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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  May 16, 2016 11:00am-12:01pm EDT

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>> [indiscernible] [indiscernible] [laughter] rep. nolan: i could not be very sure. although when i read it again -- [indiscernible] >> $1 million of taxpayer money for public television. we brought down the costs that way. i really don't know -- in.ll put my heart and soul that's a hard question. conversations] transparency regulation. >> are there a lot of willlicans out there that
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vote for this issue? rep. jolly: i don't think this is a partisan issue. you have a lot of messages on tv where you did not know who was accounting. what if you have legislation that said any outside group has to get the approval of one of the registered candidates? at least then the voters have .ccountability for the message but the problem is that creates unlimited coordination. i thought the was something there, but that can make it worse. you get out and coordinates. i think the american people are frustrated by the luck of transparency. of transparency. >> is there a message -- i assume you are raising money off
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of this as well? rep. jolly: there are unsolicited contributions coming in. are we seeing the consequences of myself not being engaged? yeah, we definitely are. but again, we talk about a lot of issues. border security. tax reform. the stop act. resonating act louder than any other issue? yeah. good policy makes for good politics. support political behind it? sure. so i'm going to continue to talk about it. >> how much have you raised? rep. jolly: i truly don't know. online -- you would have to look. $15,000. now we get letters in. a woman sends and five dollars. they might send in $1000.
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>> [indiscernible] rep. jolly: $400,000. >> [indiscernible] rep. jolly: yes, so you are given these. we have looked at that several times, both sides do it. you are given dues and there is some calculation based on the number of years you have in. the first session i was in was only six months or so. i think it was $80,000. i think we may have missed that. the next full term then was $400,000. somebody, if i was in the district 14 race and raised $2 million, do you go back to the same people? >> [indiscernible] disputed this?
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>> yes, they put out a memo calling you a liar. rep. jolly: [laughter] i think the liar was that the meeting never took place. i said i would be happy to release names if they wanted to escalate it. >> [indiscernible] ip. jolly: that was the last knew. one of the reasons i pushed back so hard -- look, i am not trying to judge colleagues in the party. that was never the intent. microsoft outlook, printed off the meeting notes from being meeting that day. when a memo comes from leadership, saying to meet at this time -- if you want to ramp this up, let's ramp this up. willully cooler heads prevail. i would be suppressed if they deny the $400,000. ask anybody in town who
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contributes to local parties -- they get solicitations to contribute to the party in the name of a certain member. that is the way that you meet your goals. yes, i'm not going to do it. >> just real quick one. thehad a lot to say about awareness of donald trump and bernie sanders. to donaldur response trump saying, it's all my money and bernie talking about our system is corrupt? where are they? have you talked to them? rep. jolly: no, i obviously do not have any interest to donald trump -- [laughter] a little social media solicitation to see if we could get his campaign interested. i know we have had staff conversations. i want to know where donald trump is on this issue, and part not to shine a light on this, but we can get this done.
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when people like donald trump and bernie sanders talk about this but my we can get it done. if donald trump tweeted support of the stop act, we would get this passed. i need the help of every american. that includes the retiree in iowa. that includes donald trump. [indistinct conversations]
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>> worked my way through university. i saw a study -- back in the
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day, you had to devote one hour of a days work to financial education. so, you could get a summer job, and you had to work all year to deliver your schooling. nowadays, it would take 17 hours education.y for your 17 hours a day? really? that's not going to work. -- thinkingeople -- it's an endgame journey. and you've got to play. to pass on to the next generation the same benefits we had, and maybe we can make a little better, huh? t ofhere is been a lo talk, especially around the republican side about contributions -- [indiscernible]
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rep. nolan: i think the limits of that are there. 2700 --r the primary, $2700 for the general. those are reasonable. that does not speak to all of the secret money, all of the dark money. >> right. [indiscernible] folks -- the outside [indiscernible] because the candidates or the parties are more accountable. >> can we take a picture really quick here? know, thereyou might be some truth to that, but --
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and let's gois behind the podium. do they have a press club thing on the front of it? >> yeah. >> now you can say what you really want to say. [laughter] >> great. >> all right. rep. nolan: [indiscernible] bonita springs. so, my congressman down there -- [indistinct conversations] >> at the couple more questions. rep. nolan: yeah?
