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tv   Senate Foreign Relations Committee Takes Up NATO Canada and U.K....  CSPAN  July 20, 2017 9:30am-12:14pm EDT

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foreign relations committee will come to order. we have a number of distinguished nominees here today and we welcome them. we also have a number of very distinguished introducers. we welcome you and thank you for coming to our committee. in order for you to be able to go ahead and do other business today we will defer relative to making opening statements and let you go ahead and do what you need to do. we look forward to those comments and we realize you'll like to go elsewhere. i know senator mcconnel is coming today. why don't we start in the order of seniority. we appreciate so much you being
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here. >> we welcome you all. thank you for being here today. if you will, begin. >> thank you mr. chairman and ranking member of the committee. it is a pleasure to be back here. sit the second time in less than a couple of weeks. it's not often i darken the door but as long as a president keeps nominating texans i promise to keep coming back often. she is truly someone that needs no introduction but i be live her one any way. had the pref lij of serving alongside of ckay.
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she is tireless. y she would not stop until she achieved her objective. most importantly she always did what she thought was the right thi thing for texas, whether it was working for republicans or democrats that was always her guiding star. as i think about the type of individual best suit today represent the u.s. i can't think of no one better than kaykay is not and was in the afraid of working across the aisle.
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it's the way she was able to get so much done on behalf of the nation. she has been a fierce advocate for families. it is no exageuatigeratioexagge. during her time her she served on the intelligence committee, the armed services committee as well. i know strong di ploemt si guided her committee work and will prepare her well for our duties in brussels.
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no, sir one better prepared to successfully navigate and strengthen our relationships on the world stage. kay will do it and do it with poise and grace. i look forward to supporting her confirmati confirmation. thank you mr. chairman and members of the committee for allowing me to say a few words on behalf of kay bailey
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hutchison. she helped lead organizations like the united way of bluegrass, ymca of central kentucky and the center for rural development. she also served on the board of trustees of our shared alma mater at the university of kentucky. the senate confirmed.
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it is a new partnership, her ability to build consensus among international stake holders served her well at the u.n. and also makes her an ideal candidate to be the next ambassador to canada. they are closely enter connected share aing a common history andt of values. it is founded on trade relati s relations. the relationship with canada is sp particularly important from k kentucky. it is the commonwealth number one export market maintaining the strong relationship between our two nations is vital. so she has the necessary skills to continue the long history of friendship between our nations. her work will continue to serve
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very well. i would also like to recognize joe craft, another extraordinary k k kentuckian. thank you for allowing many we to testify in behalf of kelly. i appreciate your consider atio. we look forward to her nomination. >> thank you. if you feel like you want to help open the floor you're welcomed to also leave. thank you so much for coming. thank you both. senator cruz. >> mr. chairman and members of the committee, it is a privilege to join you this morning especially with the great honor of introducing my friend and a true texas legend, senator kay bailey hutchison. many of you served with her and know her well as a friend and colleague. all of you i know respect kay
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and when you saw her successor. >> i don't think that's the case. >> but i have to say, i think kay bailey hutchison is an extraordinary choice. the president has chosen well and i am confident that the senate will agree there that assessment. kay's history in texas, she was born in galveston and grew up in lamar. she has her law degree at the university of texas. her husband having served in the texas house and also in the state republican party and their two children are the joys of her life. hutchison began her career in the texas house and served our home state for 20 years where
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she built a distinguished record of service ton senate armed services committee and defense and military sub committees that will give her direct and powerful insight into the security issues facing europe and north america. few states men have the qualifications, relationships and graftas that she brings to this position. after year of inadequate resourcing she lead to rebuild our military and help prepare to meet the new demands of the global war on terror. after the conflict she lead the first senate to the region. there she met with nato leaders to discuss the future of our nato endeavor and to bring stability to the region. in fact she toured every major conflict since her arrival in
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1993. from bosnia to iraq senator hutchison made it a priority to meet with commanders in areas of combat and to make sure that they had the resources that our military need today carry out their mission. she has a heart for the men and women serving our nation. her commitment will serve her well in this new role protecting americas and our ally's interest as u.s. ambassador to nato. she also has an eye for talent. when i arrived in this body in my office among the staff we had a john cornin mafia. we had a rick perry mafia as part of the staff. there was no bigger group than the kbh mafia which is a large chunk of our team because she has such a good eye for talent and she trains them well.
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that will serve her well as our ambassador. it is to represent america and strengthen friendships and alliances. i'm prod to support her nomination. >> thank you for being here. we have had two very strong willed senators in this seat. so we can save the best for last. i will introduce senator rubio. >> it is to be the ambassador and to the republic. it is a cofounder and managing partner of iron hill investments. he was the chairman of the port
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authority of new york and new jersey responsible for sea ports, bridges, tunnels and the world trade center. it was the lower manhattan corporation which was formed after the 11th of september of 2001. it is for two years from 2001 to 2003. he was a senior adviser from '09 to '15. both in new york from 1990 to 2011, spent 23 years where he was cohead of the division. he has been honored by the american jewish committee. national conference for community injustice, liberty science center, boys and girls club of new jersey and new jersey alliance for action. as you can see he has strong links. it is very typical of florida.
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but i know him as a resident of florida and i have known him for quite a while w. i'm excited. it will be an important ally. he is deeply qualified for this and we are grateful for his willingness to serve his country. thank you mr. chairman. >> thank you very much. >> senator lieberman. >> thanks. it's good to be back here. let me say first just a loud sincere amen to all of the positive words said about kay bailey hutchison. i'm honored to be here to introduce to the committee kay t. mcfarland.
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k. kayt. -- you can see it in the documents before youchlt if you had a chance to meet her you probably appreciate it. it is in a very unique way about the ark of kay t.'s life and service. she worked as an assistant when he was national security adviser in the national securities and stayed with him through the nixon and ford administrations. the second is from mcmaster who kay t. has worked with as deputy national security adviser.
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we are in the sixth decade. it has taken us through the opens and downs of life. it allows high principal they will bring with them if confirmed to singapore it is to the important country that are such great allies. i thought that i would tell you
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two story to indicate briefly who these people are. on election night the first time i ran for the u.s. senate when i got elected i was an underdog. it was very close. it wasn't until well after 11:00 p.m. i felt confident enough to go down and declare victory. we all remember the maxum that has a thousand parent defeat. it had filled up amazingly as returns begin to come in. somebody came over to me and said somebody named mcfarednelan the foechbphone. it was such a draw back. i went and took the call.
