tv Washington Journal CSPAN February 19, 2016 7:00am-9:01am EST
extremism in america. our conversation with peter bergen. ♪ host: justice scalia upon the body will lie in repose at the supreme court. live coverage will begin at 9:15 a.m. this morning. to paylic is invited respects from 10:30 a.m. until about 8:00 tonight. startorning, we want to off by talking about whether or not the supreme court is too political. a former reporter and now yield
law professor had an off in the new york times, she writes the supreme court has become an agent of partisan warfare to the extent it could do real damage to the institution. is the supreme court to political? republicans, (202) 748-8001. democrats, (202) 748-8000. independents, (202) 748-8002. you can make a comment on social .edia, @cspanwj here is the op-ed from yesterday's new york times, resetting the post scalia supreme court. been his death, there has plenty of talk about the substantial impact his absence will have on the supreme court stockett.
fate has handed the justices a chance to hit reset. uncharitable and tasteless, so be it. i have become conserved the majority is permitting the court become an agent of partisan warfare to an extent that threatens real warfare to the institution. his role on and off the bench contributed to that development. i am not claiming he was completely responsible, given the polarizing politics of the day. more people disapprove of the court, 50% approve of it. departure.otable
other governmental bodies have fared worse. the court is caught in the back draft of generalized mistrust of government. it calls for concern and exquisite care. reflecterts of peer to that concern. contrary to the impression created by highly partisan senate confirmation hearings, he court justices are not in pursuit of an agenda and do not work as republicans or democrats. here is a little bit of chief justice roberts from the new england school of law. [video clip] >> criticism does not bother me. that is important. it is a big part of our problem not to care about what we do, in
terms of the merits of the decisions. people object to how the courts are being run, that is something else. trouble with people doing that. it is often based on misunderstanding, or calculated perception about what we are up to. particulard political decisions, that remains the decision of the political branches. it may lead to criticism of us is often a mistake. above or apart from the criticism. host: that is john roberts from
earlier last year, talking about the supreme court and politics. is the supreme court to political? republicans, (202) 748-8001. democrats, (202) 748-8000. independents, (202) 748-8002. let's begin with a call from scott, republican line. thank you for c-span. you do a wonderful job. love watching c-span. robert's point that he made, it is more or less the political branches that are political. i do not think the supreme court is too political. their job is to interpret the constitution. it is not a living, breathing document that means everything you wanted to mean.
if you talk about amendments, those are political. they have to be dealt by the legislature. i do not think the supreme court is overly politicized at all. i think antonin scalia a was a brilliant justice. . pray for his family thank you for taking my call. eric, independent line. allow me to express myself. give me one minute. country a decade ago because i believed in america. i am a sociologist. that is what i did in school. this countryion in , the part of the government ,hat is the most respective
right now, we have a democratic president. time and time again, he has -- the competition. he cannot change the law by himself. when the democrats lost the house, the next thing he did was take executive action. now, if you go with the supreme court, you have justices who are democrats, justices who are republicans. who arehave justices simply americans? of course the supreme court has a bias.
back to linda greenhouse's piece. frequentcalia upon parodying of right-wing talking points may have reflected the contraction of his intellectual universe. in an interview with jennifer scalia said he got most of his news from the car radio and from skimming the wall street journal and the conservative washington time. he stopped reading the washington post because it had become liberal and he could not handle it anymore. earlier in his tenure, he prided himself on hiring one -- among hisiberal clerks. practice ad that decade ago.
they calculated the percentage of each of the law clerks over the past 11 years who had previously clerked for a democratically appointed judge on a lower court. scholars deemure for a justice's chambers. ruth bader ginsburg ranked the highest. the figure for chief justice john roberts .3%. justice scalia and clarence thomas horton -- and clarence thomason were tied for the lowest. rd --ir paper, how paul how party polarization turned -- into the supreme court, authors offered observation about networks in which justices spend
their lives. they note a growing divide among affluent, well-educated democrats and republicans, with the results that democratic elites are more liberal than other democrats. republican elites are of -- are more conservative than other republicans. justices on the left and right are part of social networks that reinforce conservatism for republican justices and liberalism for democrats. that is linda greenhouse. mark, florida, independent. it is interesting there is concern about this being a political situation. one of the famous quotes i love
is the president of the united states can say it depends on what your definition of "is" is. .t is hard to maintain justice i do not see cure for it as long as you are dealing with mankind. the best i can say is good luck to america. dennis, democrats line, he is in columbus, ohio. caller: this is canny. host: oh, kenny, go ahead. to bounce offke what the last caller was saying about the laws. it is not hard to understand the law. is written and it says all men are created equal, why does the greatest country on the planet of this earth still
have race issues? still being people second-class people? why do we have a black president and everyone on the republican -- everything obama did and tried to do to make this country a better country, i worked here in columbus, ohio. everybody at my job that are if words, republicans, could kill somebody, that man would be buried right now. justice scalia will lie in repose at the supreme court. they will bring the casket up
the front steps and it will lie in repose. live,n see we will be covering this all day long. carl, grosse pointe, michigan. is the supreme court to political? caller: absolutely. 's only job isurt to factor how factors sit into the constitution. nothing else. they have totally lost their job. the job is not to see how they how does this fit in? i am in involuntary servitude.
the definition of involuntary servitude is not to take money from me and give it to somebody else. that is not the government's job. is personal individuals. the government is totally lost. -- goes to entitlement. we have the right to implement -- improve our lives, but you do not have the right to take from one person to another. the supreme court is supposed to be interpreting the constitution. host: the public split on obama's role in filling scalia's seat.
