is accepted still. but no, i think it's time for -- the president calls you, almosth never say e no, but i think it' time for flesh blood. >> tom kean who served as the governor of unanimously nj and the chair of the 9/11 commission. thank you for your time today. >> thank you. weeknights this month we're featuring american history tv programs as a preview of what's available every weekend on c-span3. tonight a conversation between benjamin franklin and thomas jefferson. they talk about their roles in shaping revolutionary war era america and the constitutional government it produced. watch tonight beginning at 8:00 p.m. eastern and