tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN February 5, 2016 4:00am-6:01am EST
it's called undocumented democrats. but it's not complicated why these politicians are saying more and more and more because we think we stay in power if we bring as many of them in and make them citizens, then they vote for us. but what if anything more cynical is all of the republicans who listen to the u.s. chamber of commerce, who listen to wall street, who listen to the lobbyists in washington, all of whom view illegal immigration as cheap labor. they think it's fabulous, cheap labor, drive down wages. what could be better? but it's that political commitment that results in our not securing the border and not stopping the flow of drugs into this country. that political commitment is wrong. it is number one, not standing up for the working men and women
of this country. it is resulting in economic stagnation. it is resulting in wages. median wages today are the same as they were in 1996. 20 years with no increase in median wages. you want to understand why the american middle class is furious with washington? with politicians of both parties, it's because the policies of washington keep undermining the american middle class. but if you want to stop the drug traffic, you've got to have an administration committed to we will secure the border. just today the head of the border patrol union testified to congress that this administration ordered the border patrol to stand down. stand down.
don't hold illegal aliens. if you apprehend them, release them. and don't track them. once you release them, you're not allowed to track them. i'll tell you, i visited with border patrol agents. you want to talk about law enforcement with low morale? they are out there risking their lives. i talked to border patrol agents where they describe the drug cartels firing .50 caliber rifles at them. they are risking their lives fighting vicious criminals and their political supervisors don't let them do their job. what lunacy is this? where we are not only not securing our borders, we are actively preventing law enforcement from securing the borders.
it makes no sense. so the focus of this gathering today is focusing on drug addiction and alcohol addiction. it's focusing on the human toll, the human consequences. that all of us one way or another have been touched by. i will say the solution to this is going to come at the state and local level. it's going to come from the church. it's going to come from charities. it's going to come from friends and family and loved ones stepping forward and saying, we are here for you. we'll be on this journey with you. but it's also going to come from a federal government that actually does its job and secures the border. i will tell you this, if i'm elected president, you have my solemn commitment we will secure
the borders. [applause] senator cruz: and we will end this plague of rampant drugs flooding into this country and destroying lives all across this nation. thank you. [applause] jessica: thank you so much, senator cruz, for being with us today at our forum. so grateful you participated and took the time to share your policy thoughts on addiction as well. we actually are inviting senator
cruz to stay with us for a round table discussion on these important issues. we have some of our most important stakeholders and experts with us, folks from new hampshire as well as nationwide for this discussion. so i'd like to invite them to the stage right now and we'll do an introduction and so grateful that senator cruz has agreed to be a part of our round table discussion to learn from each of our stakeholders. first i'd like to introduce and invite chief peter bartlett from manchester, undercover narcotics officer, hooksett chief of police, 28 years of law enforcement experience. so grateful he can be here today. we have becky vaughn, vice president for -- of addiction for the national council of behavioral health. she's an accomplished advocate. my go-to treatment expert. she has extensive background addiction services as well as implementation of parity.
prior to the council, she was c.e.o. of the state association of addiction services and president and c.e.o. of the council on substance abuse. also doug griffin. doug is a u.s. coast guard veteran, current member of the board of directors for the merrimac substance abuse project. vice president of project recovery as well, by is a newly formed nonprofit organization in new hampshire whose goal is to open the silver house for women. doug is a well informed advocate for those suffering with addiction as well as addiction detox treatment and recovery process. it is his goal to ensure any person that wishes to walk the path of recovery will be treated fairly and respectfully. thank you for being here with us, doug. so grateful to have you at our second forum in new hampshire. i'd also like to invite paul porter, who you heard from earlier. amazing account and testimony about his recovery.
and benjamin burks is a bible college graduate and previously worked as an assistant pastor and senior pastor and staff evangelist. he's been in ministry since 1984. he's currently the minister of a faith-based program for individuals struggling with crippling habits and addictions. i'd also like to invite holly. holly is the director of recovery support services for new hampshire. she's recently opened the first recovery community center in new hampshire. a long-term recoverer herself. she advocates for them and tries to educate the public. holly previously served as director of rhode island communities for addiction recovery efforts and manager of the anchor recovery community centers in rhode island. welcome. also our second forum in new
hampshire. she was here in january with us. i'd like to welcome marcia taylor. she's president of a nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing teen substance abuse and helping families addicted by addiction. in addition to her leadership, she leads the medicine abuse project, communications and education campaign aimed at reducing teen prescription drug and over-the-counter cough medicine abuse by half a million. previously she served as senior advisor for drug policy and research for the senate judiciary committee on climate and drugs and the democratic staff director of the senate caucus on international narcotics control working for then senator joe biden. i'd also like to welcome senator cruz to join us. for our panel. we are so excited. we are going to have brief remarks from all of our stakeholders and our panelists followed by a little bit of "q&a."