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she said she had arn narmt new york. if you need a place to live for a while why don't you use it. i got swept up. about a month later because she is going to stay with our kids until they finish school. i had one of those moments where you say where am i going to live? i remember the call and they graciously had my as their tenant as five or six months. i would add that she once operated a shelter far homeless senator and did it well. the second is a very different kind of story. you'll note on her resume her work life has been divided into
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two. one of them is a story that says a lot about her. in 1995 allen's first wife now died within a short period of time. they left a son who was essentially alone. it's a long story but the bottom line is that they stepped forward and adopted luke and have raised him as their child. it really says a lot about them. i grew up with a phrase that if you save one life it is as if you saved the entire world. they saved one life. so for all of these reasons, both professional and personal,
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i recommend mcfarland. i truly believe she deserves your support, that she deserves nonpartisan support from the senate. thank you very much. >> we thank you both very much for being here. before i turn to senator menendez, who's going to introduce our next ambassador nominee, y'all are welcome if you wish to go about other business. we really do appreciate both of you being here and elevating our meeting. senator menendez. >> thank you, mr. chairman. we generally say that the united states and the united kingdom have a special relationship. and indeed there are few other nations with whom our bilateral relationship is as expansive and important as the u.k. that relationship is based on shared value, democracy, respect for human rights and having
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shaped the post war international order. maintaining and strengthening this relationship is critical for the united states' national security, for our trans-atlantic relationships in general and many of our foreign engagements around the world. some fumble in their execution. hailing from the great state of new jersey, i have no doubt that robert woody johnson is up to the task and will be an excellent representative of the united states. he has a wide range of civic endeavors and also sits on the council of foreign relations. as the united kingdom continues
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to sort out the practical implications of brexit, including future trade deals, his successful private sector experience i think will be critical. and his extensive management experience will be an asset in running a large embassy in london. he has assured me that he will consult with this committee and i believe it is critically important that our embassy in london has the leadership it needs to continue strengthening the already deep bond between the two nations. >> thank you so much. i apologize for not knowing you were introducing until just a moment ago. we thank you for that
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introduction. i'm glad that all of you are here together and i appreciate your desire to serve the country in the way that you have. we're going to consider, as we all know, the u.s. ambassador to canada, our largest single trading partner as of may 2017. throughout the cold war and to today, canada has stood shoulder to shoulder with norad. we have close intelligence sharing and law enforcement ties. canada values its relationship with the united states and we value our very close relationship with our neighbor to the north. this year prime minister trudeau joined vice president pence in speaking to the u.s. national governors association. canada also supports working with the u.s. and mexico to update the north american free trade agreement. i will also have a conversation with our nominee as u.s.
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permanent representative to nato. nato facing a threat of an increasingly antagonistic russia which has occupied crimea and eastern regions of ukraine, a country once considered a contender for nato membership. they know that both nato itself and the individual member states are members of the u.s. led coalition conducting air strikes against isis. we thank you for being here to do that. we will look to the nominee to the united kingdom as well. the bilateral u.s./u.k. relationship has grown into a global network of trade partnerships that fight terrorism and drive economic
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growth. united kingdom has not just deployed its military beside ours, it has helped build the international framework that includes the united nations and nato together. our countries work together to make the world a safer and more prosperous place. we'll have a chance to engage the nominee to be ambassador to italy, where we also have positive and strong relations. italy is now on the u.n. security council. we thank you for being here. lastly, we'll consider the nominee to singapore. singapore is one of our strongest security partners in southeast asia and plays rotational host to the u.s. naval vessels operating in the region. singapore is also a key economic and trading partner for the united states and the region.
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we thank you for being here. i really am elated that all of you are here together. i think you're going do an outstanding job for our nation. i know you're honored to be nominated to these positions. with that i turn to ranking member ben carden. >> let me welcome all five of our nominees and their families. first, i really want to thank each of you for being willing to serve your country. and thank you families, because we recognize this cannot be done without a supportive family. we thank you. the five positions that are being nominated are extremely important to our country. mr. chairman, i hope that we'll be a little bit lenient as far as the time limits are concerned, because these are extremely important countries and i know members may have questions that they want to ask to more than one witness. secondly, i would ask our nominees that we do questions
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for the record. i know we're not going to get through all the questions we would want to ask you directly and our questions for the record are very important. i know i'm going to defer a lot of my questions for the record. because of the large number that is here and the importance of the countries that are represented, that this is our opportunity get important issues air aired in the portfolios that you'll be responsible for. it's particularly a pleasure to have ckay bailey hutchinson.
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we know that russia's aggression really is a major concern to many of our nato partners and our strategies on how we deal with russia's incursions into ukraine and georgia, moldova is a real challenge to nato. we know afghanistan is a continued challenge to nato. you're going to have your plate full and we look forward to working with you on this committee.
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whenever we need help, it's those countries that we turn to first to help us in regards to our national security concerns. so these are really close partners. the chairman knows that i always raise issues concerning human rights. you might think that when you're looking at four democratic countries, that maybe that's not as important. promoting perse ining american always important. our strength is in our values and our values are respect for human rights. particularly as it relates to singapore we do have issues. singapore are ranked near the bottom in their protection of many of the human rights issues. the reporters without borders
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ranked singapore 151th out of 180 nations in its annual world press freedom index behind neighbors such as burma, cambodia and malaysia. we will be asking you, ms. macfarland, how you will represent american values in singapore, a friend and trading partner and a major commerce center as to how we can get advancements on these universal human rights i believe are very very important. i really did enjoy the conversations i had with several of you. i would just under score the point that senator menendez said in regards to mr. johnson and mrs. craft, there's a real genuine desire to work with this committee, members of congress to further the missions of the united states in the countries that you represent. so i look forward to a robust discussion and i thank you all for your willingness to serve our country. >> thank you for your comments.
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senator hutchinson we're glad to have you back. since you've done this so many times on this side of the dais, we thought it would be good for you to lead off. i understand that at least the first five rows is family members and friends. the entire audience may be that. please feel free to introduce your family and friends that are here with you. we thank them for their willingness to support you in the effort you're getting ready to take, senator hutchinson. thank you for being here. >> thank you so much, mr. chairman. i don't have my two teenagers here. many of you knew my littteenage when they were babies because i was walking the halls with them. they're back in dallas. >> we do hope to get you to nato by the time school enrollment starts. >> hey, thank you.
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it's so important that my son start school on time. i thank both of you for acknowledging that. i also want to thank you, mr. chairman and mr. ranking member, for your courtesies throughout this process and your leadership and the way you work this committee together. i appreciate it so much. i appreciate all the members of the committee and i know how much you spend in time and effort to make sure that our foreign policy, our ambassadors, our state department, our military and the defense department are covered in the senate. you do a great job and i thank you. i'm not used to being on this side of the podium, as you have said. but i had many great years here. i'm here if you consent to have the opportunity to represent our country in a different way but in an area with which i'm very
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familiar. i visited troops in harm's way in every conflict that we had when i was in the senate. very often there were nato members with those troops. bosnia, kosovo, iraq and afghanistan. i've met with the military and diplomatic leaders as well. and i have to say that our diplomatic side, which is one that i hadn't been as familiar with, was amazing. in bosnia when we went in, the serbs were still shooting in the hills. our ambassador reside inside a bombed out building that didn't have running water. he slept on a cot to serve our country when we first went into bosnia. i visited afghanistan right after our troops started going in. i stayed in a russian built
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institution in the hangar that the russians had built near a runway in afghanistan was the only place that the troops could sleep. so there were hundreds of cots under this leaky roof hangar and all they had with them were a duffel bag with their uniforms. they were making way for the presence that we would have there for the building of a hospital, for the building of barracks so that those who followed would have a place to do their job. that's what our people do in the foreign service and the military. and my appreciation for them is boundless. i look forward to being an effective partner for our policies, for our military, for our allies who are also making sacrifices for our mutual defense. nato is the most successful defense alliance in the history of the world. it was formed in 1949. and at the time, president
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truman said, following two terrible world wars in that century, by this treaty, we are not only seeking to establish freedom from aggression and from the use of force in the north atlantic community, but we are also activity striving to promote and preserve peace throughout the world. it was determined that an alliance between europe and north america sends a message of solidarity that would deter aggression and help avoid a third world war. and in the event of conflict, make earlier action against a common enemy more effective in protecting freedom for its democratic members. does nato exist to protect allies against any threat of aggression? yes. that was nato's original mission. it remains relevant today. but nato has also evolved into much more, because today's security environment now encompasses a much broader array of challenges includinge ining i
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asymmetric warfare. rogue nations such as iran and north korea have developed ballistic missile capabilities and may be close to achievie ii nuclear weapons, a threat to all the 29 members of the alliance and our partners. russian disinformation campaigns and malign influence targeting nato allies and partners seek to undermine western democratic institutions and principles and sew disunity in our longstanding trans-atlantic bonds. in its evolution, many questions are raised. does every country in the alliance meet its agreed commitment? no. improvements are in order. president trump has called for a stronger effort from allies not
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meeting the wales pledge on defense investment. 2% of gdp on defense and 20% of total defense expenditures on defense modernization. allies need to meet this commitment. we also stand firm on article 5. president trump has said that each ally should honor the pledge to increase spending because it will make all of our efforts more robust, our deterrents credible and the cost of our collective defense will not unfairly rest on the shoulders of american taxpayers. i believe, as you have said in your opening statements, that the shared values of democracy, protection of human rights, individual liberty and rule of law bind all nato members. this bond must be reinforced because it does utilinite us.