as polling suggests, the battle is not playing out how republicans have hoped. senatorsrk defends kelly ayotte, chuck grassley, john mccain, rob portman, and , each of whom is up for reelection. the ad campaign will defend the mitch mcconnell, who said the senate would refuse to accept and obama nominee to replace justice scalia. a poll released wednesday found 43% of those surveyed said the senate should vote this year. 42% said they should put it off until next year. released thursday
said 47% of americans want mr. obama to name the next test is. 46% said they would wait until next year. david, new york city. the supreme court is political. in is not to political or not political, it is just political and it always has been. the members of the supreme court ,ave always been politicized lawyers, politicians, and the come with a particular point of view. this is being underscored by the political storm that is being with scalia's vacancy. scalia, all due respect to he and his family, had a phony, , had a method for
designing the truth of the constitution by somehow divining what the words really mean. studied the constitution, they know it is very bay -- very vague. the document was the result of compromises between many opposing factions at the time. it would be impossible to know what could be in the mind of every person who ratified the constitution, the bill of rights, or the text itself. to face facts. the court is political. do ise constitution can give us some kind of boundary or work in which we can terms of interpretation. what i find ironic, one thing the constitution is clear on is the president is supposed to nominate judges and the senate
is opposed to provide advice and consent. republicans are now saying obama should not do his job. this is unprecedented, the aesident refused to nominate judge. it is unprecedented that the senate would refuse to consider the nomination. republicans are hypocritical here. host: harry reid says obama will pick supreme court nominee in about three weeks. next call, seneca, south carolina. hi, greg. caller: thank you for taking my call. the opinion of the previous caller was spot on. the supreme court makes decisions that lean to the left and right and a lot of times, americans do not feel that the supreme court is taking the
riseion that they should above influences of politics and set their own agenda, which it should not be a republican or democratic agenda, but more so, -- forhat which is america and within the rules of law and not try to reconstruct the constitution, manipulate it in any way, shape, or form, for any specific agenda, political faction, idealism that is coming from the outside influence. highly respected institution. past of that, i do not know how to interject anything else. a tweet, the supreme court
is to political and to activist when they issue rulings that you do not agree with. post,orning, washington op-ed post by mitch mcconnell and senator grassley. the american people should not be robbed of their say is the title. rarely does the supreme court vacancy occur in the final year of a presidential term. the senate has not confirmed a nominee to fill a vacancy arising in such circumstance is for the better part of a century. the american people have an opportunity to make their voice heard in the selection of scalia's successor, as they participate in the process to select their next president. how often does someone from ashland, kentucky, or zero in, iowa, get to have such impact? think the american people should be robbed of the
opportunity. democrats that to differ. they would rather the senate simply push through another lifetime appointment by a president on his way out the door. the president's authority to nominate a successor, but as inconvenient as it may be for this president, article two, section two of the constitution, grants the senate the power to provide or withhold its consent. joy, washington, pennsylvania. caller: good morning. 78 to startsay i am with. i cannot believe the disrespect that went on, even though i am fan of scalia. he is barely cold and they are politicizing it. a didn't take at least a week to
show respect for him. also, 10 years or 80 years old, 10 years of serving or 80 years old should be all a justice should serve. they are too old to make decisions on some of these things they are doing, plus, they fall asleep in public. i know how that is. that should be changed. as far as obama goes, they have not helped him do anything. host: lewis, evansville, indiana. i think the supreme court, we are entering the bible belt in these primaries. overwhelmingly vote republican. the supreme court, it was 7-2
republican appointees until obama appointed the last two. to make up the supreme court, six catholics and three jews. i would like to see a better balance on the religious makeup of the free court. theology comes into play on ideology. i would like to see more religious balance. lewis, evansville indiana. cruz willewspaper, not attend the funeral. it will be impossible for him to make it to the funeral because of his campaign schedule. jonathan, seattle, washington. thank you for taking my call.
based on the new york times article you guys featured this morning, they made a great case for the fact that it is political. scalia was extremely politically outspoken. he read all conservative newspapers. reading the washington post. at the end of the article, writing a train to the union station, he asked what their political leaning was by asking what they out of the new pope. he said blacks should go to lesser advanced schools because he thought they would do better. the leisure class, their past time is to talk politics with
each other. one of the major things is climate change. they would not see a hearing on climate change. pickup pushed into a lower court. got pushed into a lower court. host: do you think justice scalia was the only political justice? caller: there is a spectrum leaning left and right. is extremelyay it left or extremely right, but it is within moderate conservative politics most of the majority of the justices subscribed to. the other day, you had an callde you were asking or for the -- of a justice to it
all of these justices came from elite educations. are going to diversify the supreme court, it will not be based on race or sex. qualification would be has the person traveled abroad, are they open to other cultures? schooling and background and education have they had? jonathan, first time caller in seattle. this is a piece that came out last june. it adds to the conversation we're having this morning. the supreme court is a political plans, not a judicial one. this is andrew mccarthy writing. legislate is astonishing in its cynicism. the chief not only usurp
-- law writing the powers toed divine legislative purpose from its expression in legislative language and then to manufacture legislative ambiguity as the pretext for twisting the language to serve the purpose. it takes a clintonian quantum of cheek to pull that off one day and then, to invade against the very thought of it. with regard to the health care case, there was never a shadow of a doubt and the plethora of opinions generated by these three cases. there is not a single one authored by ruth bader ginsburg,
there is not a doubt that any of them would wander off the reservation. however like-minded, they will often diverge on principles of constitutional adjudication and statuary construction, murky separation of powers, the etymology of language, and much else. betweenthe debate scalia and clarence thomason over a statute, in defiance of obama policy, defeats jerusalem of -- treats jerusalem as sovereign israeli territory. pat come along, south carolina. thank you for taking my call. do you think the supreme court is political? what is your view. caller: it is too political.
the democrat party is out here -- equal rights, equality for everyone and president obama really wanted to do something for the american people. he would nominate a conservative, try to balance it out. that would be quality. that is what he should do. thank you. is due topresident arrive at the supreme court this morning. 9:30 is the time people are looking at for the president to arrive. anita, indianola, mississippi. she just disappeared from the screen. archie, atlanta, georgia. caller: it is political and i think back to when
president obama was a lack of, how mitch mcconnell had said he would do everything in his power to disrupt this presidency, for -- recommend in some kind of way. the president does have the right to nominate. archie, in atlanta. jim is up next. had a you feel about police corruption? host: why do you ask? i have a case that may be getting ready to go to the court here. the other day, i -- host: before you tell us the story, just a reminder we are talking about the supreme court scalia'sof justice
death, if the supreme court is to political. this is based on several articles from the papers. mary, do you think the supreme court is to political? caller: yes, i do. -- presidenthas obama has had two bites at the apple. he has had two of his nominees put on the court. we know which way they lean. we need the balance. the other thing is, the last two, almost two years before the republicans became the majority, the reason we had a do-nothing ,ongress is because the senate harry reid, invoked the nuclear
nothingo they could do for the last year and a half in that senate, but put on nominees , get them to pass through on the lower district courts so that they can pack them up with left-leaning people. leave it toi say the next president. my husband and i just voted in michigan four donald trump. we are lifelong democrats, but we have changed and we are now independents. caller: tomorrow --host: tomorrow is justice scalia's funeral. it is being held in washington, d.c. that begins at 11:00 a.m.