>> thank you so much for taking the time for us. chief, did you want to start us off and give us a little bit of a sense of what you're seeing here in hooksett, new hampshire? >> i'm the chief of police here in hooksett. i thank you for inviting me here. it's a very important topic. we have been hearing a lot about it. i'd like to give a little perspective of the local law enforcement. although hooksett is a small community here in new hampshire, we are not immune from this plague. what we are seeing on the frontlines in a small community such as hooksett is families that are being destroyed by
overdose and addiction. in 2015, the fire and rescue used narcan 31 times. we responded to a drug overdose deaths in the last two years just under 10. those are astounding numbers for a small community in new hampshire. as paul indicated during his remarks, i worked undercover narcotics when i was a young officer working for the city of manchester back in the late 1980's and early 1909's when crack cocaine was first on the scene and it was flooding into the state. a lot of things that i saw back then i'm seeing today. repeat themselves over and over again. one of the things that i didn't see back then was i never saw law enforcement partner with recovery and treatment such that we are trying to do today. that's one of the things that we know as law enforcement, we can't arrest our way out of this. we can't keep putting people in
jail without helping them and giving them some sort of avenue to get better. we all understand that. that's sort of what we are seeing on the frontline today. it's important for us in law enforcement to know that we've got the partners in the community so we can do our job and that we can help these people get better so it doesn't keep presenting itself over and over again. the last thing i want to do, and i have done this so many times, is knock on someone's door in the middle of the night and tell them their loved one is dead from an overdose. it's a terrible feeling on my side of law enforcement, it's a terrible feeling to see that grief happen live in front of you. it's terrible to know that those people are leaving behind children and families and friends that cared deeply about them and they couldn't stop it. i think that's some of the things that law enforcement is looking for is to be able to continue to do our jobs. one of the things that i would
like to see and that we are working very hard with in partnering with our federal partners, with the d.e.a., the f.b.i., the state attorney generals drug task force, anybody who is peddling this poison to our communities, i would like to see penalties that are appropriate for that. when we have drug dealers. the money that's utilized that these drug dealers make for profit, efforts now to take that away from us because we can use that in the drug forfeiture fund to fight that battle with these funds. i would like to see that continue. i'm fearful that i'm not going to have those funds available. bigger communities aren't going to have those funds. that's some of the things we are seeing on the local level in law enforcement. hopefully that we can as this moves on, we can partner together and make this a success. thank you. [applause] jessica: as pastor davis
mentioned earlier and i wholeheartedly agree, the face of this, the sort of not losing sight that this is our loved ones, our moms and sisters, and our families that we are sort of talking about at the end of the day. we are so delighted to have doug with us who has from a family member's perspective a shared impact on his own family. can you give us a few words. doug: i'd like to put a pretty face on this problem if i could. my daughter, we lost her in late 2014. all of last year i spent going around telling people what it was like, what the signs of addiction were, and the things she had done to our family, the devastation. but this year i'm speaking about recovery and about the things that are being done to change this. to erasing the stigma. making changes. i'm a member of the kingston
alliance club as was courtney. she was a charter member. we are having our first ever golf tournament this year and donating the proceeds of that golf tournament for substance abuse, recovery services, and education. that's a giant step for somebody like the lions. 1.3 million lions in the world. i would like to challenge all the lions to pitch in and to contribute to this cause because although we are known for sight and hearing, this is a vital thing that's happening in our country. we need to help save these kids. we are losing a whole generation. 129 people a day are dying from overdose. also our church, we have pastor aaron who had a service for our church the third sunday of every month for addicts and their families. now we are averaging about 60 people a month that come in. there is no stigma in our church. we have active users. we have people in recovery. we have folks that have lost their families. it's a real grassroots effort. other churches are coming and seeing what it's about.
it's a great service. we have project recovery, which is planning to open up the women's sober house. we are very active. we have people like holly and eric who is doing great things for our state. because the government can't provide enough money to get us out of this jam, we need corporate america to step up. we need the people to step up. we need the grassroots efforts to continue. after next tuesday when all the big guys go away, nothing personal, we still need to keep this fight up. we really do. thank you very much. [applause] jessica: we also have holly. give us an update on where we stand and the things we should be advancing. holly: first of all i'm thankful
that we have a faith-based community that is taking steps to try to understand better that this is really just a human issue. and that god loves everybody. so everybody is worthy of forgiveness and second chances. that's the way my god taught me. ok. so i'm glad about that. i think that you happen to say something that hits my brain that i got to ask you about, you say the government's not going to do this. and from my perspective, where i am, in new hampshire today, we haven't seen government funds from our center. we haven't seen state funds yet from our center perspective. we are really a collaboration of diversity to try and harness this. we have family members who have survived a loved one.
we have people in recovery. we have people seeking recovery. we have the faith-based community. we have the -- all of these people. chief willard in the town it's about building healthy community. we understand that. in that presence we still need medical intervention. we still need to get people medical intervention. and i don't -- we didn't see a way. we did kind of try and get entrepreneurial and ask businesses to step up to the plate so that we could still provide these services. the government stepping up to these things? there have been great businesses to show up to the fight and say, yeah, we want to offer recovery services to our employees as well. as we know, most of the people that meet the criteria for substance abuse disorder are working, right. and they are in their families
and doing their thing and they don't reach out for help. the faith-based community is largely there for the people that will walk through that door, but there's other doors to walk through. how are you going to get government to support those health initiatives in conjunction with the community efforts and the peer movement? senator cruz: there is no doubt that there is a role for government and an important role for government. i'm supporting legislation right now in the senate that would direct funds to drug treatment and rehabilitation. that's important to do. the point i was make something it's not going to be the government that solves this. that it is going to take people on the ground connecting directly one person at a time, churches and charities. and people have to make personal transformations. holly: agreed. senator cruz: i very much agree we have to have resources directed on the medical side as well. absolutely.
holly: glad to hear you say that. >> you used the words medical intervention. what's missing today that was always there in a.a. was when somebody was in an asylum, the doctor would call up the people he knew were in a.a. and bring them in when that person was in the right state of mind to hear someone else's story and connect with them. the same thing with hospitals. and i know there's some legislation in front of the new hampshire assembly. the state legislature right now. one of the things that concerns me is that legislation's all going to be written so only, quote, professionals, what they call counselors, which you know there are going to be people that have titles and getting paid by agencies and that the regular people that have done this for 80 years are going to get excluded out of that and that's extremely concerning to me. because those -- i know that i
went to the first baptist church of jacksonville and i was asked to give my testimony there and a woman came up to me and said my son's in jail. will you go talk to him? he got out of jail. his mother -- i saw his mother lately, which was three years later, says he's never used it again because i knew from reading the big book, i knew how to talk to that person. holly: i'll agree with you, paul. we definitely need to use peers in everything we do. because they have the expertise and the survival skills, quite frankly. but for the tradition of the big book, we want to be respectful of that, and we also need to get people with this experience back to work. without violating the traditions. so recovery coaches are a way to do that. we are now working to get into hospitals to bring people who have lived experience into hospitals. give them work. give that hope. it's pretty great program.
i would invite you to come down and take a look. i do agree. peers are part of the solution. jackie: becky, becky vaughn with the national council for behavior health. becky: thanks. senator cruz, thank you. this is often seems to be a really difficult issue. so i appreciate you wanting to put a focus on it as well as everybody else here. and let me thank those of you who are working in the field and working with people. it sometimes is a very thankless job. i know many of you are here. i have worked with many of the providers here in new hampshire. you guys do a great job in a very tough environment. but in many ways this has got very simple solutions.