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i have said and will continue to say that this alliance is something like the world has never seen. our allies have been on our side throughout history. our allies especially have been with us in afghanistan, which has been a tough road. they have stood with us in solidarity in afghanistan, where over 900 troops of our allies and partners have given their lives alongside u.s. soldiers for more than 15 years. our nato allies are our core partners in diplomacy and on the battlefield, our partners of first resort in dealing with old and new threats to the security of our people. the strength of this alliance benefits every member. if confirmed, i hope to represent the integrity of the american commitment to be a formidable enemy and a reliable ally. america should be both. in closing, i want you to know
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how much i appreciate the hard work you do. i've been there and i know that every one of you love america like i do and you are here to make sure that our country is the strongest and safest for all of your constituents. and i want to make sure that we are able to preserve what our fore fathers and mothers gave to us and fought for and died for in many instances, security, freedom and an indominable spirit. >> i'd like to express our thoughts and prayers with senator mccain and his family. thank you, chairman corker, ranking member carden and members of the committee. a special thanks to my fellow
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kentuckyians. senator paul, who has a friend and member of this committee make me feel right at home. it is an honor to be with you today as the president's nominee to be the u.s. ambassador to canada. i am humbled to be entrusted with this responsibility to lead our engagement with such an important friend, ally and neighbor. i have not made this journey alone. with me today are my husband joe, two of our children, jane and kyle, my brother mark and his wife elizabeth, our close friend john wyatt. my daughter mia is home preparing for her wedding in two weeks. my sister is home watching from kentucky. my parents have passed away, but they gave me the gift of unconditional love and an unwavering faith in god. i appreciate the confidence that
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president trump, vice president pence and secretary tillerson have shown in my. and if confirmed, i commit to work every day to live up to their trust in collaboration with the most talented and dedicated public servants. they are truly exceptional. on a personal note, i'm a testament to the fact that if this young girl who grew up 671 mile s southwest from here can e nominated by the president of the united states as the first woman to serve as the ambassador to canada, anything is possible when you work hard. and i know that senator shaheen knows this firsthand as i've been so inspired by her public service. my first diplomatic experience with canada was in 2007 when i represented the u.s. government with the american people at the opening of the united nations general assembly. while observing several multilateral negotiation teams, i experienced how the
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american/canadian relationship can be a powerful force around the world. i share the president's belief that the united states is deeply fortunate to have a neighbor like canada. just three weeks after his inauguration on february 13 th, president trump host eed prime minister trudeau. as president trump said that day, our two nations share much more than a border. we share the same values, we share the love, truly a great love of freedom and we share a collective defense. american and canadian troops have gone to battle together, fought wars together and forged the special bonds that come when two nations shed blood together. today the economies of the united states and canada are similarly intertwined. we have one another's number one trading partner. if confirmed, i will work tirelessly to further enhance our strong economic partnership. the most extensionive and
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integrated economic relationship of any two nations in the world. the nearly 2 billion in goods and services and 400,000 people crossing the border every day are testaments to the strength of this relationship. i believe we can do better. a significant part of our economy is our energy relationship. a robust and secure energy grid and a strong and resilient energy infrastructure. recognizing that our cooperation on energy is inextricably linked the environment, i will also work to advance our shared environmental goals, stewardship of our common watersheds, land
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mass, wildlife, farm life and the air we breathe, from coast to coast to coast as the canadians say, the atlantic, the pacific and the arctic. at 5,525 miles, the u.s./canada border is the longest shared border in the world. we in kentucky know a few things about borders. we have seven states with whom we share a border. the only trouble comes when they go home from tennessee and inafti indiana after losing to the kentucky wildcats. the united states is fortunate to have a strong commitment to democratic values and works tirelessly to promote peace, prosperity and human rights around the world. canada is our partner in norad and nato. i acknowledge the canadian troops who have served bravely alongside americans throughout our shared history. if confirmed, i will be a
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respectful steward of this partnership with canada. >> thank you for your willingness to serve in this capacity. mr. johnson. >> yes. i would like to offer my family's prayers to the mccain family and wish for a speedy recovery as well. chairman corker, ranking member carden and distinguished senators, i'm deeply honored to appear before you today. i'm grateful to president trump for nominating me to be the united states ambassador to the united kingdom of great britain and northern ireland. i'm also deeply humbled that i may be permitted to act as ambassador to the president and the american people. both family history and personal experience confirm to me that public service is both a privilege and an obligation and that the ties between the united states and the united kingdom are profoundly important. today i'm joined here by my wife
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suzanne, by my children jamie, daisy, brick and jack. and most gratifying, my 97-year-old mother betty, who during world war ii served in the navy teaching celestial navigation to navy sailors. she inspired me and i can assure you she expects nothing less than the best of me right now. if confirmed, i will not disappoint. i'm committed to the united states historic partnership with the u.k., almost 100 years ago my grandfather opened the first johnson & johnson facility in the u.k. that company is there to this day. during world war ii he also served in the military to help
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small and medium sized business to play a direct role in the united states' wartime partnership with the united kingdom. this partnership, this special relationship endures today. i first travelled to the united kingdom more than 50 years ago and have been back many times for both business and pleasure. i care deeply about the united kingdom, our relationship with it. if confirmed, i will devote all of my energies to strengthening and deepening that relationship. as the u.k. undergoes a complex transaction politically and economically, there are opportunities and challenges for the united states. i believe i can make a contribution by drawing both on my business and philanthropic experience. i've had the privilege of managing many organizations bringing people from diverse backgrounds and experience and
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perspective. it's my belief that diversity of experience and expertise are strengths in achieving shared goals and priorities. in my years working with the robert w. johnson foundation to improve health and health care for americans, i learned the value of patience and tenacity in meeting challenges. the foundation's 40-year multibillion dollar effort to reduce smoking is just one example. after my daughter jamie was diagnosed with lupus, i launched the alliance for lupus research in 1999. i did this not only for my daughter, but to help the 1.5 million americans that suffer from lupus, 90% of whom are women stricken with lupus. it took years to bring together this organization with the best scientists, organizational structure, figuring out how to
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raise money. we're now the world's largest funder of lupus research, nongovernment funded lupus research to treat, cure or prevent lupus. owning the new york jets has taught me the importance of commitment and perseverance. right. exactly. one example of that, not a football example, is our ten-year effort to build a stadium. it's very difficult to build a stadium and we accomplished the objective. we built a privately funded 1$16 billion stadium in the great state of new jersey. if confirmed by the senate, my mission will be to strengthen america's special relationship with the u.k. the u.k. has been our most steadfast ally in promoting freedom, fairness and the rule
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of law. my first task there will be to know the talent pred profession at the embassy. i over been thoroughly impressed by the dedication of the men and women of the state department. the embassy is home to many of our best people. i want to inspire and enable our embassy to provide exemplary service to american citizens and businesses. if confirmed, my goal would be to provide strong leadership needed to preserve and strengthen once again this absolutely special and critical relationship. thank you very much. >> thank you. we very much appreciate your comments and your willingness to serve in this capacity. based on my experiences over the last few weeks, we could use a little help with celestial navigation on health care. so thank you very much.