eastern time on c-span. we will have our cameras in there and you can watch that on c-span. you can hear it on c-span radio and watch it on c-span.org. today is a full day of events scalia's body lying in repose. ,awrence for -- lawrence hurley what is the plan for today? this morning, the casket will arrive around 9:30 at the court. , thell be carried up steps big steps leading up to the main hall in the court, carried by supreme court police officers and met by some of justice former clerks. there will be a private ceremony
remaining eight justices and members of the scalia family. later, about 10:30, it will be open to the public to view until about 8:00 p.m. what time is the president expected? guest: i don't believe we know exactly when, but i believe it will be the afternoon. host: can anyone come? expecting ably number of people, they will probably have to line up outside of the courthouse. be a prettyrobably large class -- pretty large crowd. is this the first supreme court justice that has died while in office in a while? are these plans set in advance?
you know? this is the first time a justice has died in the middle of a supreme court term. that is an issue for the administration of the court and how they're going to handle the cases and so on. in terms of how they handled the desk, they follow similar procedures to when justices died more recently. more recently, chief justice rehnquist, in 2005. who are other dignitaries we can expect to see? guest: some of the retired justices, who are still around.
tomorrow, at the funeral, there will probably be more people, including vice president biden. when will the supreme court get back to business? guest: back on the bench on monday morning, hearing arguments in the first batch of cases, where it would just be the eight justices. we are not expecting any rulings next week. they put off their private meeting they were held today to discuss new cases they might take, so they canceled that. some of the courts actions will be put off couple of weeks. after that, we will see how they handle having one justice down and how it will affect the outcome in of cases coming up. will be onnce hurley duty up at the supreme court today.
on the front page of the year times yesterday, groups are mobilizing for a court fight. president obama and his lawyer were blunt as they jumped into experts incal washington believed to be one of the hardest battles in a generation. obamaor adviser to mr. urged dozens of the president's in theirt to hold back condemnation of republicans for refusing to hold hearings to replace justice scalia, who died last week. needed tohouse hardly prod the interest groups. the outcome of this battle could determine the fate of a vast array of issues for decades to immigration, climate change, campaign finance, affirmative action, gay rights,
abortion. david, st. paul, minnesota. is the supreme court to political in your view? caller: yes. the supreme court is getting to --very political, especially i want to say thank you for allowing me to speak on your program. that, i wanted to say i extend my condolences to the family of scalia and more than that, this is a nation problem. say it is a sad day for us in this country. add to your program, what is going on, what i noticed is that is republican party politicizing this entire thing.
and the authority of the a person is to appoint to occupy the space, why are they trying to politicize it now? now, it is puzzling. it is something i decided to talk about. they need to stop doing this kind of thing. to take it serious. they should not be politicized. calling in.you for from lake have a sioux city, arizona, mickey. the supremeink court is political. i have two issues with it. maybe they are taking on too many social issues, which my because i some of the problems. doing nominations, obama
the nominations, i am wondering .f it is a conflict of interest seems as there are cases before the court that have to do with the overreach. plusf them involves 20 states that have brought the case to the court. conflict of interest in that he would be sitting his judge on his own cases against him. host: stephen says the supreme court has always been political. judges are partisan. it has always been this way and will always be, which is fine. says it has been since fdr loaded the courts with senators, james says
mcconnell didn't the american people a favor. he sandblast away the veneer that the supreme court is anything but a rigged operation and works to prop up a rigged system. all supreme court's are being controlled by the government of the day. nora, calling in from the bronx. it is political. would haveot, there been no overturn of the voting rights. deep president has the right, written by the constitution, to nominate somebody. the lady that called previously talking about he is going to stack court in his favor and he should balance it out. skill leo a right conservative that was forings the conservatives. he did things that were not fair for by people.
withnounced black people his affirmative action remarks, that we should be on a slower tract. wake up. they talk about they want their country back. court does not decide these things. immigration is on the forefront. these are things that will affect the next generation, our children and grandchildren. theow the president has intellect and he has the humility to a point, to nominate someone that will be for the thisry's good, nevermind political partisan. host: regina, republican. the supreme court is political. all of my republican friends are really angry at john roberts for his decision on the affordable
care act. right.exactly what was he said it was a tax. thought it would be a --, but he put it in the hands where it belongs. congress holds the purse. it is their responsibility. all they have to do is repeal the tax and we have no more argument. think it is a tax and it can be repealed. a tweet, like it or not, it is important to have strong voices on the court that will debate legal argument. another, to political? is the pope catholic? muddled outcome of exit virginia governor's appeal.