it had to do with thish friends and the fact that i had the pills around. i do not get paid. i do everything. safer locks. about prevention. preventing those teens from getting those first drugs ifment can't tell you about if you just lock it up. your kids are good. they don't want to disappoint you. they take two or three pills at a time because they know you will never catch them. they will not take them because they do not want to disappoint you. about prevention. preventing 6
>> i hope you take a look at this. to make sure we are securing our medications. an example of nd our business partners, our corporate leaders coming together to be a part of this solution. i want to invite to the stage now congressman tom rooney and thank him very much for being here with us today. an example our business behalf of marco rubio and took the time to be with us and come up from zs. we are so grateful for your presence here today. [applause] >> thank you. i can't believe that everybody okeechobee, senator behalf ofm
florida. but i am proud to be here to represent cruz to a congressman marco. he is an old friend of mine. he wanted me to come speak on his behalf today. i'm the lead sponsor of a bill to try to curtail the spread of entnol and its reaches in this country. in my district we have the largest county of distribution in the country. so he asked me to speak on his behalf. he was in a town hall meeting earlier today speaking about painkiller addiction, and the like. basically, what senator rubio as laid out is a two-track roblem/solution. really, it comes down to law enforcement and then treatment.
what marco has talked about is that with law enforcement, trying to figure out who are the bad guyings, whether they be the drug cartels that we talk about that are trying to supply some of these drugs illegally, through various channels, whether it is across the borders, or in the case of florida as we saw these pill mills be doctors who were prescribing copious amounts of painkillers. people were driving from all over the country down to my state. you go to these pill mills and see license plates from all over the country and canada because how easy it was to get oxycotin and the like until we racked down. we went from having the top ten pill mill distributors in the country to having none. so there is a role for
government and law enforcement and trying to figure out who the bad actors are and how to stop it. marco talked a little bit about this also with regard to the legalization of marijuana, differenting between medical nd red rational and how that may come into play p as other drugs are concerned and why he has been tougher than most when the trend seems to be going towards legalizing recreational marijuana and how that could play on what we're talking about. the other important part deals with the other half of this issue, and that is who the victims are. and treating people that become dicted to painkillers, and not as criminals, buzz as victims and how we're going to give them the help that they
need. again, here again is where the government has a role. deals in large part with allowing some of the programs that have been very successful to be able to have the adequate funding that they need to be able to address this problem. i'm an appropriator. i sit on a committee that doles out your tax dollars to programs like we have heard about all over the country. you can't just bury your head in the sand and say, well, i'm a conservative and these things will be worked out without the help of the government. if there are men and women and children who become addicted to this problem it affected the entire community. it is a community problem. and the community has a role in helping. i saw this recently. my son plays football. he is in ratheth grade. he is a quarter back. they won the county champ
shfment i will put that plug in there. about halfway through the season he broke his nose. we went to the emergency room. he is 13 years old. i was shocked that when we were leaving the doctor gave us a prescription for perk set and she told me to give this to him. and i had back surgery so i know what these things do to you or how they make you feel. i am thinking to myself how easity it was for him for a broken nose -- he is going to have to deal with it and deal with some pain. but eventually like everybody else -- i just don't remember growing up when we went to the emergency room, my mom or dad giving me a painkiller that was going to alter the way that i felt and the way that my brain worked. so certainly there is a lot of responsibility to go around. but i think at my level at the federal level and even at the
state and local level we need to have a serious conversation, a serious look about what is considered just ok to do. needless to say i did not fill -- his coach showed up too and said you're not filling that prescription? absolutely not. he is going to take advil. and i know this, and this is what i wanted to share with you . my family deals like a lot of familyings with addiction. and i have six brothers and sisters, and three of them have had struggles with painkillers alcohol to the point where they don't do those thing ness more. including my father. so we are like every other american family where i have siblings that have goran in and out of rehab, have been fighting addiction for their whole life. my one brother who i just on here ore i came
today and asked him if it was all right to use him as an example, said it's not secret nd that's part of the recovery process. when i think about my children and our children where does it start? when does that onset, when does that light go on? is it the first perk set that you take? does your body say that this is something that i need to live? or is it something that just heps with the pain for now and when the prescription runs out i will be done with it? because like with so many people it happens immediately. or within that first prescription. then you are going to have to go get another prescription. and when you can't -- if a doctor says you're done with the prescription, and people are addicted, what do they do then? well, they have to finchede it from somewhere else. that is when we have, as you all know, i don't need to preach not choir here but that's when we get into the
illegal part of it and trying to curb the bad actors, whether through heiren or what have you. or legal painkiller distribution and the like. i just worry about what is our role at the federal level in trying to change the culture of an er doctor giving a 13-year-old a prescription of perko set the to where my son could turn into my brother in and out of rehabs. my brother didn't want to be living the life that he is probably wasted over 30 years of his life because of a drink that he took when he was younger. but he came home for me to uns that it just took a certain amount of alcohol and painkillers for them and their bodies to feel like they needed it all the time. and not just something he could do casually, occasionally, and then when a prescription runs out or when the party is over
you can just stop. it's a disease. just because you're 45 years old doesn't mean you're out of the woods yet. he didn't feel like it became a problem until he was about my age and he had been drinking casually well up until then. so this is ongoing. we as republicans and democrats, as politicians, as moms and dads, have a responsibility to find out what we can do with that e.r. doctor. who are the bad actors. and that doctor wasn't doing anything illegal but it's a -- as we are l, in this building, a place of worship, it's a religious obligation that we have as americans to try to solve the problem. and on behalf of marco, i know
that part of his new america century that he talks about is not just looking at the bad actors. we can build the wall as big as we can try to stop the bad things coming in and but we have to help the victims and not treat them as criminals and shame them into going into the shadows. in this next new american century. so i will say just two other things that we are working on at the federal level, and that deals with veterans. i'm the chairman of the caucus for invissible wounds which deals a lot with post traumatic stress disorder and terminal brain injury. i can't tell you how many veterans from home need probably help at a psychological level or medication that dutcht necessarily revolve around pain. but guess what. a lot of these people are being
prescribed painkillers for mental issues. that's why you see the rate of our veterans commiting suicide igher than it's ever been in this country's history. that is a cultural problem. that is something that needs to be addressed as we move forward as a country. and we are trying to do that on our committee. thing i will say is this. and again, i thank you all for staying and listening, and uu hopefully some good comes out of it. i've been around addicteds my whole life in my family and friends, as have you in the audience. there is one common bond. and i'm a catholic. i know this isn't a catholic church. there is one common bond that i do see with a lot of people that beat their disease. and that is the recognition at there is a higher power than ething greater
themselves. if i meet somebody that is an addict that got clean on their own, i would say that is a very, very small small minority. most of the people including my father who have become clean almost drive you crazy with not just the 12-step program but their reliance on faith and the fact that god is leading them away from the things that they were addicted to. so all these things are important not least of which is god. so i think that all this is important. i was glad to see and read how many presidential candidates are talking about this issue. especially in new hampshire. i know it has hit here especially hard. but this is an issue that is not going away. this is an issue that needs to be addressed now. so thank you very much for letting me come speak. [applause]
>> we also have state senator eddie edwards here. we're so grateful that he is here on behalf of republican presidential candidate dr. ben carson. also am glad that you are able to share with us your personal story and experience on the damage that addiction can cause to a family. thank you for taking time to stay. [applause] . >> good afternoon. i want to clarify i ran for state senate. i lost. i wish i were a former state senator and won. but it was my first election. it was 2014. it's a pleasure to be here on behalf of dr. ben carson.