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eisenberg. >> thank you. senator marco rubio for your kind introduction and full description of my background. it is with sincere humility that i appear before you today. i'm most grateful to president trump to make me his nominee for a position of ambassador to the italian republic and the republic of san morino without compensation. i'd also like to express my thanks to secretary tillerson for his support and confidence. since senator rubio and senator lieberman were so kind to say a few words, i'd like to depart from what i was going to do and read my history and my interest in serving our country in italy. although it's interesting to
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note, senator menendez, were he here, would testify i've lived many years of my life in the state of new jersey while i worked in new york and i have learned that there are some 20 million americans of italian desce descent. i am confident that the largest percentage of them live in new jersey and new york, and hence they are my neighbors and some of my closest friends. i'm going to depart and talk on why i want to do this. as senator lieberman pointed out, ellen macfarland's and my late stage in our so far distinguished careers if confirmed. this is hard for me a little bit to depart from script, but it was a day not too dissimilar from this.
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it was a sunny day, not quite so warm. and i had a meeting that had been called suddenly and drew me from my original point of departure. that morning when i left that meeting, i was met by two police officers from the port authority of new york and new jersey, who asked me to get into the car and informed me that the port authority, the towers had been struck not by one airplane, but by two. it began one of the most difficult periods not only in my life and your lives, but in the lives of our country and the world. my wife was picked up and brought from new york to our home in new jersey and i was brought to a makeshift destination jersey city, where we waited for survivors to come
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and learn offend ted of the hit pentagon and the crash in pennsylvania. i was asked by the police to organize what staffer we had f the police. you know, it's amazing. there are these plates in your life that change. there's birth, death, marriage, graduation. it was one of those unique shifts in life that has changed us all forever. we put together a makeshift organization around and tried to identify who was lost. i learned that the person who had taken my life at windows on the world had been lost that morning. the head of police, who had climbed to the 27th floor and called me to say he was coming up to get me, learned that i wasn't there and died that day. i learned over the subsequent days that we had lost 84 people with whom i worked and thousands
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of americans. the port authority is a unique organization. it was my seventh year. it was the day before i was to retire from that office. i remained for 90 days after that. i traveled daily from our jersey headquarters to what was then called ground zero. i acted as a spectator amongst heros. i served coffee, i gave hugs, i saw the families. it hurt. the following few months as my term there came to an end, governor pataki of new york asked me to serve on the lower manhattan development corp which was to rebuild lower manhattan and asked me to chair the family of victims committee and transportation committee, clearly the hardest task of my life. when i left that, i said to the
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people in those conditions and to the families of the port authority, to my children and grandchildren, who i neglected to introduce as i sat down, but who sit behind me, i pledge that if any opportunity ever came up for me to contribute to the welfare of our country economically or through security, i would do whatever it takes. if confirmed, i pledge my faithful service and i thank you for this opportunity. >> thank you for those touching comments and your desire to serve in this capacity. ms. macfarland. >> thank you so much. and lou thank you for sharing that with all of us. we all were someplace september 11th and the fact that you were where you were has made our lives a lot better. and thank you chairman corker and ranking member carden and
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the members of the committee for the honor of addressing you and testifying before you for the nomination to be the ambassador to singapore. i'd like to thank my friend joe lieberman for his very kind introduction and for the family trip th friendship that spans over half a century. senator lieberman is a man that encourages us all to be better people and we're all the better for having him in our lives. i'm also deeply humbled by dr. henry kissinger's letter endorsing me to serve in this position. he's been a mentor and a friend for decades, beginning at george washington in 1970. and then coming full circle when i joined the trump administration in the very same west wing office that i had started working in 45 years
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before. i'm also thankful for that very strong endorsement of general hr mcmaster. he's man of great intellect and strategic vision. i'd like to thank president trump for believing in me and selecting me for two positions in his administration. i wouldn't be here without the encouragement of john mccain. in 2005 the two of us stood in the rain outside the naval academy football stadium and he encouraged me to get back into public life and to run for office. so i think all of us wish him and his wonderful family godspeed and frankly as he slays yet another dragon. if i am confirmed, i would not
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be able to take on this new responsibility if it were not for the support of my very large family. my husband of 33 years alan macfarland and our five children and our five grandchildren. if i am confirmed i would also not presume to take on the responsibility without the support of embassy singapore. it's home to some 19 government agencies. and especially to the extraordinarily talented and dedicated foreign service officers who serve there. the men and women of embassy singapore are the very best of the best and i would consider it an honor if you allow me to serve with them. why singapore? three reasons. first, our economic relationship is robust. we have a bilateral trade agreement since 2004 and it's the first such agreement we've had in asia. the u.s. has a healthy trade
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surplus of nearly $20 billion in goods and services. u.s. businesses invest over $180 billion in singapore, twice as much as we invest in china, five times as much as we invest in india. more than 30,000 americans live there. second we have a close security relationship. when america closed our bases in the philippines in 1990, singapore stepped up. today we have po -- one of the navy's newest combat ships is currently in singapore harbor and my daughter is one of the
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sailors that took it through its sea trials into the commissioning of the fleet. and we have a lot in common. we're both melting pot nations where people of different races and religions and cultures have come together. but even so, we urge them to go further in their human rights agenda. we urge them to continue in their efforts to curb human traff trafficking. and we urge them to expand their political freedoms, freedom of speech, assembly and a free press. and senator carden i listened to your remarks and i agree with them and i know the power of the bully pulpit. on march 30th, 1981, ronald reagan spoke to the aflcio here in washington and in that speech he added a couple of sentences talking to the people in the poland.