it equated to bad news for the whore of robert mcdonnell, se final appeal last with the high court. a deadlock of four to four would've affirm his conviction whilend him to prison, leaving the definition of public corruption broad. onlyis far from the possibility. most other options mean a delay or vindication for mcdonnell, who has argued his actions after accepting loans, vacations, and constituteot official acts subject to criminal prosecution. the court accepted the kate last month. they will hear-- arguments this spring. if the justices deadlock, they could decide to read your the case when a ninth justice is
appointed. if they deadlock, they could decide to let the 2015 'sfirmation of mcdonnell sentence, issued by the court of appeals stand. the court might not deadlock at all and decide for or against mcdonnell. they could avoid its decision to except the case in the first place. that is in "the washington post." donna, somerville, massachusetts. president obama has the right to nominate any judge he wishes. i am voting for hillary clinton. they ought to get rid of all of those republicans and all of those tea party republicans and give the democrats back the
weority in the senate and will have a unified government and everything would get done. hillaryom a newspaper, clinton defended joining the 2006 filibuster of samuel alito, saying it was not similar to republican threats to block president obama from replacing deceased justice scalia. after the senate held hearings and put alito's nomination to a vote, other democrats had the right to use a process in an attempt to block the conservative judge. idaho, independent line. good morning. morning.ood the supreme court is politicized. people should read the book
--.t barack obama believes and saw lewinsky. so to my air -- sotomayor -- understand,le don't in california, the majority of the people voted against proposition 8. overturned people. that is tyranny. democrats, electing tearing he will come to this country if it is not already here. on the democratic line, out, griffith, indiana. -- al, griffith, indiana. caller: you have to think about
her recent history. when we had the election many democrats thought was stolen, when you had the supreme court versus goreh bush and jeb bush was governor of florida at the time and we had , with kathleen harris in florida, to have a supreme court now, if we had another tight election and all 4-4 supreme court, it could throw us into a constitutional crisis. a tweet, the fact republicans want to keep obama from nominating anyone proves how scandalous the supreme court has become. justices travel often, but it is not clear who pays. justice scalia was the court's
most prolific traveler since 2011 it is the first full year sate the eight justices together. he was paid for travel expenses by outside groups 23 times since 2014. 2011. 100 times since at the other end of the spectrum, chief justice roberts. disclosure forms provide scant details about activities of the man and women -- the men and women who have the appointments to the highest court. justice elena kagan returned it to princeton university, for a speech in november 2014. saidisclosure form merely she was being reimbursed by princeton for her transportation, hotels and meals. theform does not state
total cost of the trip or note who attended the speech. -- cannotnot set accept anything of value from someone with a case in their court and they are required to report travel related reimbursements that total at least $375. anse instructions include exemption covering food, lodging, or entertainment received as a personal hospitality, described as persons living a justice stay at a home or property owned by them or their family. this is a sizable loophole. at the 30,000ying acre see below creek ranch -- resortcreek ranch, a billed as the home of john b poindexter.
the company told the washington post a friend and 35 other for roomre not charged and board. it would fall under the personal hospitality exemption according .o ronald rotunda gary, what do you think? do not think they are too political. to a certain extent, you have to expect it. as far as the appointment in the republicans refusing to consider and block a nomination by obama, it makes me wonder if harry reid isn't calling the they arere because
just giving the democrats a taste of their own medicine. reid through everything in a garbage that the republicans proposed. that was to protect obama. no strings attached. highway.t the you got it. of new polls came out this morning. here is the wall street journal. republicans in south carolina, donald trump lead has/in south carolina. he is down from his 16 point lead from a month ago. john kasich, ben carson, each 9%. that is republicans in south carolina.
wall street journal poll and a new fox news poll, clinton feels the bern. she trails by three points nationally. -- i am sorry, 47% to 44%. .hat is a fox news poll le, east syracuse, new york. ellie, east syracuse new york. supreme court, is it too political? do believe it is very political. we have been under the supreme court, if i am correct, for the last 40 years has held the majority, republicans. when people talk about fairness and balance, it has been five-four, it was 7-2 at one time. the republicans have done
nothing for our country that is positive. that is wrong. they have blocked everything this president has tried to do. hopefully, if they get away with or bernieary clinton sanders will be the new president. democrats are waking up. they have to get out to the polls. is the hill newspaper. senator roberts, a republican from kansas, has endorsed marco rubio for president. that is the eighth senator to endorse their fellow center. is going too, jim endorse hillary clinton in south carolina. robert, frostburg, maryland. good morning. caller: good morning.
i want to commend you and steve, both of you people have tremendous respect for the callers that call in. there is no way we can tell what your political affiliation is. you do it with respect to your callers. you respect what they say and you do not cut them off until .hey get their personal grouse i am a vietnam veteran. i am fairly disturbed about the direction our country is going. history,ire in whatever the privileged class got control of the empires, he took those empires at their time, had the best armies in the world.
when those empires imposed a care system on their subordinates, every single one of them failed. this country is built on marvelous principles. we have a civil war because our country refuses to set the right of people. if these republicans continue, i for great respect eisenhower, gerald ford, teddy roosevelt. each one manages the country with the country in mind. robert, tie this into the supreme court. caller: our court, what it has i ask -- i respect mr.
roberts for the decision he made is, obama care, the thing the decisions being made are political. it has to stop. that is robert, frostburg, maryland. this is robert in new jersey. as far as the supreme court being political, yes, it is political. the right wing is extremely political. this is the last 10 months of the obama presidency. he has nothing to gain by appointing somebody. any point, this is less political than any term of presidency.
i am a producer with a radio station nine adcs -- with a radio station in d.c. i return -- i interviewed a retired president from the omb. want to give advice to obama. he needs to think about who he listens to for advice. this person told me he was getting bad advice, especially in his first term, mostly clinton advisers that were referred to him. this is important. , most of theed public disagrees with citizen united. it is important to get someone in there as soon as possible. this is a washington post
op-ed. charles koch, chairman and chief executive of koch industries. bernie and me is the title. upset withders is the political and economic system that is often rigged to help the privileged few at the else,e of every one particularly the least advantaged. he believes we have a two-tiered society that dooms millions of fellow citizens to lives up poverty. andhinks corporations seek benefit from corporate welfare while ordinary citizens are level opportunities and a playing field. i agree with him. this point, you may be asking yourself, is charles koch feeling mthe bern? hardly.
andrew in parksville, maryland. democrats line. is the supreme court to political? caller: yes, it is, sir. i am american afro. i am afro-american. i have served this country in war. i have supported the presidents that, when i went to war in vietnam, whether they be democrat or republican. this democrat knows, any president has the right to fulfill his job and select yes, it is, sir. i am american afro. i am afro-american. i have served this country in beever he or she feels to for the supreme court. , the american people voted
in 2012. ins president was elected 2012. until the next president in 2016. until then, he has the right to select. let me tell you something else, if it was a republican in, i'm quite sure all the republicans that are senators would be saying the same thing that i'm saying and they would be doing exactly the same thing in supporting their president. are going to return to
the supreme court at about 9:00 this morning, take a few more calls. at about 9:15, we are going to the supreme court, where justice scalia's body will be lying in repose all day long. the president will be coming to the supreme court to pay respects. public fromo the about 10:30 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. this evening. coverageice, that begins at about 9:15 a.m. this morning. with this going on, we will be covering very heavily what is going on in south carolina and the nevada caucuses.