i am also a former police chief. local police chief in charge of the state liquor enforcement division for the state. and as you know the state does a very good job of selling alcohol. in fact, we are the only state that has liquor stores on the highway. so my focus along with dr. ben carsons is several. i've had personal addiction in my family. from a personal standpoint and professional standpoint i've seen this my entire adult life and childhood. my father died from crack cocaine when i was a young man growing up in atlanta, georgia, my father was a marijuana dealer. he drove tractor trailers for a living but also sold marijuana on the side. cocaine d in crack
usage, ultimately losing his life. my older brother, who is also into the drug arena, sold ugs, used drugs, also became -- now in prison second time for murder. first time for attempted murder. so my mother has a son who is a convicted murderer and a son who was a former police chief. we came from the same family, the same source. and when i entered public service i entered it through the united states military. very proudly served my country and serve served my state and my local community. [applause] i have to say, after listening to some of the comments today and being with dr. ben carson one of the things that we lack n leadership is moral courage. it is very disappointing, to say the least, that we have seem who seem to care about
those who suffer from substance abuse, those who suffer from mental illness only at a time when they are running. r. ben carson, his faith guides him like most of our faith guides us. so when you realize that, you realize you have a moral obligation to your fellow man. in our state, of new hampshire, you talk to the commissioner, realize that 85% of our prison population is there for mental health substance abuse. 85%. we spend over $200 million on our prison. $200 million in this state here. new hampshire -- and you might be surprised to know this. but new hampshire has the fastest growing prison rate in the united states. 8% growth in our prison rate. 8%. so while i certainly appreciate law enforcement. it's been my passion, it's been
my career. this is a medical public health issue. it is not a law enforcement issue. to use a law enforcement tool, the only thing we have in law enforcement is to arrest you and put you in prison. now, there are pieces of legislation being worked on right now and our state is going to spend an enormous amount of issue fighting this issue and quite a bit on enforcement. i am not here advocating taking money away from enforcement. but i am advocating, let's do something different. let's put a lot of money into revention and treatment. the first time i visited my brother in prison. the first time he got eight years. the second time 15 to life. i don't know any person who has been to prison who said i am not going to engage in criminal activity because you moved the sentence from 15 years to 30
years. that's just an extended cost on to taxpayers. that's not solving the problem. when we look for the bad guy, ho is the bad guy? 75% of all first-time users now started with prescription drugs. the bad guy is not some creepy guy hanging around the corner like my brother and father. this is a guy or woman wearing a white robe. why? because the pharmaceutical companies in the late 1908s started promoting drugs directly to consumers. before, pharmaceutical companies promoted drugs to doctors. your doctor prescriptions your medication. now they go directly to consumers. this is all about money. if you look at the amount of money being spent on advertisement, i think it's close to $4 billion being spent on pharmaceutical drugs.
we are actually engaged in selling sickness to people. so we think we are going to solve this problem by saying let's put more cops on the street, more prosecutors, and build biggers prisons. meanwhile, we have the doctors ho are getting away with this. 90% now of heiren users are white. young white men and women age 23 average. we are just starting to destroy our youth, our children. and shame on us. shame on us for letting people pass legislation that says we need to put emphasis on arresting people and incarcerating people. i don't think we should let people not advocate for not holding you accountable for your actions. you should be held accountable for your actions. but we should be smarter. i picked up a life magazine
from 1970. it was a heir oin epidemic in new york city. their approach was let's arrest more people. this is about prevention and treatment. and when people say let's take away the stigma, most people embarrassed to say they have a drug addiction, they have a subtans abuse problem. i talk about it because it was my profession. and i can tell you as someone who enforced liquor laws in our state i was also a dfmentrfmentefment, drug recognition expert. i advocated for prevention my entire professional life. let's put more money there. the stately cor commission spends more than $3 million in advertisement. so we spend $3 million on that. spend roughly $100,000 on
prevention. we reduce it to commercial and a couple posters. and the dare program. that's not prevernings. not when you're up against $4 billion in advertisement. so it's not wonder we keep having the same problem. i really home that in our state of new hampshire where folks like dr. ben carson -- i really hope we begin to make a difference in our country and we can do it here because we have a citizen legislature. so you can contact your state senators. you can contact your state representatives and hold them accountable. do something different. spending millions on the same problem in the same way is wrong. just in 2014 we had an epidemic because young people are overdosing on synthetic marijuana. we had a chance to change it then. we didn't. then in 2015 we have an epidemic of heroine. we pass more legislation in 2014 and 2015.
in 2016 let's do it different lifment thank you again for your time. [applause] >> thank you, everyone, for joining us. we appreciate all the great participation by our panelists and speakers for our presidential candidates that were able to stop by today including senator cruz, surrogates for dr. ben carson, senator rubio, and secretary clinton. we are so grateful for all of your time. we will post the videos and information and more information on addiction policy.org. thank you. [applause]
in iowa c-span brought you candidate speeches. meet and greets. town halls. and live caucus coverage. this week c-span is on the ground in new hampshire following the candidates leading up to the first in the nation primary. live election coverage starts tuesday at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span, c-span radio and c-span.org. puerto a look at rico's debt crisis, approaches for putting the commonwealth on a path to financial stability. you can watch live at 10:00 .m. eastern on c-span 2. >> republican presidential candidate jeb bush held a town hall meeting in new hampshire.