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there were polish dock workers trying to organize, trying to strike under their leader. president reagan made a few comments, made a few sentences and nobody remembered them because within a few minutes he was shot and narrowly survived an assassination attempt. but the polish people heard him. and years later when the iron curtain came down and the polish people were free, the first president of poland said that what kept him going and what kept them going in their darkest moments of taking on the communist empire was the words of president reagan and others, the encourage he gave them to keep going to demand their rights. so i understand the power of what you're saying and i would hope that were i confirmed i would be able to speak out and use the bully pulpit in the same kind of way. thank you. so if the senate does confirm my nomination, i see my job as the steward of all aspects of that close relationship with singapore. it's a security relationship
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because they stand at the entrance to the south china sea. it's an economic relationship because it's gateway between east and west. i would do so as the chief proponent of american values. i look forward to answering your questions today. and if i am confirmed as ambassador to singapore, i would look forward to working with all the members of this committee as well as in the administration to advance our interests. >> thank you. without objection, the two letters you referred to will be entered into the record. i'm personal struck by the deep sense of duty that all of you have, your desire to serve our country and look forward to your confirmation. i'm going to defer my questions and save that time for interjections down the road. with that, i turn to senator carden. >> well, thank you, mr. chairman. i want to join you. each of you have an impressive background and your testimonies here today have been very much
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in keeping with the impressive backgrounds that you have. eisenberg, i want to first thank you for your testimony. when we think we have tough days here, i'm going to recall your eyewitness testimony about 9/11 and recognize exactly why we're fighting so hard for the security of our country. so thank you for sharing that. that was inspirational to all of us. >> thank you, senator carden. >> ms. macfarland i thank you for your response in regard to american values and reminding us of some of the great moments in american history where our leaders have stood up to oppression and stood up to countries that have proposed policies that are contrary to universal values. and you're right, singapore is a small country. it is an important country. it's one of the economic powers. it is the gate way to the china
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seas, which is very important for national security. it is a democratic country, but it's a country that does not protect the human rights of its citizens against discrimination. it's a country that doesn't do well in freedom of the press. and it's a country that where america's spokesperson, our ambassador can further the hopes of people of singapore who want to see their country protect these rights. i thank you for the statement you made. i'm satisfied by your response and just want to let you know that you have support on both sides of the aisle to reinforce american values in singapore and elsewhere in the region in which you are going to be operating, there are countries that problematic when it comes to basic values. you're going to be operating in an area that your mission there working with other u.s. missions
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can very much further u.s. values. i will be checking in with you and all of the ambassadors about how we're proceeding on promoting american values, what specifically you have done in regards to your speeches and in regards to the people that you meet with and regards to the priorities that you supervise on the people that are there to advance american values. i look forward to that. you have a very impressive background. i'm going to be asking you some questions for the record, but i want to give you a chance here to respond to one of the statements you made. and it was made in 2013. this is before russia invaded the crukraine, certainly before they interfered in our elections. you said that mr. putin is one that really deserves a nobel peace prize. i hope your views aren't the same today, but i wanted to give you a chance to respond to that. >> thank you, first of all, for
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the very kind words and thank you also for the chance to set this record straight and put that into context. i regret that it was a little tongue in cheek. but at the time president obama had laid a red line down on syria's use of chemical weapons against its civilian population and was either unable or unwilling to carry out that red line. when secretary kerry said if syria were to give up its chemical weapons -- russia stepped up and said they would like to broke their deal. they agreed that russia would take the lead to dismantle syria's chemical weapons program. we now flash forward to today. they're were unwilling to do it or unable to do it. putin deserves no prize for that.
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so i certainly feel that, as you pointed out, the invasion of ukraine and the other things the russians have done perhaps with president putin's direction, i have a very different view today. >> i want to pivot to russia and the problems that we're going to have. clearly ukraine is continuously under attack by russia. we know that there's a continued presence in georgia and moldova. what can nato do working with those countries in order to shore up their capacities to deal with the aggression of russia? >> it is one of nato's prime focuses, the aggression of russia in ukraine of course, georgia as well. i would say, first of all, the european reassurance initiative is an effort to strengthen the
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areas that are most vulnerable where we have four battle groups now and one in each of the baltic states plus poland. and the united states is leading in the one in poland. and canada is leading as well. u.k. is leading as well. and romania in the other three. so i think we are beefing up defenses for an aggressive russia. and secondly, i am pleased that the administration has sent c t curt volker as a special envoy because i think the attention to the russia aggression in the ukraine is so important. as nato has said, there's not going to be business as usual
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with russia as long as they violate the agreement they made in minsk. >> that includes a nato like commitment to unify on the misinformation attacks that russia is doing in europe and their use of the internet. so we're trying to give you additional tools working with our nato partners to share information and best practices against the aggression of russia. >> i think that congress is doing the right thing to put those sanctions in place. i know there are some disagreements on some of the language and everyone is working to make sure that it doesn't have unintended consequences. i think it's very important and that is also an initiative that was made in the may 25th meeting of the heads of state of nato,
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that there would be more of a focus on this hybrid warfare use of russian cyber warfare to interfere with several democracy within our alliance. and that is a focus of nato and i think your bill and the inclusion will give us more strength. >> we'll use your endorsement in the house to try to get it passed. thank you, senator. >> i think it will happen very soon. senator young. >> thank you, chairman. i want to thank all our nominees. we have from my perspective a very competent, qualified panel of distinguished individuals who i think will serve this country well. i enjoyed our visit, would like to continue a conversation we began in the office about the inf treaty.
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in july 2014, three years ago, our department of state issued a report that said the following. the united states has determined that the russian federation is in violation of its obligations under the intermediate range nuclear forces treaty not to possess, produce or fight test a ground launch cruise missile with a range of 550 kilometers or to possess launchers of these missiles. again certifying that russia, quote, continued to be in violation of its obligations under the treaty. while russia has been developing and testing the missile in question for years, on march 8 of this year general selva testified that russia deliberately deployed it in order to pose a threat to nato and to facilities within the
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nato area of responsibility. and so my question to you is this. given this threat to our troops in europe and our nato allies, as a nominee to serve as our ambassador to nato, do you believe we should take tangible and urgent steps to ensure russia doesn't gain military advantage based upon this treaty, should we compel russia to comply with the treaty? >> absolutely. we should reinforce our efforts to get russia to comply with the treaty. and it is the position of the american defense department, state department that russia is in violation. we are consulting with our allies. there are many views about what should be done to continue to encourage and push the russians to meet this agreement. i will say, senator young, that we also have beefing up defenses
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and we have ballistic missile defense capabilities that are within the treaty that we have signed inf. well, we didn't, but the treaty we are complying with it. and our efforts to build up our missile defense in several countries in the alliance also are a signal to russia that we are serious about this treaty. >> i'm encouraged to hear that the pressure campaign will ratchet up, it will continue and no doubt evolve. i'll look forward to continuing to working with you, assuming you are confirmed, which i believe you will be. i would note -- this is a good segue, the latter part of your response to my question. the inf is a two-part treaty. it's the united states, it's russia, but russia is not complying. so it's become a one-sided
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treaty which defeats the whole idea of a treaty in a sense. and so meanwhile, according to the commander of the pacific command in april, over 90% of land based missile forces in china's arsenal fall within this range that is prohibited under the inf treaty. china, not a party to this treaty, but it does -- you know, the point here is that the world has changed since the inf treaty was signed in '87. it begs the question if russia fails to return to compliance with the treaty, without delay do you believe we should withdraw from the treaty? >> that is something that has to be from the nato standpoint a consensus. and some of our allies are concerned that a withdrawal would make russia more aggressive. i think we have to consult.
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i know the state department and the defense department are looking at what are our best efforts to apply what leverage we have for russia to comply. and i think we have to look at all the factors before that decision is made. >> that's a fair answer. it's a complicated question. >> it's hard. >> we'll have to work through this. i hope you'll keep the committee informed as these assessments continue. >> of course. it will be, i'm sure, on everyone's mind. thank you. >> ms. craft, congratulations to you. i have little doubt you'll serve with distinction in this new role. i'm going to perform a test since you did invoke the kentucky/indiana rivalry. i see coach behind you for who i have great respect. consider this a diplomatic test.
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i'm going to play a very brief audio clip. this audio clip is from december 10, 2011. i'd just like to get your response. [ inaudible ] >> can you hear that? >> two-point lead. no timeouts for indiana. [ laughter ]. >> yes! yes! >> you can respond in writing if you prefer. i suspect i'll be hearing from thousands of kentucky residents as well. i have nothing else, mr. chairman. thank you for indulging me. >> thank you, senator. >> thank you. >> i believe that's a first.