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>> the supreme court has decided to send the obama care contraception mandate case back to the lower courts with no ruling your it a tweet from "the morning,spaper this bloomberg also reporting on the aferral in the case in which group wanted to ban contraceptives from their insurance plans and did not want the insurance plans to manage contraception for employees or students. the supreme court unanimously returning the case to the lower courts, saying the two sides should try to work out their differences. also today, president obama will be awarding the medal of valor public officers this morning. fors an award that is officers who have shown exceptional courage.
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and israel's ambassador will be speaking on c-span2. that will be at the anti-defamation league at 11:45. and the house is back at 2:00 eastern for debate on nine bills, including one involving the iris and identity theft. the senate needs today at 2:00. they will debate a judicial nomination and later in the week we will get military construction and zika virus research. we will have the house live on c-span and the senate over on c-span2. >> tonight on "the communicators," we spoke with republican congressman fred then and bill shuster from transportation and infrastructure committee. we also interviewed executives from the ford motor company about new technology,'s actor
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issues, and incoming spectrum options -- spectrum issues, and spectrum options. >> we are working on a major bill, legislation that is already passed. up moresee the fcc free spectrum, which will enable these devices to be built, to be used, to communicate. we are on the run. in the legislation, encouraging states to look at, real future,ld a dealing with the companies that are here today. what do you need for your technology to work better? >> from the very first generation of things we lost on most a decade ago, our real fut, dealing with the companies that are here focus has been on making your device as useful as possible in the car in a way that keeps your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road. >> ford understands there is a great demand for more spectrum. so we are working with our colleagues to come up with a
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sharing solution. we are working with our colleagues at in tia, our colleagues at the federal communications commission. >> watch "the communicators" tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span two -- c-span2. >> complements your c-span viewing. most house, senate, and congressional hearing stream live on the site. if you are away from your television, you can watch on your desktop, laptop, even your smart phone or tablet. an c-span archives all of its ongrams online in its c-span my library. if you miss an episode of any program, you can watch at your convenience. in fact, the c-span video thanry contains more 200,000 hours of c-span programs and is powerful search engine helps you find and watch
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programs going back many years. to watch on your television, c-span publishes its on-air schedule for all three networks and its radio station. just click on the schedule link. public service of your cable or satellite provider. check it out. it is on the web at >> president obama gave the commencement address this weekend to the 250th graduating class of rutgers university, new jersey. 2016uched on the presidential campaign. this is about 45 minutes. [applause] >> barack h. obama, by the authority vested in me by the
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board of governors of rutgers, new jersey, i am hereby honored to confer upon you doctor of law with all of the privileges and immunities to which it is entitled. in token of this, i present you diploma and this could, emblematic of the degree. [applause] pres. obama: hello, rutgers. [applause] how are you? thank you so much. thank you, everybody.
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please have a seat. thank you for the introduction. let me congratulate my extraordinarily worthy fellow honorary scarlet knights. dr. cornell and bill moyers. matthew, good job. [laughter] if you are interested, we can talk after this. [laughter] [applause] one of the perks of my job is honorary degrees. [laughter] i have to tell you, it impresses nobody in my house. now malia and sasha say, ok, dr. dad, see you later. can we have some money? [laughter]
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to the board of governors and chairman brown, the lieutenant governor, mayor cahill, mayor waller, members of congress, rutgers administrators, staff, faculty, friends and family. thank you for the honor of joining you at the 250th anniversary of this remarkable institution. [applause] most of all, congratulations to the class of 2016. [applause] i come here for a simple reason, to finally settle this pork roll versus taylor ham question. [laughter]
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i'm just kidding. there's not much i'm afraid to take on in my final year of office, but i know better than to get in the middle of that debate. [laughter] the truth is i came here because you asked. [applause] it is true that a lot of schools invited me to their commencement every year, but you are the first to launch a three-year campaign. [laughter] e-mails, letters, tweets, youtube videos. i even got three notes from the grandmother of your student body president. [laughter] and i have to say, that really sealed the deal. that was smart because i have a soft spot for grandmas.