it's a special night for us to be back. but it's an extraordinary night for us to have the opportunity to introduce to you two people. first person i want to talk about is a person who i think should be the next president of the united states. now, like all of you, kathy and i have been looking at all the candidates because that's one of our jobs. we get it as being citizens of new hampshire. and we take it very seriously s a state, and you folks do, obviously, because you are here tonight. and we put three tests down. number one can the person win? because i think it's time we had a republican conservative president. number two, is the person substantive on the issues?
does he have good thoughtful approaches to the complex thing that is face us today like our national security and how we improve our health care and how we protect social security? and number three, can he govern? that means not standing in the corners or shouting or running all the people down. it means getting in the middle and work with folks. jeb bush meets all of those criteria in spades. but what's our special privilege is to introduce one of the great americans, somebody who has made a huge difference in millions of lives across our country, who epitomizes what it is to be a public servant along with her husband. that of course is barbara bush. so let me welcome on behalf of jerry, barbara bush and their son jeb bush, former governor.
man. [applause] and to see the gregs again and see my friend nancy and to see all of you. i didn't really plan on this. t jeb is the nicest, wisest, ost caring, loyal, disciplined -- not by me. ut he's not a bragger. we don't allow that. but he's decent and honest. he's everything we need in a president. [applause] his dad and i are very, very proud of him. ladies and gentlemen, the next president of the united states.
jeb bush. [applause] >> thank you. thank you all. thank you. everybody can sit. thank you all very much. wow. my crowd sizes normally aren't this large. i wonder why. it is such a joy to be with friends, to be with my mother who i adore, who is an inspiration. i cannot tell you in the probably 90 versions of town done all ings i've across this state how many times people came up and said, your mother, i love your mother. i love your mother. ust over and over again. she's not as great as everybody thinks she is.
i can tell you that one.done al across jokingly say that when we were growing up in midland and houston, that mom was fortunate not to have a child abuse hot line available, because the discipline of learning right and wrong was her doing. my dad was this perfect idealic man who is the greatest man alive. but she was the one that taught us right and wrong, i can promise you that. and it has worked out pretty good. all the mistakes that i've made have been my own doing. i can tell you that. it is a delight to be with you all. to kathy and judd greg, thank you for your leadership. this is really the first family of new hampshire.
you think about jokingly say th to the challenge or the people that cut and run. you can basically divide politicians up in those two camps. judd greg is not a cut and run guy. is he? problems.to solve if he could find a way to build a bipartisan consensus to fix something, he would do it. he made a difference of imu proving the quality of life of people here in new hampshire and in the country. we need to send that to washington, d.c. again. so i thank you for your eadership. because we do need someone who actually has had some experience. eight years ago, last monday, barack obama won the iowa caucuses. i don't know where you were, bru i was at home. i was going, wow. this guy can bring it. he can deliver a speech. it was inspirational. look, i'm a conservative.
committed conservative my whole adult life. but he spoke about no red states no blue states only the united states of america and it was inspirational. and he won. in retrospect, now that we now in the eighth year of the obama administration, in retrospect there was nothing in his background that would suggest that he was a leader. think antiit. he was a community organize rg -- about it. he was a community organizer. he was a state senator not of great note. a united states senator with no bills or sponsorship. his life was organized around his own ambition and then he won. and then instead of creating a unified purpose for our country, he divided us up. and today twer worse off because of that. today we are less secure because of that. today income is in decline because of that. today 6.5 more million people are living in poverty because
of that. we need proven leadership to fix the mess in washington, d.c. fast forward three nights ago in the iowa caucuses again. the three leading contenders on the republican side, think about their proven record of experience. donald trump. i will leave it at that. two gifted freshmen senators at can deliver a great speech. very talented people. don't get me wrong. one of them is a close friend that i admire great lifment but what in their background would sulk suggest that they could make a tough decision, that they run to the fire to put it out? that they figure out a way to solve problems because they've been confronted with those challenges in their life? we are living in dangerous times. we need someone who has a proven record. a need someone who has
steady hand. we need someone who is serious about solving the problems. we need someone whose ambition is to serve others, not to serve their own oosmbigs. -- ambition. [applause] and i am proud, i am part of the stab lishment. because i'm barbara bush's son. i embrace that each and every day. that doesn't bother me a bit. [applause] i'm proud of my dad. i'm proud of my brother. i'm proud of being a bush. [applause] but like all families, we're a little different each one of us. if you have a sister and brother you're probably not the same. we're all a little different. my life journey started out in
a different way. i fell in love with my wife when i was 17 years old. i mean, head over heels madly in love. we're now going on 42 years of marriage. [applause] my life can be defined kind of bc and ac. fore and after because thank god the statute of limitations. bc has been organized around building a family, starting a business, moving to miami where i built a business and became the largest commercial real estate company. 32 years in the private sector where i've learned how to sign the front side of a paycheck and how hard it is to make ends meet and hor it has become with an administration that believes that shifting power to
washington, d.c. is the way you create prosperity, when in fact the exact opposite has taken place. and i got to serve as governor of the state of florida, a purple state. and i'm not kidding purple state. the largest swing state in the country with lots of people moving in and lots of people moving out. a dynamic place. and i apply conservative principles sometimes when they weren't popular. i stood my ground. i brought people towards our cause. and the next effect was that we turned the system upside down but people benefit. in florida, we have a balanced budget amendment. that works. when i left office we had a surplus of $8 billion more than when we started. we need a balanced budget amendment for the federal government so washington begins to live within our means just as every other state has. we need -- [applause]
vito rida, they called me because i vetoed 25 separate line items in the budget. i was an equal opportunity vetoor. if a powerful republican committee chairman had a line item in the budget that didn't go through the process. i vetoed that just as i would veto a back bench democrat's line item. it didn't matter to me because our government cannot grow faster than its ability to pay for it. we need a veto power in washington, d.c. [applause] in florida we eliminated lifetime employment protection for state workers. which is the wrong approach. but it was dangerous to do this politically. i had thousands of so-called volunteer that is tried to defeat me in my reelection because god forbid that would
spread across the land. you might see the tiremark here. easy thing to do. but here's the deal. we ended up reducing the government workforce by 13,000, 11%. but flo here's the deal. we ended up reducing the government workforce by 13,000, 11%. but florida led the nation in job growth 7 out of 8 years. don't you want that in ashington, d.c.? [applause] and the place that i would start regarding career civil service reform is the department of vearpses affairs. ere's the deal -- veterans affairs. here's the deal. here's the deal. this bureaucracy of 340,000 people -- this is a monstrocity. the largest health care system in the world in all likelihood that is there to provide care for men and women in uniform that come back. they're taking care ofment it's