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senator menendez. >> that may be a first. >> mr. chairman, i have a procedural comment and that is that the breadth and scope of the nominees and the countries and institutions for which they have been nominated makes it impossible in five minutes to pursue the issues i certainly want to. i don't know how others feel. to the extent that there is an opportunity for a second run, i would urge you. if not, i'm going to be looking for very substantive answers to questions from the record to move forward with the nominee. >> i would be glad to accommodate both. >> thank you. congratulations to all of you. two quick questions, do you believe nato is obsolete? and secondly, do we have an unequivocal commitment to article v in your view? >> absolutely. >> which one is absolute?
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>> the commitment to article v. first of all, nato is not obsolete. and i think the president has acknowledged that, that he after meeting with many of the defense including general mattis's appointment to the department of defense with rex tillerson, the secretary of state and with secretary general stoltenburg, i think the president realized immediately that it is an important and successful alliance. he has made the commitment, of course, to america's support of article v and so has the vice president, the secretary of defense and the secretary of -- >> your role in reasserting that will be very important and i appreciate your service. >> absolutely. >> ms. macfarland, judgment in a united states ambassador is incredibly important. so i know that senator carden lightly touched with you your
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suggestion at one point that putin is the one who really deserves the nobel peace prize. but you know i look at a regime that actually bombs >> -- didn't have the ability or actually i believe had the complicity to allow the syrians to go ahead and continue with their chemical weapons. i look at some of your other comments that have been made in the past on islam, terrorism, the people of the middle east, look, they're arabs they are not going to say something to your face they know is going to upset you. on waterboarding, even if torture is probably worth doing. -- what was this president doing? well, he was playing a lot of golf this summer, sounds very familiar to what's going on this summer. but he clearly was not attending to the defense of the united states. and i could go on and on. when you are going to, if confirmed, going to a country
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which is critically important in the south china sea, how we deal with that issue, who has questions on human trafficking, who has questions -- who also has a significant population that is part of our challenge in the world, can you tell me that your judgment is better than the comments that you've made in the past? >> thank you very much for that question, senator menendez. i think it's important for me, anyway, to think of this as a different kind of position. in the past when i've been on media commentator it was to draw certain points and, perhaps, points drawn very sharply. as an ambassador, if i'm confirmed, it is a different mission, to take direction from the secretary of state and the president and what their positions are, the united states government positions, i would feel that that's the image i
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want to project. um, it's -- as far as representing american values and judgment and the whole role of an ambassador and promoting american interests and the american way of life and america's core values, those i would promote absolutely. you know, america's a -- is a big tent. we have a big roof and i would welcome all under my roof. >> a united states ambassador must represent that entirely. >> absolutely. >> let me ask you, if you were to be confirmed, how would you work to ensure singapore and the united states work productly to address tensions and seek common interests in the south china sea particularly at a time they continue to think about its balance of interest between china and the united states? >> it's a topic i've actually discussed with the singapore foreign minister when he was in washington. the greater topic of, you know,
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not only for security relationships but the south china sea and what does it represent? singapore has said any of these contested islands, international law should prevail and also said in a neighborhood they have to recognize the interests of all of the countries. the fact they have allowed us, in fact, embraced us to have rotational deployment of our aircraft, military vessels in their various naval bases is an indication they want to work with us. -- so, it's a security relationship i would, if i am confirmed, would want to not only endorse as it is now but encourage to continue. >> my question maybe artfully phrased is that how will you tilt, help tilt that balancing that they're doing between china and the united states in our favor? >> the singaporen government,
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because we have a lot of the shared values, not all vared values but the shared values of a democracy and a rule of law they have indicated, in may way ways, they value our relationship and don't want us to leave. one of the things i think so important and why i was interested in singapore for myself as somebody who spent a lot of time studying asia, i look not only at singapore but the region as critical to american national security. singapore and others, if they conclude we are not interested being an inddo-asia pacific power -- -- often china is encouraging them, a lot of the importance of the mission i would have is not just the bilateral relationship but, also, encouraging them to believe we're there, we take this region seriously. the fact singapore is going to be the chairman in 2018 of
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asean, they want to take it the direction of cybertechnology, cyberthreats, cyberdefense, something we could encourage with them. they have said looking for a cyber partner, they look to the united states not others. so, i think there are opportunities there to increase that security relationship with them and i would hope that that would be one of my primary missions not only the economic interests we have in singapore but the strategic interests. you know, it is the gateway to the south china sea which is a military trade route as well as -- economic trade route but also a security route. >> mr. chairman, i don't want my fellow new jerseyans to think i'm ignoring them. since my time is expired, if you have a second round, i have a series of questions. >> absolutely. senator rubio. >> thank you. president trump intends to conduct negotiations to modernize nafta. what do you see as your role in that modernization negotiation?
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>> thank you for your question, senator rubio. 23 years ago when it was signed there were so many aspects of the economy not yet conceptionalized. not being confirmed i have not had a role in writing the policies. however, if confirmed i'm looking forward to working closely -- -- to promote the priorities for the nafta negotiations. >> mr. johnson, as you know, as i shared with you yesterday, because of my life-long being a fan of the miami dolphins support your nomination due to your relationship with the new york jets is painful but i will do it for the good of the country. i think you would agree we would be well served if a certain thomas brady would be nominated ambassador of brazil. [ laughter ] perhaps that could be arranged before september of this year.
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[ laughter ] >> i'm glad we got that out. >> i don't know why people are laughing. i'm very serious about that! [ laughter ] anyway, i will ask and i see senator markey is not here to object or senator shaheen. i think we can get this done. on the.s.-uk relationship -- -- what do you see as most important issue today in our bilateral relationship? >> well, if i look at that relationship from a macro standpoint it is preserving and protecting an enhancing that relationship which has been very valuable to the u.s. for a long time. going back to world war ii but actually going back it was coined in world war ii. by winston churchill but it was a relationship that's really going back even further than that. it's one based on trust and
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working together through thick and thin, for many, many decades. the security relationship is fundamental to that and that's based on trust and competence and sharing information and gathering information, being very innovative to the -- to the task at hand which keeps changing. the world is getting more complicated with cyber and various types of terrorism that are occurring now. so, it's challenging us to be innovative and creative and working together even stronger. so, this will continue to be an important relationship. very important. >> sir -- we've known each other a while. above all else you can confirm unlike new york and new jersey there is not snow in florida in december and january, just a plug. i will say this, i want to ask this you not pointed out italy has the eighth largest economy
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in the world. it is basically the equivalent of the russian economy which receives an extraordinary of attention but a testament to their capability. i would ask if you are prepared to commit our italian partners to increase their defense spending part of their obligation to the -- our treaty alliance through nato. they certainly have the capability to do it and i think among friends and allies that has been stressed by lots of administrations. you go back in the record you will see multiple presidents have made the same request and i think for -- we don't mean in this adversarial way to them but two trillion dollars is a significant economy with the capability to contribute to our mutual defense. so i would ask for your commitment we would continue further what not just this administration's position but what they agreed to do and multiple administrations before us have asked of our partners,