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so i'm here, off exit nine, on the banks of build rail, at the site of one of the original nine colonial colleges. winners of the first ever college football game. [applause] one of the newest members of the big ten. home of what i understand to be a grease truck for a fat sandwich. [laughter] [applause] mozzarella sticks and chicken fingers on your cheesesteaks. i'm sure michelle would approve. [laughter] but somehow you have survived
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such death-defying acts and you also survived the daily jockeying for buses. i suspect that a few of you are trying to survive this afternoon after a late-night. you know who you are. [laughter] but however you got here, you made it. you made it. today, you join a long line of scarlet knights, whose energy and intellect have left this university to heights that the founders could not have imagined. 250 years ago, when america was still just an idea, a charter from the royal government, ben
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franklin son, established queens college. a few years later, handful of students gathered in a converted tavern for the first class. from that first class at a pub, rutgers has evolved into one of the finest research institutions in america. [applause] it is a place where you 3-d print prosthetic hands for children and devise rooftop wind arrays that can power entire office buildings with clean, renewable energy. every day, tens of thousands of students come here to this melting pot where ideas and cultures flow together among what might just be america's most diverse student body. [applause]
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here in new brunswick, you can debate philosophy with a classmate from south asia in one class, and then strike up a conversation on the w bus with a first-generation latino student from jersey city before sitting down for your site group project with a veteran going to the school on the post-9/11 g.i. bill. america converges here. and so many ways, the history of rutgers mirrors the evolution of america. the course by which we became bigger, stronger, richer, more dynamic, and a more inclusive nation. but america's progress has never been smooth or steady. progress doesn't travel in a straight line. it zigs and zags with fits and starts. progress in america has been
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hard and contentious and sometimes bloody. it remains uneven. at times, for every two steps forward, it feels like we take one step back. for some of you, this may sound like your college career. [laughter] it sounds like mine anyway. [laughter] which makes sense because measured against the whole human history, america remains a very young nation. younger even than this university. but progress is bumpy. it always has been. but because of dreamers and innovators and strivers and activists, progress has been this nation's hallmark.
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i am fond of quoting dr. martin luther king jr., who said, "the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice." it bends toward justice. i believe that. but i also believe that the arc of our nation does not been -- bend toward justice or freedom or equality or prosperity on its own. it depends on us. on the choices we make, particularly at certain inflection points in history. particularly when big changes are happening and everything seems up for grabs. the class of 2016, you are graduating at such an inflection point. since the start of the new millennia, we have already witnessed horrific terrorist attacks and war and the great recession. you have seen economic and technological and cultural
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shifts that are profoundly altering how we work and how we communicate, how we live, how we form families. the pace of change is not subsiding. it is accelerating. these changes offer not only great opportunities but also great peril. fortunately, your generation has everything it takes to lead this country towards a brighter future. i am confident that you can make the right choices the way -- a way through fear and paralysis for cooperation and innovation and hope. [applause] partly i'm confident because on average, you are smarter and better educated than my
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generation. although we probably have better penmanship. and we are certainly better spellers. [laughter] we did not have spell check back in my day. you're not only better educated, you have been more exposed to the world, more exposed to other cultures. you are more diverse, more environmentally conscious. you have a healthy skepticism for conventional wisdom. you have got the tools to lead us. precisely because i have so much confidence in you, i'm not going to spend the remainder of my time telling you exactly how you're going to make the world better. you'll figure it out. [laughter] you will look at things with fresh eyes, unencumbered by biases and blind spots and inertia and general crankiness of your parents and grandparents
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and old heads like me. i do have a couple of suggestions that you may find useful as you go out there and conquer the world. point number 1. when you hear someone longing for the good old days, take it with a grain of salt. [laughter] [applause] take it with a grain of salt. we live in a great nation and we are rightly proud of our history. we are beneficiaries of the labor and the grit and the courage of generations who came before. i guess it's part of human nature, especially in times of change and uncertainty to want to look backwards and long for some imaginary path where everything worked and the economy hummed and all
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politicians were wise and every child was well mannered and america did whatever it wanted around the world. guess what? it ain't so. [laughter] the good old days were not all that good. yes, there have been some stretches in our history where the economy grew much faster or when government ran more smoothly. there were moments when, immediately after world war ii, for example, or the end of the cold war, when the world bent more easily to our will. but those are sporadic. those moments, those episodes. in fact, by almost every measure, america is better and the world is better than it was 50 years ago, or 30 years ago, or even eight years ago. [applause]
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and by the way, set aside 150 years ago, pre-civil war. there's a whole bunch of stuff there that we could talk about. [laughter] set aside life in the 1950's, when women and people of color were systematically excluded from big chunks of american life. since i graduated in 1983, which isn't that long ago, i'm just saying. [laughter] since i graduated, crime rates, teenage pregnancy, the share of americans living in poverty, they are all down. the share of americans with college educations have gone way up. our life expectancy has as well.