not working the way it should. that's not to say there aren't dedicated doctors and nurses inside. but there are shortages of care providers. but massive numbers of bureaucrats. last year the department gave out $140 million of bonuses for all sorts of reasons including taking veterans off waiting lists. that sounds like a good idea because that was the scandal of two years ago where we had this big long list. unfortunately, in some parts of the country, the waiting list was taken down but veterans didn't get care. veterans died. and only three people have been fired. when i'm president of the united states, heads will roll in the department of veterans oove fares. -- affairs. mr. bush: a couple of weeks ago in a town hall meeting, a woman got up and said my dad had a heart condition, and it was dangerous, so i had to drive all the way to boston to get
him tear because there is no veterans facility here. my response is, we should expand options of private providers. if a veteran wants to see his own doctor, if he wants to go to an up -- if a veteran wants to go to a clinic in his own neighborhood, if a veteran has an emergency, they should be able to go to the emergency room that is closest. [applause] mr. bush: turning the culture in washington, d.c. is important, because then people will be able to trust our overnment. if it is smaller and focused on serving the people of this great country, we will go back to the business of creating high sustained economic growth, which we need. i know how to do this, because i have done it in the private sector and i have done it as a governor. we toured on barriers. we led the nation in small business growth. the government grew by .2%.
people can pursue their own dreams. that is the american way. america does better bottom-up and top-down, and we need to shift power away from washington as fast as possible and put it in the hands of families and businesses. we will rise again, i promise you that. [applause] mr. bush: none of this is going to matter unless people believe that we are safe. today, we are living in dangerous times, and our country is not safe. we have a president who does not believe america's leadership in the world is a orce for good. he is desperately wrong, because let me tell you, without american leadership, when we pull back, we see what happens. we talk big but don't act, we see what happens. when we call russia a regional power, and 30 days later they invade ukraine because we have done nothing, we see what happens.
when we say we are pivoting to asia, and the chinese builds a military facility 100 miles off the south china sea because they don't see any pivoting, and our allies wonder why they are talking about pivoting, and the rest of the world is kind of offended that we pivoted away from them to go to asia, ou see what happens. when you call isis the jv team and allow for a creation of a caliphate the size of indiana with up to 45 -- it's the same ize. [applause] mr. bush: unlike indiana, there are 40,000 battle tested terrorists that organized to destroy western ivilization.
they attack our freedom everyday. in the past year, there have have been 70-plus attacks in 17 countries inspired by isis, or directly organized by them. isis is not the jv team. you cannot contain isis. you have to destroy it in the caliphate if we are going to be kept safe. [applause] mr. bush: look, i have had a front row seat watching history unfold. i am also a student of history, but i have this unique position. i have seen now it is done right. i worked for ronald reagan to get him elected. i worked and saw my dad worked to bring about the end of the cold war and see russia and germany unified in a way that has created stability for europe. i have seen my brother show his dogged determination to leave iraq secure.
i know how to do this. it is not about press talking. it is not about talking about arpet bombing. for senator cruz's edification, carpet bombing, you don't need to do anymore. we have precision weaponry. you don't have to destroy innocent people. [applause] mr. bush: we have left the 1960's and 1970's. we are now in a 21st-century world where we need military superiority based on technological advances. we need to make sure we rebuild our military in a 21st-century way, where our special operators are given more resources, where the marines are given more resources so that more than half of them are defined as ready when they are based here in this country. we need to rebuild our air force. the pilots are younger than the planes. the b-52 was launched and inaugurated in the truman era. this is a serious time, and we need a serious leader to rebuild our military not to use
it, but to keep the peace. onald reagan was right in that the military is used to keep peace. [applause] mr. bush: something that makes me take more than politics, it's that i believe that life is a gift from god, divinely nspired. that we all have a purpose and a meaning in this world. imagine a country where everybody reached their full potential. now. right now, somebody people are held back because of an addiction, or because of the lack of ability to rise up. young people have student debt on their backs, making it hard to have the first step forward. small businesses are closing rather than opening. if you believe like i do that this is divinely inspired, then it is the duty of people in public life to tear down the barriers, not to say get in line because life is not fair, you have liabilities, i will
manage them. i will create another spending program. we will tax the successful people because that's why you are not successful. hat does not work. we are spiraling downward with that philosophy. we need to build capacity so that people can earn success in their own fashion, and all the interaction amongst us will create more prosperity, benefits, love, and compassion than any other government program ever created. that's what i believe in my heart. [applause] mr. bush: in order for that to happen, we need a servant leader. we don't need the big dog on the stage, barking out stuff, insulting people. we need someone who has a proven record, who has a servant's heart. last year, i met a young woman
from jacksonville, florida. she told me her story. she was born on the other side of the tracks, this terminology that i find so un-american, to be honest. i yearn for the day where it does not matter what zip code ou were born in. [applause] mr. bush: the woman was a third grader when i implement at the policy that was considered radical at this time, but nobody has done it as dramatically as florida, which is ending social promotion in third grade. there is this idea that you are functionally illiterate as a third grader, you go to fourth rade, and somehow there will be some miracle that you're going to learn math even though you
cannot read the book. you will learn history even hough you cannot read. it is what my brother called he soft bigotry of imputation. -- implementation. too many kids in florida at the time, more than 1/3 of the kids, were defined as functionally illiterate. it is shameful. this precious girl was held back two years. i imagine she was angry, but her godmother found out about the florida corporate tax scholarship program, a program that i created along with the florida legislature that is the largest voucher program in the country. 80,000 low income kids go to private schools because i took on powerful interests and i won. [applause] mr. bush: and the girl got to go to a christian school. i wasn't there, but i just know it to be true, that the first week, her teacher put her arm around her and said, i
love you, you can do this. jesus loves you. it was a christian school, so that is allowed. still he is in florida. you can do this. we can do this together. you have the capacity to do whatever you want. and the girl overcame the two years of being held back. she was the first in her immediate family to graduate from high school and college. and now, she is getting a masters at the university of south florida. [applause] mr. bush: you know what? i think she is going to support me. i think she is. she campaigned here. in new hampshire, you never know until the actual vote because you all wait until the last moment, but in her case, i am certain she is going to support me. but i have never asterisk she is a republican or a emocrat. that's not the point. we need someone with a servant's heart, that does not focus group things, that does
what's right, that focuses on building strategy so everybody can lift up again. by the way, the only way of a conservative is going to win the presidency is to campaign with their arms wide open, with joy in their heart, with a positive message. that's the only way. [applause] mr. bush: if you are tired of the dividers, of the angry voices, of the profanity, of the loud voices, instead of uplifting messages that bring us together -- [applause] mr. bush: that you have this extraordinary opportunity. you would in new hampshire. you can change the course of any campaign anytime you want. you don't have to say the pundits have figured it out. in fact, you will figure it out for the pundits.