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as well. >> well, of course, my answer to that is i will continue to strive to have italy take up a [ inaudible ] portion of the expense for defense but i would like to note that, as we speak, italy is defending the mediterranean. it is now experiencing probably the most dramatic immigration and refugee problem in europe. they had 180,000 depart from libya last year with a significant amount of casualties. and are incurring great and unusual expense. that number is being exceeded this year and will probably take in over 200,000 and are retaining within italy a very humane way monitoring trafficking with our help and support almost 90% of that immigration and refugee problem. while, at the same time, they
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maintain 30,000 u.s. troops on five distinct military bases. they have the second largest commitment in both iraq and afghanistan of troops on the ground. so, in many ways, their efforts and what they've achieved is quite meaningful. they have committed, as recently as the g-7 and i think afterwards at a meeting between the prime minister and the president here that they would continue to honor their agreement to move to the nato requirement of 2% by 2024. and they have moved in that direction meaningfully in the last year. >> thank you, sir. senator kane? >> thank you, mr. chairman. congratulations to each of the witnesses, very important relationships. i want to start with miss craft quickly. i'll be with great kientuckkent tomorrow. tomorrow and over the weekend
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there is an amazing remote the remote access medical clinic where people who don't have health insurance gather from all over the southeast of the united states to get free treatment from volunteer doctors and nurses and it is an amazingly uplifting event because of the hundreds of volunteers, many from kentucky and virginia and elsewhere and it's an amazingly heart-breaking event. every time i go and i've been going since 2002 to work the registration table it reminds me of when i was a missionary in honduras and that was the way that health care was done in that country, which is the second poorest country in the americas. to see it in my own commonwealth is heart-breaking but the valor of those who participate will be an really impressive thing and i'm looking forward to being with them tomorrow. kay bailey, congratulations, i'm so excited you are the nominee and i'll be real blunt. my oldest was deployed with the european reinsurance initiative
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with russia on the border last year. when he was there doing his exercise in lithuania, others, russia was engaged in cybertalking our election and an amazing effort in montenegro and plan b to assassinate the prime minister, assassinate opposition leaders, all to try to keep montenegro out of nato. russia now engaged in activities to destabilize nato exercises happening there. and watching that going on and, frankly, i was very, very worried in the early days of this administration to hear the president basically suggest russia wasn't doing anything wrong but, also, to say that nato was obsolete when the entire 1200 members of my son's battalion were deployed there in harm's way doing work i thought was important. your nomination sends a signal that the nato relationship is an important one. i don't think the administration would have asked somebody of
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your qualification if they didn't mean to send a signal that whatever the earlier statements or thoughts about nato, there's now a commitment and as you shared with me yesterday, if you wondered whether there was a commitment to the seriousness of the relationship, you wouldn't have accepted the nomination. and so, i'm very, very happy to see you before this committee. and i'm very anxious to get you confirmed as quickly as we can because i think this is krin bleed important. to miss mcfar lan, senator menendez asked questions about statements and it is a bit of a burden being a commenter. you've commented sharply and your statements are mostly self-explan tory but one i was curious about. press around your earlier position on the national security council one thing often mentioned in accounts i was curious about because it never was a quote from you. i don't even know if it was accurate, that you were in favor of the brexit vote, approved and were happy about its outcome.
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i was curious if this was accurate reporting and given we have a uk ambassador nominee -- -- i was curious, if that was true, what did you think was positive about that vote? >> i don't specifically remember saying it in those terms but, at the time, um, i said that it's, you know, when -- the important thing for the british people to decide what they want to do. i don't think it's for anybody to tell them what to do and was encouraged by the fact the british people in very large percentage and numbers were taking it on their own authority to make a decision. >> so, you didn't have a personal opinion yourself about whether the removal of the uk from the european union was a good thing or bad thing. >> i do remember making a statement that, um, and again, i don't want to -- i know this is an important issue and don't want to speak off the top of my head but said something along the lines if the british choose to do that on their own, that
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might present opportunities for them in bilateral trade agreements with the united states or other relationships. >> i don't want to catch you flat-footed on this, either, because i may ask that in writing. >> sure. >> with a reference and have you follow up on that. thank you, mr. chair. >> thank you. senator paul? >> congratulations to all of you for your nomination and as a proud father of two kentucky wildcats particular congratulations to my fellow kentuckyian. sometimes when we put things forward we don't get the whole truth. we heard a bit from the senator of indiana about a particular game in 2011 -- [ laughter ] -- but i think there was a rematch later in the nc ncaa finals. do you remember who won the rematch? >> of course. the kentucky wildcats. >> all right. do you remember the national champions that year? kentucky wildcats. absolutely. i think we'll set the record straight there. i have more of a serious sort of point and maybe we'll see if we get a response.
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i think it's important we remember the state department's not the pentagon. we have a pentagon, the mightiest military in the world and most of you, maybe excluding nato to a certain extent but most of your job is with the state department, not the pentagon. there is a different role. to have the mightiest defense and wipe out any enemy to strike us, et cetera. your job is one of friendship, trade going to friendly countries. it is important that your role in the world as you are out there mixing with other ambassadors, your role to foster peace. i think that's important. miss mcfarland i think was involved with secretary weinberg ger in the weinberger doctrine she knows i'm aware of. part of that we only go to war under certain circumstances not
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gleeful for war but restrict and restrain only going to war. one of the point of the doctrine to go to war in last resort. one, we go under vital national interests. i think sometimes we get sloppy with that one saying everything is our vital national interest and really a conclusion on both sides before we go. my hope is always there is a sufficient voice for war being the last resort. i'm not saying we never go but the state department is supposed to be part of that to a certain extent at nato, also, about preparedness but still the goal of nato is defense, not offense. i just hope all of you will remember that and realize that, you know, really part of your role is to try to preserve peace and keep peace and if you'd like to since i named you miss mcfarland, you welcome to respond about the doctrine, your role or your thoughts about your role in the world or our role in
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the world. >> thank you very much, senator paul. you and i have had this conversation many times about the doctrine. i was privileged to be at the pentagon in the reagan administration and helped craft the speech that he delivered that was the weinberger doctrine. there were several points to it, guidelines when the united states should consider going to war, using combat forces overseas. one of the considerations was we would do so to protect our vital national interests. we would do so with a clear idea of what was required that would also have the full support of the american people. and finally, that our objective would be to win and prevail. so, i know that that's something that has guided your own thinking in national security issues and i thank you for the opportunity to discuss it, senator. >> thank you. senator? >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you to all of the nominees for your willingness to serve
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and for the opportunity to be with you here today. senator hutchison, thanks for the opportunity for a great conversation yesterday about the importance of nato and the role which you've been nominated for. let me just ask again here in this setting how do you intend to convince our nato allies to stay the course with us in afghanistan given how much they've already sacrificed, given how uncertain the path is ahead. i'd be interested in how you think together we will make that argument to our vital nato allies? >> yes. thank you very much. thank you for meeting with me. um, senator, afghanistan is hard. it's hard for america and it is very hard for all of our allies. but, we know that al qaeda is rising up in afghanistan. we know that that is a common thread, it's a common threat to all of us. and our allies have never
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flagged when we have asked for certain numbers of increased help or capacity. they've stepped up. they have stepped up for 15 years in afghanistan. our allies have been with us side by side. they are stepping up now in iraq because we are re-grouping and doing more in iraq. these are very tough duties but they're there. and to say what are you going to do to keep them? um, i think they've been there. i think they have been with us. and it is our common threat. >> i agree. >> al qaeda is our common threat. is sis is our common threat. so, i will appreciate them and continue to encourage all of us to stay firm. >> thank you. two more questions if i might. first to you, senator.