the democratic nevada caucuses are saturday. the republican gop primary is also saturday. now, if you have been with us through this campaign season, you have seen the c-span bus in iowa, in new hampshire, and now it is in south carolina. on its way to south carolina from new hampshire, it made a stop in the bronx. it stopped at mount saint michael academy. about 100 students toured the bus to learn about c-span programming and resources. attend thetudents all boys roman catholic school located in the bronx. a special thanks to the mount saint michael academy's brother litty forchi
organizing that. if you want more information about the bus schedule, visit c-span.org. you can also follow the bus on twitter and instagram @cspanbus. up, peter bergen, his newest book is "united states of jihad: investigating america's homegrown terrorists." first, this weekend on booktv , it isrican history tv greenville, south carolina weekend. for those of you who follow us or watches closely, every weekend on c-span 2, it is 48 hours of nonfiction books. ofc-span 3, it is 48 hours american history. we like to visit cities and learn out more about -- learn more about their historical and literary site.
this weekend, we will be featuring greenville, south carolina. here is a little bit from the mayor talking about his city. >> greenville is located along interstate 85 between atlanta and charlotte in the upstate of south carolina. this has always been a place of commerce and industry, going all the way back to the 19th century , with the textile industry. at one time, it was known as the textile center remove -- of america. meant they were always open to people from outside. what greenville did that is quite remarkable is that in the 1970's the political leadership of this community decided to diversify. surprising.
the textile industry was still going strong, why do that? in the 1970's, you had businesses being recruited to come here such as general electric. michelinrecruitment of and then the corporate headquarters of michelin north these were the intentional acts to reinvent the economy to rely not just on textiles. at the moment in time when the textile industry began to came to the rescue. we have michelin, general electric, and other highly
diversified economies. it was an intentional decision by political leadership to diversify the economy and reinvent the economy long before they had to do that. >> washington journal continues. host: peter bergen, your new book is "united states of jihad: investigating america's homegrown terrorists." americans have long overestimated the threats posed by jihadists. guest: 80% of americans are terrorismorried about as an issue. some of that is understandable. we had an attack on a metrojet where people were killed by an isis affiliate.
bernardino california, 14 people were killed inspired by isis. said, the threat from jihadist terrorists in the united states is relatively low. it is being managed and contained. what you mean? guest: if we had this conversation in 2002 shortly predicted thati there would be 45 americans killed by jihadi terrorists in the next decade and a half, that would have seemed absurdly optimistic. each of those deaths is a tragedy, but they are not national catastrophes. they are not even catastrophes on the scale of the paris attacks you are not going to hear a politician saying we have
managed and contained the threat. you are also not going to hear them say nobody is going to get one through. host: you also write americans also suffer from historic amnesia and that the golden age of terrorism was in the 1970's. guest: there were more than 100 hijackings. there were a whole slew of attacks. there was a lot of political violence. some of that had a marxist flavor and that has pretty much disappeared. host: this is not to say that the public should overlook the dangers of islamic extremism.
everyone has raised the alarm to family and community members of radicalizing militant alerting the authorities. not far from where we are sitting, you may recall the case of five young men from northern virginia who went to join the pakistani taliban. their families got in touch with the fbi and then they were arrested. peers and family members often know the most about people. how many investigations are underway in the united states? guest: the fbi says 900 in all 50 states. host: nine hundred separate people or organizations? 900 investigations.
typically these are single people or operating in pairs. we are not seeing the same large groups as 9/11 attackers. for the most part, these alone wolf -- lone wolf attackers. arguing against the more sanguine sentiments, that is 25 more jihadi terrorism cases the 9/11. host: how do you define jihad? guest: jihad has two meanings. the people that a profile in the book defined it as a holy war against the enemies of islam. the other meaning is the spiritual struggle you have internally to act in an islamic manner. a lot of people choose that meaning. that a more minority view is the war against the perceived enemies of islam. host: no dollhouse on -- nadal h
assan. who is he and where is he? guest: he is in fort leavenworth facing the death penalty. soldiers and one civilian at fort hood, texas. the last time the u.s. military carried out an execution was more than a century ago. he grew up in northern virginia and is an army major and psychiatrist. his family member ran businesses. he is a typical profile of people i write about in the book. non-observant muslims who became more fundamentalist overtime. often middle-class. these are usually people who are fairly well-educated. enforcementfor law is they are really ordinary americans.
they are not foreigners coming into the country. host: where did conversion happen with dr. hassan? his parents both died when they were relatively young. his mother and father both died in the early 40's and late 50's. that turned him toward a more fundamentalist interpretation of his parents both died islam and then into a more militant version of islam. i also interviewed his first cousin from northern virginia. he is a successful lawyer not far from here. cousints out that his -- was unmarried, , was very worried about going to afghanistan in a never had ad had serious relationship with anybody else. no friends. this was a socially isolated
.ndividual there is no one-size-fits-all explanations. a lot of people enjoy being part of a jihadi group -- it is fun, it is exciting. tried to reach out -- a lot of these people are in prison, some of them are dead. often, they are under special provisions by the government, are prevented from talking to journalists. i talked to one person -- i got
a 100-page letter from a man who is in super max in colorado. he is a white, middle-class kid who converted to islam and became a leading jihadist on the internet in the english speaking world. it is interesting. the internet was largely created by americans. it turns out that the beensh-speaking jihad has fomented by american citizens. anwar al-alaqui. guest: perfect example. host: he is also from northern virginia. what is that connection? he was born in new mexico , spent time in san diego, leading moderate cleric, it looked like after the 9/11
attacks. he was hanging out with two of -- hijackers and he became she is the most important english-speaking cleric in the world of jihad. his writings keep showing up even after he has died. he helped publish this english-language jihadi magazine that showed up in all the cases we looked at. in the boston marathon case, they got their bomb making recipe from him. you say there is no real connecting thread for a lot of these people. guest: think of it as a stew. militant islam might be one factor. some of these people are relatively young. for them, it is tremendously exciting.