that is the amazing thing. [applause] mr. bush: people in new hampshire set the agenda for the next part of this phase, this journey of electing a president, and i trust you. i trust you because you take the time to learn. you understand the heartbeat of the candidates. you understand if they are sincere or playing games. you challenge of us. you make us walk on the hot coals. you frustratingly never commit when i asked. [laughter] mr. bush: sometimes you do, but a lot of times you don't. so all i can say is that i trust you, and i do have faith in you, and this has been an extraordinary journey for me, and i ask for your support. [applause]
mr. bush: ok. we have a microphone there, and a microphone back there, and a microphone there. es, sir. >> i'm going to hold it. mr. bush: ok, so you will hold it hostage. >> first of all, i want to thank you and your mother for visiting our town tonight. thank you very much. [applause] >> i'm going to start you off with a foreign-policy question. this year, the primary coincides with the beginning of chinese new year. please discuss your philosophy in dealing with a commerce and military perspective with china. mr. bush: we need complete engagement. one of the things i think my brother got right was having
paulson have this dialogue across the spectrum of all policy. my experience with china was limited to -- since 2007, i started visiting there three or four times a year to learn. i had never been there. i am kind of an old-school guy. i don't like communists. [laughter] [applause] mr. bush: i had a hard time going to communist countries. but this is a very important relationship. you can see how misunderstandings can create real problems. here is a story that kind of exemplifies that. right after president obama got reelected, he had a summit with president xi in palm springs, and it was a big deal. i was there when the summit was taking place, right after that. mrs. obama did not go to the ummit. that was a massive offense to the chinese. every meeting i went to, it was
like, why are you insulting our glamorous first lady? why are you doing this? this is a big sign of disrespect. mrs. obama was probably taking care of her children in a pressure cooker called the white house, two teenage kids. there is a legitimate reason why she would not make it. my guess, i am almost 99.999% sure that she did not organize this important relationship, but nobody thought that. they all thought the opposite. it embedded me, that we have to have this full engagement with the chinese. they are our adversary. they are not our allies. there are lots of conflicts that have to be far worse if we don't engage. and again, we need to make sure if they do things that are egregious against our interests, like attacking into the office of personnel management, 23 million files in
the hands of the communist chinese right now, that there re consequences. that we don't slap them on the hand. that we have the ability to use cyber warfare in the same way that they do, that they know that there will be a consequence when they take the action, try to steal our intellectual property, or hack into our systems. when they act provocatively, we need to engage with our allies. it is an important relationship as it relates to our own national security. as it relates to the economy, it is also important, which is why trump toss idea of a 45% tariff across the board, give me a break. [laughter] that would create a global depression. it will create a loss of millions of jobs in this country. t will destroy our economy. and it will be retaliated against immediately. this is not the kind of response to anything.
we need to be serious about his. i think it is important, perhaps the most complicated relationship that has to be managed going forward. yes? >> i am a wildlife biologist in new hampshire. our moose numbers are down about 50% over the last decade as our winters have grown shorter. the female falls off in april, the babies hatch, we are loose -- lose until next winter. also, today was 60 degrees. when it is above 20 degrees, the moose lay down and do not feed, so consequently our female moose are producing fewer calves. i am looking for a republican to vote for next tuesday who is willing to take climate change in a serious manner and be orward thinking.
i am hoping i will vote for you. [applause] mr. bush: i have four grandkids, and this is the third moose i have gotten in own hall meetings. [laughter] applausemr. bush: i need one more. i am looking for number our. applausethis one is going to prescott in austin. george and vivian have already gotten theirs. the question is a good one, because i live in miami, where if you have four inches of rising tide, you have an impact on the quality of our water. our water supply would be in peril. in high tides, you can have severe flooding. it is not as egregious as -- president obama talked about how miami beach is underwater. i guess he hasn't been down there, someone told him that maybe.
it's not that bad. overall, if we don't plan for these things and adapt, there could be serious repercussions as it relates -- you know, different places will have different impacts. i think climate is changing. it is inconceivable to me that 5 billion people on this planet don't have an impact on that, and that we should be planning over the long haul to deal with it. here is what i worry about. i worry about our plans, such as today that the president proposed -- i don't think he's doing this unilaterally -- he as proposed a $10 tax on a barrel of oil, all of which will be passed on. the people who get hurt by that are working people, who right now are struggling. the people who are heard by -- who hurt by that are those with declining incomes right now. isposable income in this
country is down $2300. the challenge is to figure out ways to make sure we don't hurt working people in trying to solve this problem. the better approach would be for the government to spend oney on research and development, to identify the next generation of renewable energies, or other disruptive technologies that will allow us to consume less energy and yield a good result. that is a better approach than trying to pick winners and losers in the market, or trying to pick through venture capital. that doesn't work. carbon emissions have declined by 10% in the last decade because of an explosion of natural gas. that seems to be a good result, but nobody seems to celebrate hat. you want to find economic growth and protecting the environment to be the intersection that you are trying to find. that's what we did in florida. in florida, there is a bipartisan consensus about protecting the environment. like here, you love your environment for two reasons.