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blacks and latinos have risen up the ranks in business and politics. [applause] more women are in the workforce. they are earning more money. [applause] although it is long past time that we pass laws that make women get paid the same for the same work. [applause] meanwhile, in the eight years since most of you started high school, we are also better off. you and your fellow graduates are entering the job market with better prospects than any time since 2007. 20 million more americans know the financial security of health insurance. we are less dependent on foreign oil. we have doubled the production of clean energy. we have cut high school dropout rates. we have cut the deficit by two thirds. marriage equality is the law of the land. [applause]
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and just as america is better, the world is better than when i graduated. since i graduated, an iron curtain fell. apartheid ended. there is more democracy. we virtually eliminated certain diseases like polio. we have cut extreme poverty drastically. we have cut infant mortality by an enormous amount. [applause] now i say all these things not , to make you complacent. we have got a bunch of big problems to solve. i say it to point out that change has been a constant in our history and the reason america is better is because we did not look backwards. we do not fear the future. we seized the future and made it our own. and that is exactly why it has always been young people like you who have brought about a
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-- brought about big change. because you don't fear the future. that leads me to my second point. the world is more interconnected than ever before and it is becoming more connected every day. building walls won't change that. [applause] look, as president, my first responsibility is always the security and prosperity of united states. as citizens, we all rightfully put our country first. but if the past two decades have taught us anything, it's that the biggest challenges we face cannot be solved in isolation. when overseas states start
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falling apart, they become breeding grounds for terrorism, ideologies of nihilism and despair that ultimately can reach our shores. when developing countries do not have functioning health systems, epidemics like zika or ebola can spread and threaten americans , too, and a wall won't stop that. [applause] if we want to close loopholes that allow large corporations and wealthy individuals to avoid paying their fair share of taxes, we have to have other countries help enforce financial laws. the point is, to help ourselves, we have got to help others, not pull up the drawbridge and try to keep the world out. an engagement does not mean deploying our military. there are times where we must take military action to protect
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ourselves and our allies. in awe of and grateful for the men and women who make up the finest fighting force the world has ever known. [applause] but i worry if we think that the entire burden of our engagement with the world is up to the 1% who serve in our military. the rest of us can just sit back and do nothing? they can't shoulder the entire burden. engagement means using all the levers of our national power and rallying the world to take on our shared challenges. you look at something like trade, for example. we live in an age of global supply chains and cargo ships that crisscross oceans and online commerce that can render borders obsolete. a lot of folks have legitimate concerns with the way globalization has progressed.
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that is one of the changes that has been taken place -- jobs shipped overseas, trade deals that sometimes put workers and businesses at a disadvantage. the answer isn't to stop trading with other countries. in this global economy, that's not even possible. the answer is to negotiate with other countries to raise their trade standards and environmental standards and to make sure they do not impose unfair tariffs on american goods or steal american intellectual , property. that is how we make sure that international rules are consistent with our values, including human rights. and ultimately that's how we , help raise wages here in america. that is how we help our workers compete on a level playing field. building walls won't do that. [applause] it won't boost our economy and it won't enhance our security. isolating or disparaging
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muslims, suggesting that they should be treated differently when it comes to entering this country, that is not just of the -- that is not just a betrayal of our values -- [applause] that's not just a betrayal of who we are. it would alienate our communities at home and abroad who are most important partners in the fight against violent extremism. suggesting that we can build a wall along our borders and blame our challenges on immigrants, that does not just run counter to our history as the world it contradicts the evidence that our growth and our innovation and our dynamism has always been spurred by our ability to attract strivers from every corner of the globe. that is how we became america. why would we want to stop it now?
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[applause] can't do it. [laughter] which brings me to my third point. facts, evidence, reason, logic, an understanding of science -- these are good things. [applause] these are qualities you want in people making policy. these are qualities you want to continue to cultivate in yourselves as citizens. [applause]
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that might seem obvious. [laughter] and that's why we honor bill moyers or dr. burnell. we traditionally have valued those things, but if you were listening to today's political debate, you might wonder where the strain of anti-intellectualism came from. [laughter] [applause] so class of 2016, let me be as clear as i can be. in politics and in life, ignorance is not a virtue. [laughter] [applause]
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it's not cool to not know what you're talking about. [laughter] that's not keeping it real or telling it like it is. that's not challenging political correctness. [laughter] that's just not knowing what you're talking about. [laughter] and yet, we have become confused about this. look, our nation's founders -- franklin, madison, hamilton, jefferson -- they were born of the enlightenment. they sought to escape superstition, and sectarianism, and tribalism, and know-nothingness. [laughter] they believed in rational thought and experimentation and the capacity of informed citizens to master our own fate. that is embedded in our constitutional desire. -- constitutional design. that spirit informs our ventures
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and our explorers -- the edison's and the wright brothers and the george washington carver's and the norman borlaugs and the steve jobs. that is what built this country. and today, in every phone in one of your pockets, we have access to more information than at any time in human history at a touch of a button. but ironically, the flood of information has not made us more discerning of the truth. in some ways, it has made us more confident in our ignorance. we assume whatever is on the web must be true. we search for sites that just reinforce our own predispositions. opinions masqueraded as fact. the wildest conspiracy theories are taken for gospel.