i spoke to one of the people who was the first one to create an english jihadi website. he moved to yemen and he became part of al qaeda. by his own account, it was enthralling. ,hen you look at these cases the more individual in each person is and the mix of motivations, you can just say it or americanslam foreign-policy -- it is a mix of all of those. they killed an eight-year-old studenta 23-year-old and a restaurant manager. for what? the more you get into the w
hy, at the sudden point, you hit a brick wall because these are inexplicable acts at some point. host: james clapper talking about isis and its threat to they homeland. -- the homeland. [video clip] >> the rate of foreign fighters traveling to the conflict zones is without precedent. fighters have0 traveled to syria from at least 120 countries since the beginning of the conflict in 2012. as we saw and the november paris attacks, returning foreign fighters pose a dangerous operational threat. demonstrated sophisticated attacks. it has become the green eminent -- preeminent global terrorist threat. it has conducted scores of
attacks inside and outside syria and iraq. the estimated strength globally of my soul.that although the u.s. is a harder externaln europe, isil operations remain a critical part of our threat assessment for 2016. guest: those are sobering figures. the last time we heard the figures, there were 4500 westerners that had gone to syria for training. saying 6900.tor is the last time we heard an overall number, it was 30000 and now it is close to 40,000. we are continuing to see fairly number -- significant numbers going to syria for training. now it is often a one-way ticket.
i could only find two examples of people who trained with a jihadi militant group. we are talking about a handful. everybody involved in the paris attack trained in syria. there were a couple dozen other helping with the attack. is a big problem for france, for belgium, which has very large numbers that grew up relative to its population. is it is -- it is a reasonably good problem for germany. , you cannottates drive from damascus to washington dc, we are protected by our geography. we are protected by the fact that the american muslim community is pretty well
integrated. there are astonishingly high numbers. we are talking about a group that is disadvantaged. cases is little over 300 since 9/11 of american citizens or residents engaged in some kind of jihadi terrorism crime. -- volume of people being attracted to this ideology is much higher. host: if you were writing this book and you called it "france of jihad" would you come to the same conclusion? guest: i think france is in a whole different -- you could have a paris-style attack every year going forward. the french say they need to fall -- follow one person in anti--- every 25 people.
they have had two serious attacks in paris in one year. people atkilled four a jewish supermarket. we also had an ataxic a killed 130 people in november. i think the problem will probably get worse. you have this huge influx of refugees. they are coming into society hostile to immigration. look at the rise of these nationalist parties in europe, whether in france, england, hungary. this is going to create more alienation among the muslim community, more anger. to your are going to go
calls in a few seconds. guest: homegrown is a term of art that the u.s. government uses. it is the idea that these are not people traveling overseas with training. they are not associated with a formal terrorist organization. they are organizing in their bedrooms or the basement. they are as american as anybody who is looking at this -- listening to this show. it is an american phenomenon area for most people, you think of terrorism that comes from outside. on 9/11, we were attacked by foreign-born hijackers. is ant, this phenomenon american phenomenon. the boston bombers, one was an
american citizen and the other was an american resident. san bernardino, the husband was born in chicago and his wife was a legal resident because she married him. this is an american phenomenon. host: peter bergen is our guest. he produced in 19 -- 1997, he produced osama bin laden's first television interview. frank is in fort lauderdale, florida. independent line. caller: hi, peter bergen. your book sounds valuable. i'm interested in reading it. i would like to tell you about an experience i had. miami-dade in 1976. there was a bombing of the dominican consulate in the back of the building that i lived in. i was getting ready to move in and there's a police cars around the area to see what it looked like at night when i drove there.
itre are a lot of people -- is not just the jihadi's versus america. there is a lot of difference of opinion between the different sectors of the jihadi movement that don't like each other and they take out their grudges on the streets of america, just like the people of miami-dade did years ago. i think miami-dade went through something like this years before fairfax, virginia. which, incidentally, i lived in for about seven years. good: the caller makes a point. there have been all sorts of forms of political violence in the united states that are not necessarily jihadi political violence. the first real attack was conducted in wall street by an italian anarchist.
one of the points of make in the book is that extreme right-wing militants have killed about the same number as people as jihadi in the u.s. since 9/11. we have seen attacks on the church in charleston, where dylan roof, a neo-nazi, killed nine african-americans. he was trying to incite a race war, by his own account. that is a fundamentally political objective. there are other forms of political violence in this country. 330 americans have been charged with terrorism since 9/11. 29 years old is the average age. 30% are married, 30% of children. guest: myself and my research team created this database to make some underlying claims in the book.
if you look at the san bernardino case, they perfectly match this profile. they were college-educated, married, had a child, he was only $70,000 per year in a pretty good job. in many respects, they accept the fact that they adopted this ideology. they seems to be living the american dream. host: michael is in pennsylvania on our republican line. caller: thank you. so, i think things in the world are way simpler than anybody wants to admit. syria. the united states, saudi arabia, turkey, want to remove the the assad regime. in 2013, we started arming moderate rebels who were trying to remove the assad regime.
rebels are no longer moderate rebels, they are isis. it is the same group of people. all we are trying to do is remove the assad regime the same way read remove gaddafi, the same playbook. can you guys correct me if i'm wrong? guest: syria is very complicated. not quite sure i quite understand the point. i think our de facto position has not been the immediate removal of a sod. if you look at the two most powerful players in syria right now, it is isis and the al qaeda affiliate. is mostly trying isis.ack
russia is the preservation of power of a sod. there are a lot of different players. , there is aivil war lot of academic literature about how long they go on for, civil wars, they last between 10-12 years. we are in year five. i think it could go on for more than a decade. the civil war in colombia went on for five decades. the people who could that the brakes on it don't seem to be planning to do so. states,ians, the gulf russia, they are all sort of fomenting this. said,back to what clapper the westerners going to syria, that is underlying this, the syrian civil war, we are going to continue to see gousands of foreign fighters
there. host: peter bergen is an author and is employed by cnn and the new america foundation, where he the director and vice president. mark is in lake geneva, florida. mark tommy of got to turn down the volume. we are going to move on to another mark in south carolina on the independent line. caller: hello. thank you for c-span. i wanted to disagree with the premise of the book. especially the subtitle. terrorism really stems from radical right-wing and is certainly far greater than any muslim jihadist terrorism in this country over the existence of the country.