one, it is beautiful. extraordinary. the leaves changing in the fall, i have never seen anything like it. it is knockdown gorgeous, beautiful. florida survives because of our natural beauty as well. we are stewards of our environment because 95 million people come to visit us. it is the reason we don't have an income tax, probably the reason you don't have an income tax. people come to visit. they spend their money. so protecting the national environment is important, because that is our esponsibility. it is also important for economic purposes, and finding a way to find a win-win is what we should be doing. [applause] mr. bush: what do you think? laugh --
[laughter] mr. bush: i'm making progress? you are not ready to commit yet? mr. bush: see what i say? yes, sir. we've got a mic coming. >> first of all, i want to thank you for falling out the respectability scorecard. second of all, i wanted to know, it seems that people with mental illness and the addicted are being treated by being sent to prison and jails instead of eating the actual help that they need. what would you do as president to change that? mr. bush: great question. i am proud of my record, by the way, in support of people with different disabilities, develop mental and physical. it has been formed by my faith in many ways, and as governor of florida, we have made great progress. we were at the bottom of the pack, and we have risen up, and i am proud of it. it is why i didn't apologize
-- i apologize, mom, when i alled donald trump a jerk. [laughter] mr. bush: when he disparaged people with disabilities. it is not right. that is not the america i believe in. [applause] mr. bush: this challenge of addiction and mental health, it is important that you have both ogether. in many cases, in my personal experiences, these are dually diagnosed. it is hard to know which is the atalyst for the other. the journey that columba and i have done as loving parents with our daughter that suffered with addiction, you could go to one psychiatrist and get one diagnosis, and go to someone
who is equally smart at an equally good school, and you could have a dramatically different approach. there are people in this room who have gone through this challenge of addiction -- alcohol abuse, opiates, heroin, these are troubling times. mental health has a serious element of this as well. i think we need to look at this as an illness, that it needs to be treated, so that people who truggle with addictions need to have a network of people they can rely on. that can share, that understand what it is like to go through this. secondly, our criminal justice system has to recognize that there has to be second chances. 50% of people that are serving time in our federal penitentiary's are doing it for drug-related crimes. ersonal use.
and that has to change. and this is a place where you would think -- there are a growing number of people on the ight and left to want to change this -- you would think that if we have a leader who acknowledges that there are people on the right who agree, that they would posit this divide and go at it. i would be like a pig in slop in washington. why would you wait? instead, the president is using the clemency process, instead of going to congress, finding people who are conservative who believe it is time to modify our mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines. huge numbers of people agree with that, but this is what the lack of leadership does. we can solve this program. as governor of florida, i
created a strategy. my first week in office, we had a summit of 500 people, and we had prevention advocates, treatment providers, mental health advocates, and law enforcement all in a room, and we created a strategy. and we acted on that strategy. we had action items, and every year we would adapt the strategy based on the results, and we measure the effectiveness. it was like running a business. if you don't measure things, you don't care. my wife was the madrina of the prevention caucus. she created different coalitions, and it worked. we sought reductions. we expanded drug courts across the state. my daughter went to drug court. you know, i have been to a lot of graduations. perhaps the most meaningful graduation for me was when she graduated from drug court,
because it ain't easy, but it gave her a second chance, because had she not graduated she would have gone jail. having that consequence was a powerful incentive for her. thankfully, like a lot of other people because of the health that we have provided and others have provided, noelle has been drug-free for more than 10 years. [applause] >> governor, it appears accountability and public schools is in decline, both at the federal and state level. what is your vision for getting more kids to graduate career college ready, one today the majority of them simply do not graduate? ready to have a successful life. mr. bush: i am being generous, about 80% graduate with a piece of paper that says, i am a high school graduate.
half of those are not college or career ready. we dumbed it all down to make everybody feel good, but the net result is, check the remediation rate of entering high school seniors into community colleges in new hampshire, and you will find that it is not dissimilar to florida. more than 50% are we doing high school map or high school reading. and career readiness, forget it. t is not remotely close. i got politifact-ed, have you heard of that? the journalists are like judges, and they give you ratings. the ratings are like pinocchios. i got a couple of pinocchios for saying we are the best. belgium and luxembourg are ahead of us. i apologize. the total student population is probably miami-dade county,
i live. i apologize to the mighty jurists who came up to that. that's where we are. in florida, we challenged that by grading schools based on student learning. in florida, we challenged the notion that you are passed along even though you can't read. we had the greatest gains in reading of any state. florida's hispanic kids are two great levels ahead of their counterparts in other parts of the country. there was a test called the nation's report card, we were 9th out of 31 and 10 years later, we were six out of 50. [applause] mr. bush: there is no one thing. we have the most ambitious school choice programs, both public and private. that's important. we raised standards, that's important. we made assessment important, that you have an accurate assessment tool. that's important. we were rewarded improvement.
the way our system works if, in a w improvement, letter grade, you get $100 per student more. it is amazing. you provide incentives for other people, people seem to get it. the largest bonus program for teachers in the united states is the school recognition program. we turned the system upside own. we were 50 out of 50 in the graduation rate. we could not even say, thank god for phil in the blank for the worst state. everybody else in the country said, thank god for florida, they are 50th. so we are now above the national average. this is a state where 50% of students qualify for free or reduced lunch. the federal government can play a role in providing money for reforms, but it cannot be the national school board. this is the challenge. i am passionate about this. i visited 250 schools when i ran in 1998. from january to november. i learned so much about the dedicated nature of teachers,
and i learned about the system that was economically organized around the interests of dults. it changed how i talked about this. mr. bush: it did not change my passion for disruption, because we need to disrupt as much as we can, reward the excellence that takes place, and have no tolerance for the mediocrity that takes place in classrooms. assume that students can learn. it does not matter what zip code they were born in, every kid can learn. we should not lower expectations because we will get a bad result. but it is hard in the federal system to make this a national priority. you would think everybody would consider this the right thing to do. i know that people move to florida now because our schools were significantly better than they were when i started. yes, sir. [applause] mr. bush: one other thing, people say, what about common core?