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now understand i am sure you , have learned during your years of college, and if not, you will learn soon, that there are a whole lot of folks who are book smart and have no common sense. that is the truth. [laughter] [applause] you will meet them if you have not already. [laughter] so the fact that they have a , fancy degree, you have to talk to them to see whether they know what they are talking about. qualities like kindness and compassion, honesty and hard work, they often matter more than technical skills and -- technical skills or know how. [applause] but, when our leaders express a disdain for facts, when they are not held accountable for repeating falsehoods and just making stuff up while actual
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, experts are dismissed as elitists, then we have a problem. it is interesting that if we get sick, we want to make sure the got to medical school and know what they are talking about. if we want to get on a plane, we want the pilots to be able to pilot the plane. and yet in our public lives, we suddenly think, i don't want someone who has done it before. [laughter] [applause] the rejection of facts the , rejection of reason, that is the path to decline. calls to mind the words of carl
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sagan, he said we can judge our progress by the courage of our questions and the depth of our answers, our willingness to embrace what is true rather than what feels good. the debate around climate change is a perfect example of this. i recognize it does not feel like the planet is warmer right now. [laughter] i understand. there was hail when i landed in newark. [laughter] but think about the climate change issue. every day there are officials in , high office, with responsibilities, who mock the overwhelming consensus of the world's scientists that human activities in the release of carbon dioxide and methane and other substances are altering
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, our climate in profound and dangerous ways. a while back, you might have seen a united states senator trotted out a snowball in the middle of winter as proof that the world was not warming. [laughter] i mean, listen, climate change is not something subject to political spin. there is evidence, there are facts, we can see it happening right now. if we don't act, if we don't follow through on the progress we made in paris and at home, your generation will feel the brunt of this catastrophe. so, it is up to you to insist upon an informed debate. imagine if benjamin franklin had seen that senator with a snowball, what he would think?
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imagine if your fifth grade science teacher had seen that? [laughter] he would get a "d" and he is a senator. look i'm not suggesting that , cold analysis and hard data are ultimately more important in life then passion, faith, love or loyalty. i am suggesting that those highest expressions of our humanity can only flourish when economy functions well and , proposed budgets add up and our environment is protected. and to accomplish those things, to make collective decisions on behalf of a common good, we have to use our heads and agree that facts and evidence matter and hold our leaders and ourselves accountable to know what the heck they are talking about. [applause]
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all right. i only have two more points. i know it is getting cold and you guys have to graduate. [laughter] point four, have faith in democracy. look i know it is not always , pretty. really, i know -- [laughter] i have been living it. but it is how we have made , progress in this nation. it is how we banned child labor, cleaned our air and water, passed social security and medicare. none of these changes happen ed overnight. it was not because a charismatic leader got everybody to agree on everything. it did not happen because of a massive political revolution. it actually happened over the
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course of years, of advocacy, and organizing. and alliance building. and dealmaking. and the changing of public opinion. it happened because ordinary americans, who cared participated in the political , process. [applause] look, if you want to change this country for the better, you better start participating. i will give you an example on a lot of people's minds, the growing inequality in our economy. over much of the last century, we have unleashed the strongest economic engine the world has ever seen, but over the past two decades our economy has become
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, more and more unequal. the top 10% of earners take in half of all income in the u.s. in the past, a top ceo made 20 or 30 times the income of the average worker. today, it is 300 times. wages are not rising for families. if we want to reverse those trends, there are a bunch of policies that would make a big difference. we could raise the minimum wage. [applause] we could modernize our infrastructure. we could invest in early childhood education. we can make college more affordable. [applause] we can close tax loopholes on hedgefund managers and use that money to give tax breaks to help families with childcare or retirement. and if we did these things, we would help to restore the sense that hard work is rewarded and
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build an economy that works for everybody. the reason some of these things have not happened, even though the majority of people approve, is really simple. it is not because i wasn't proposing them. it wasn't because the facts and the evidence showed they wouldn't work. it was because a huge chunk of americans, especially young people, do not vote. in 2014, voter turnout was the lowest since world war ii. fewer than one in five young people showed up to vote. 2014. and the four who stayed home determined the course of this country as much as the one who voted. because apathy has consequences. it determines who are congress is, what policies they prioritize. it even, for example, determines