i just wonder if he is talking about homegrown radical terrorism, does he mention that in his book? does he talk about terrorism against blacks and people of color, the kkk, bombing and killing people going to abortion clinics, you know, does he bring that up? is there a comparison? it is not quite fair to talk about homegrown terrorism when you don't bring up the right-wing. guest: it is a good point and i certainly address it in the book. i earlier said, 48 americans have been killed by antigovernment fanatics, antiabortion militants, neo-nazis since 9/11. in the post-9/11 era. i focus on jihadi terrorism because we were attacked on 9/11 , the most devastating attack
since the british burned down the white house and the 1800s. i do establish the fact that whether it is dylan roof internal stem who killed nine african-american -- in charleston who killed nine african-americans, that there are other forms of lyrical violence. host: do you use the term radical islam? guest: probably in the book i talk about militant islam more. the president has been careful to not use the phrase militant islam or radical islam. i understand his reasoning. it more he says it, the more does play into the playbook that we are at war with islam. of course, we are not. factact is also, it is a that this ideology has something to do with a particular reading of islamic text. the koran is not a book, it is the word of god, and you can cherry pick phrases and versus
which seem to advocate offensive wars against the perceived enemies of islam. just as the crusades had something to do with christianity and the settler inement had something to do , this has so to something to do with islam. the good news is that the people most likely able to fight back are the people who have islamic knowledge, including another northern virginia resident who the third largest mosque in
the u.s. he has helped young men who have become enamored with isis. he is able to make the arguments from an islamic perspective. he has been successful in that. host: here he is meeting president obama. when you met osama bin laden in 1997, what was your impression? guest: my impression was that he was quite well-informed, intelligent, he was talking shinseki.leader of gerry adams was a terrorist at one point. he is pretty well-informed about what is going on in the world. he is intelligent. charismatic at all? guest: i did not find him that
charismatic, but the people around him, on his every word and treated him with much deference. he is certainly charismatic to his followers. as i'm sure you know, isis and dispute aboutn a the head of the global jihadi movement. isis can see themselves as the rightful heir of bin laden. i took about the ideology of bin laden. laden-ism is a lot like other ideologies. it claims to explain the present and the future. bin laden set out a series of ideals that isis is acting on in a more extreme way. we need to create a caliphate, there were people standing in the way, we need to created in a violent means.
bin laden, his ideas continue to influence even in death what is going on today. host: mary is out in maryland. republican line. you are on with peter bergen. "united states of jihad: investigating america's homegrown terrorists." guest: i have -- caller: i have a question about general petraeus? host: why do you ask that question? caller: i have been reading that he is the one in charge over there. host: he has been gone for quite a while. , i'm: general petraeus sure his advice is sought in the military or the white house because he has been such a long time in iraq and he travels to the region frequently. for anow, he is working financial company in new york city and that is his principal -- that is what consumes his daily life. he is not running the middle east. here in our political
season, several solutions to terrorism, to isis, have been proposed. can we carpet bomb isis out of existence? guest: no. isis is embedded into mosul, the second-largest city in iraq. they are also in a fairly sizable city in syria. isis is not running around in toe big convoy amenable being bombed from overhead. they are careful about their movements. the bombing campaign has been going on from us two years against them. carpet bombing is not going to work. tanning muslim immigration is not going to work.
the people profiled in the book are already here. to have the muslim american community on your side. you would not want to alienate muslim banning immigration, which would be illegal, and what about people who have one muslim parent and one christian parent? it does not make any sense. host: david is in dayton, ohio. a democrat. caller: good morning. i would like to ask a question. why weren't any of the american jihadists ever prosecuted in accordance with the constitution traders? guest: actually, adam gotand, a propagandist for al qaeda, was the first american to be charged with treason. he was killed in a drone strike in pakistan. there have been, in rare
bases where treason was the charge. i'm not a legal expert. i think treason has a particularly -- it is fairly high barred. you face the death penalty in treason cases. for prosecutors in a lot of these cases, the perpetrator, it is very clear what they have done. , it was easyassan charge him with murder. he did not contest the facts. i think treason is probably a .retty high bar prosecutors are looking at the simplest charge that will stick. let's not get too complicated. murder is often the easiest charge. sometimes, there is not even a .errorism charge
it is easier to go with a murder charge or there is a terrorism charge that produces a longer sentence if you can have a terrorism charge attacked to the underlying crime. , a lot ofr bergen things about the apple phone encryption. here is "usa today." they have syed farook and tashfeen malik coming into o'hare in 2014. with this be a valuable tool for the fbi and government people able to get into our phones? guest: we just don't know. we don't know what is on that phone. i will say this. my opinion is that there probably is not much on the fun that we don't know already. we already have their verizon phone accounts. we have an extensive search of their house. we have their computers, we have the fulsome confession of
several of the husband's best friends and gave them the weapons. we also have what was on the cloud from apple from the phone that was not the material encrypted on the phone. my guess is that there is not a hell of a lot on the phone. you might find out some extra details. i don't think there is any allegation that this couple was in touch in any real deep meaningful sense with isis. yes, they pledged allegiance on facebook, but i don't think there is going to be some huge revelation on the phone. tech companies are concerned with market share around the world. if it is known that the u.s. government has some kind of backdoor to their products, a lot of people around the world are not going to get an apple phone or use google. by the way, to some degree, the train is beginning to leave the station on this point. isis is not using american
social media platforms at all. iny are using one based berlin as a social media platform, encrypt it. if capitol hill legislated that all american tech companies have a backdoor, which i don't think it's going to happen necessarily, but if it did, it would be moot. isis has moved on because of their concern about this issue to other social media plan forms that are not american made. host: one of the things i learned in united states of hassan hadat nadal been tracked by the fbi, by the government, prior to what happened at fort hood. guest: he has had 18 e-mails to the american-born cleric in yemen. you look at these e-mails and they look pretty disturbing. they are about the permissibility of conducting suicide operations, the
permissibility of attacking fellow soldiers. wassan diego field office flagging this and was very concerned. they were concerned because he was in touch with two of the 9/11 hijackers. the washington field office has said the e-mails were consistent -- the blue san diego off. one portion of the fbi was diderned and another part not do the due diligence to find out more. katie is in silver springs maryland on our independent line. caller: good morning.
i guess the question comes from watching tv at night. about seen parities or mocking operations. is doeshe question satire have any effect on isis's recruitment efforts? host: is that where you were going? and mass media platforms. down: twitter just close 125,000 pro isis accounts, which i think is a pretty astonishingly large number. is probably not a group
practice and we hope to advance big ideas about how to change the united states for the better and do it in ways that are interesting to read and engaging to the public. we are not a government in waiting as many think tanks in washington are. we are trying to put big ideas into the public square. host: is there a connection to eric smith? guest: he is the chairman of the board. james in rochester, michigan. independent line. we are talking with peter bergen. "united states of jihad: investigating america's homegrown terrorists" is the new book. caller: good morning. you may have alluded to this, but my question is does mr. berg see similarities and comparisons between the patriot movement, of which we had a great example of january in oregon, and the jihad movement? my thinking is such that if you were to strip away any references to the constitution the literal
interpretation and then insert anything that has to do with the koran, they are one and the same? guest: i don't disagree with that at all. attack byhere was an a neo-nazi on a jewish community center in kansas and he killed three people and shouted hail hitler as he was being arrested. ,f he had shouted allah bar what would have been a big news story would have been even bigger. i completely accept the caller's point. political violence attacking the end of the day, there are a number of different motivations for that. and we seenazis raising antigovernment fanatics who are attacking police offices. sometimes, they are violent and killing people, as well. host: who is dr. mark sage men? guest: he is a former cia case
officer who wrote a very influential book about jihad. it looked at the number of different cases. made the book interesting book that these groups formed to do terrorist attacks. it is a social movement. you joined the jihad is a group of friends. that was true of the 9/11 hijackers. then he talked about the main aboutm of the west radicalizing. attack in paris was financed by the terrorist organization, not a bunch of lone wolves who got together and did the attack.
news is that the threat in the united states is mostly entirely lone wolves right now. that is good news because there is a natural ceiling to what one person or a pair of people can do. co-conspirators, it was an organized group that did the attack. --omegrown mill again militants killed 13 people. between a difference dot a large organization can and what one person can do when they are radicalizing in their own house. ,ost: boring file clerk tweets how would you go about defeating isis? guest: that is a great twitter
handle, by the way. there is no demand signal from the american public for if you really wanted to defeat isis, you would spend a 200,000 woman and iraq. when we had 150,000 servicemen and women in iraq, we were barely containing the iraqi civil war. if you are really serious, that is what you do. the only republican candidate who said what he would do was lindsey graham, who is out of the race now. he said he would send 20,000. the american public is not the managing a major groundwork again in the middle east. in the absence of that, we are left with the next president coming into office and they will probably do something similar to
what president obama is doing. a relatively small number of special forces, attacking the money supply, enlisting turkey to stop people. and basically an operation to squeeze isis overtime that will take several years. there is no political appetite in the country for something much bigger. the republicans have not said precisely what they plan to do when they critique president obama other than say things they do not make a lot of sense. host: we go back to where we started. you talked about managing. are we in a new normal? guest: i think we are all in a new normal. it is a low-level persistent threat that is going to continue for years. it is not an exit stencil threat. we have managed to contain it.
we have done many things to increase our defensive capabilities. al qaeda central, who attacked us on 9/11, is more or less out of business. isis is taken their place. think we will see more large-scale attacks in europe. will see isis-inspired attacks in the united states. many will be disrupted by the fbi. some, by the law of averages, will get through. texas -- that, or kind of thing will continue. host: john is calling in from northport, florida. me.er: excuse thank you for listening.
why are you not talking about the country of turkey? the reason why i say that is i grew up in pennsylvania. there was a clergyman out of the country of turkey who was put into the united states back in 1999. amsterdam, i spoke to him , regarding this man. there is now an investigation because of charter schools that he is under investigation, he is considered a terrorist, which the country of turkey put him on the terrorist list. the country of turkey hired robert amsterdam. host: john, where do you want to go with this? caller: is he familiar with this
man and i feel the country of turkey is funneling terrorists out of the country of turkey into syria? host: thank you, sir. with them not familiar case. according to isis' own , beginning about early 2015, they begin to complain about the fact that the turks have been much less sympathetic for people going through turkey to syria. turkey has begun to crack down on that. the foreign fighters going to syria are going through turkey. turkey has gone from a laissez-faire position to being pretty aggressive. they have turned people back and arrested people. route, itse down that is a lot harder to get into syria from the other countries that surround it.
host: solipsism guest: -- salfa afism. guest: it profiles people who were followers of the prophet of islam. very few are terrorist. very few christian fundamentalists attack abortion clinics, but almost everybody who attacks an abortion clinic in our country is a christian fundamentalist. that is a way to think about it. host: chris is in new haven, connecticut. caller: hi, i have a cousin who is now dead, but he was a raging and he wrote to the
shot and iran -- shah in iran. it just seems that it set the stage for all of this. he had to open a safe to drink his sixpack of beer, but when he left iran, he could take his beer anywhere he wanted, but he was dodging bullets. guest: the overthrow of the shah was arguably the most important moment for many jihadi people. this was a shia revolution in iran, but it was a fundamentalist move that overthrew a secular dictator backed by the united states. for a lot of people, that was a
significant event. it indicated that we can have a religious revolution, whether it foraudi arabia, egypt -- people like al qaeda, the iranian revolution was the model of what they hoped to achieve. host: how have we changed our tactics over the last 15 years? really bigink it scene in the book is george w. bush who had never been -- met the new head of the fbi because robert mueller had started the job the week before 9/11. he started saying, we believe it is al qaeda, here is the evidence. george w. bush interrupts him and says, this is what the fbi has been doing for time immemorial. your job is to prevent this from ever happening again.
that was a huge shift of the fbi. it was a debate about whether we should have a domestic intelligence agency. a kind ofs become domestic intelligence agency. there is a huge analytical core that did not exist on 9/11. there is also an army of informants trying to go around and find people inclined toward terrorism. the fbi is in the business of preventing attacks before they happen. they did not do it in this much more intentional way. host: see something, say something. has that been an ineffective campaign in anyway? guest: occasionally. they come up with interesting reports. the people with the most useful
information our peers and they are the most likely to come forward. family members are more likely to come forward, the most likely people to come forward are strangers. they have the least useful information. >> investigating america's home grown terrorists. brand new book out, thanks for being on the