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whether a really highly qualified supreme court nominee receives the courtesy of a vote in the united states senate. [applause] yes, big money in politics is a huge problem. we have got to reduce its influence. yes, special interests and lobbyists have disproportionate access. but, contrary to what we hear sometimes from both the left as well as the right the system is , not as rigged as you think and is not as hopeless as you think. politicians care about being elected, and especially reelected. if you vote and elect a majority that represents the majority of your views, you will get what you want. if you opt out or stop paying attention, you won't. it is that simple. it is not that complicated. [applause] one of the reasons people do not vote is because they do not see
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the changes they were looking for right away. well, guess what? none of the great strides in our history happened right away. it took thurgood marshall and the naacp decades to win brown v board of education. and another decade after that to secure the civil rights act. it took more time after that for it to start working. it took a proud daughter in new jersey, alice paul years of , organizing marches and hunger strikes and protests and drafting hundreds of pieces of legislation and working with congressional leaders before she and other suffragists helped win women the right to vote. [applause] each stage along the way required compromise.
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sometimes you took half a loaf. it you forged allies. sometimes you lost on an issue and came back to fight another day. that is how democracy works. you have got to be committed to participating not just to get immediate gratification, you have to be a citizen full-time, all the time. and it participation means voting, and means compromise and organizing and advocacy it also , means listening to those who do not agree with you. i know a couple of years ago, folks on this campus got upset that condoleezza rice was supposed to speak at commencement. i don't think it's a secret that i disagree with dr. rice and many policies from that administration. but the notion that this community, or country would not
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be served by hearing her or shutting out what she had to say, i believe that is misguided. [applause] i don't think that's how democracy works best, when we not even willing to listen to each other. [applause] i believe that is misguided. if you disagree with somebody, bring them in and ask them tough questions. [applause] hold their feet to the fire and make them defend their positions. if somebody has a bad or offensive idea, prove it wrong. engage it. debate it. stand up for what you believe in. don't be scared to take somebody on. don't feel like you got to check your ears off because you are too fragile and somebody might offend your sensibilities. go at them. if they are not making any sense. use your logic and reason and words.
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and by doing so, you will strengthen your own position. and you will hone your arguments, and maybe you will learn something and realize you do not know everything. and you may have a new understanding, not only of what your opponents believe, but what you believe. either way, you win. and more importantly, our democracy wins. [applause] so, anyway, all right. that's it, class of 2016. [laughter] a few suggestions on how you can change the world. except maybe i have one last suggestion. just one. [laughter] [applause] and that is gear yourself for , the long haul. whatever path you choose -- business, nonprofit, government, education, health care, the arts. whatever it is, you are going to have setbacks.
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you will deal occasionally with foolish people. you will be frustrated. you will have a boss that is not great. you won't always get everything you want, at least not as fast as you want it. you have to stick with it. you have to be persistent. and success, however small and incomplete, success is still -- -- success is still success. i always tell my daughters, better is good. it may not be perfect or great, but it is good. that is how progress happens, in societies and our own lives. don't lose hope. sometimes you hit a roadblock. don't lose hope in the face of
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naysayers and certainly don't , let resistance make you cynical. cynicism is so easy and cynics don't accomplish much. as a friend of mine who happens to be from new jersey, a guy named bruce springsteen, once said -- [applause] they spend their lives waiting for a moment that just don't come. don't let that be you. don't waste your time waiting. if you doubt you can make a difference, look at the impact your fellow graduates are already making. look at what matthew is doing. look at somebody like jazz, who began organizing anti-bullying assemblies to help kids handle bias and discrimination. [applause]
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look at somebody like madison little, who grew up dealing with health issues and started wondering what it would be like if you live somewhere else? he took charge of a student nonprofit and work with people in australia and cambodia to address the aids epidemic. our generation has so much energy to impact the world, he said. my peers give me hope that we will overcome the obstacles in society. that is you. is it any wonder i am optimistic? throughout our history a new , generation of americans has reached up and bent the arc of history in the direction of more freedom and more opportunity, and more justice. class of 2016, it is your turn now to shape our nation's destiny. so get to work! make sure the next 250 years are better than the last. good luck.


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