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how would you also help shape nato's cyber strategy? we've seen cyber attacks in the past on now our nato ally estonia, many of us are concerned about the cyber actions by russia in american domestic matters as well as knows involving key allies. does an attack trigger article 5? if so, how do we respond and strengthen this? i have one more question after that. >> i think we have to see what kind of attack we would be addressing before we talk whether it would invoke article 5. however, the leaders, the leaders' meeting in may, as well always the previous defense meetings of nato, have made it more of a focus and more of a awareness of the cyber attacks of russia and the interference
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with many processes and many of our allied countries and i think cyber is going to continue to be more of an emphasis of nato as we go forward but i think the leaders have already staked out that as a new focus. >> thank you, senator. if i might, ms. mcfarland. thank you for your service and willingness to step up to this role. i had the chance, the honor, to travel with senator mccain to singapore along with senator boraaso to the regional security conference and was struck how broadly our regional allies and partners express concern at withdrawal from tppp. how will the trump administration, you if confirmed as ambassador, undertake economic statecraft and given some grave concerns i think about security issues in the
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philippines and elsewhere in the region where isis is make something advances, how will you work with counterpartss to confront the growing threat of terrorism in the region? >> thank you very much for that question and particularly your interest in asia, southeast asia. first of all, we have a bilateral trade agreement with singapore, as you know. it's the first one we've had with any asian nation and very successful for the two of us. when the administration pulled out of the tppp, i had the opportunity to meet with the singapore foreign minister, not knowing i was eventually going to be sitting before you hoping to be confirmed to be the ambassador to singapore. and he said, you know, we understand. we have a strong and robust relationship we want to continue. what the administration has said is that the u.s.-singapore free trade agreement is one would be a foundation, it would be something they would use as a template to have bilateral
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economic relations with other countries. when president trump withdrew from tpp, he said he felt the best interests of the united states would be served by bilateral trade agreements. i don't know -- i've been out of the administration two months and not sure where the shish yous go but that would be the first. the second one is the security relationship. one of the reasons that i was interested in this position and when it was offered to me was excited about it, is because i, too, had heard in my position as deputy national security adviser, i've heard from a number of counterparts from other countries and they made the same point you are making, there was concern the united states was lessening its commitment to the region, not as concerned what was happening in the south china sea. they saw as an increasingly aggressive china, building a blue water navy and kind of muscling across the asia-pacific region. so one of the things i would
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hope to do with singapore and then work with the other ambassadors if they're confirmed if we're all confirmed, the other ambassadors in the southeast asian region, to put this at the forefront. vice president trump went to indonesia and met with the president. trump will make a trip to the far east in a similar capacity and so i think part of it is just to show our interests, our commitment then to keep -- let them know we're not a waning power, the united states is not a declining power, this is not an inevitable thing that will happen. we are just as committed to the region as ever have been and continue to be even more committed to the region and we are proud it is not in decline. america's greatest days are ahead of it and we hope they will be with us. >> i hope to have the opportunity to work with each of you and the countries you've been nominated to advance that shared and important goal to
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continue to strengthen our alliances and role in the world and to work in a bipartisan way and mr. chairman you've played a critical role on this committee advancing that vision. thank you and to your families thank you for supporting your public service. mr. chairman? >> thank you. senator? >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. thank you very much for being here. congratulations on your nomination. >> thank you. >> the thing about canada, second largest trading partner of the united states, wyoming's second largest export market, 2016, this two-way cross-border goods traded i think $1.7 billion. -- we work closely together. canada the largest supplier of u.s. energy. can you talk a bit as ambassador how you promote american exports and expand the trade relationship between our two countries? >> thank you for your question,
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senator. if confirmed i'm going to work very closely with ambassador and secretary of commerce ross to promote the priorities of the trump administration agenda with nafta and also with the different areas of soft wood pim ber -- -- other industries benefit the american prosperity and people, both small businesses and large businesses. >> the same follow-up with you, mr. johnson. the united states-united kingdom, incredibly successful relationship. can you talk a bit about as the united kingdom is leaving the european union, you know, what opportunities exist, what challenges exist, great trade and investment between the two countries. >> thank you very much for that question, senator. and if confirmed, brexit will create, i'll be working on
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brexit, trying to help congress, the president, secretary tillerson figure out what opportunities and challenges that we can have access to. you're right, the -- exactly, the relationship has been robust. it's not as big as canada. i think it's about $200 million in trades and services. there are million jobs on either side of the atlantic that rely on that relationship. and our job is to encourage, as i said in my opening testimony, the overall relationship with the uk has to be enhanced. we want to enhance it and leave it better than we found it and a big part of that is trade. i don't know if that's a direct answer. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> ms. mcfarland i want to talk about kind of the area of the world that you have been nominated to serve. you know, i was in singapore
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last month with john mccain who you mentioned and how he encouraged you for your service and we have been -- went there for an international defense conference, security conference following the time that we went to vietnam. so, we'd just been there meeting with leaders there. but it has been a strong partner of the united states in trade, as well as security. it's also a major focal point this that whole part of the world. can you talk a little bit how important u.s. presence in that region, specifically singapore, as ambassador how you plan to further strengthen the cooperation between the two. >> thank you for your question and your interest in that part of the world. i think you and i agree it is going to be an extremely important part of america's future, as well. a lot of economic estimates, 60, even 80% of the world's economic
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growth next decade will come from that region. the united states has 4200 american companies headquarters in singapore up from about 3700 about two years ago. and singapore acts as the hub of a lot of the economic interests throughout the region. so, in other words, if there's an american company headquartered there, it will do business in singapore but also may do business in other nations in southeast asia, malaysia, indonesia, etc. given that trend, i think it is an important place for the united states to be to advance commercial interests, as good as they are no could be a lot better. is an area of the world we don't want to, foresake or be edged out of that area of the world increases in its economic relationship. as far as the other parts -- also remains a hub for security relations. um, you know, if you look at a map, the strait of malaca is the
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gateway all trade from europe, the middle east, energy trade has to go past singapore to all of asia. american trade from the west coast goes the opposite direction through there. important to have an economic presence but security presence. singapore understands its responsibility. only 5.5 million people and land mass about four times the size of washington or for a new yorker like me, like new york city without staten island. it's a small place but poses big particularly in a security relationship. singapore spends close to 4% of gmp on defense and out of every -- of its entire national budget is spent a number of things but one out of every three or four dollars is spent on defense. a lot of military equipment they buy is american military equipment, as you know,
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singapore buys planes from your part of the world and trains in wyoming. singapore military, because it is a small area, they have bases elsewhere, they have training facilities in the united states. and in other parts of the world that they then use that equipment as they come home to singapo singapore. i think those things, the fact it may be small, have a small population but it's a hub for so many things and it's an important part of the world that we need to be in and, particularly, as you mentioned, as the other countries look and wonder about our commitment because those are the swing states. if we somehow are not present economically or not present in a security sense, that's a part of the world that will make its own separate deal and it is a part of the deal we may not be heavily involved in for hundreds of years. thank you. >> congratulations to each and every one of you. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you, mr. chairman. very much.
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i've been fond of senator rubio's earlier comments and i just want to say that i don't think that's going to be possible because co-owner robert kraft is a very close friend of donald trump so i don't think there is any chance of brady leaving the country until he quin wins at least two or three more championships. at that point, whatever he wants. that's our approach. you understand that, mr. johnson, very much, notwithstanding the competitive advantage the jets would receive with that. >> i'm open to it. [ laughter ] >> let me ask you, ms. mcfarland, rigorous enforcement of sanctions on north korea is essential to get north korea to the table for serious negotiations about denuclearization of the peninsula. singapore has an important role in that effort. the united nations panel of experts set up to monitor
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compliance with international sanctions assessed north korea continues to evade sanctions through the use of front companies including in singapore. that panel's report linked a company from singapore to a north korean firm involved in the sale of conventional arms. the company was identified as a front run by north korean intelligence agencies that sell equipment in violation of u.n. sanctions. more recently research organization nk news publiced a comprehensive report indicating a singapore based company -- -- is involved in importing luxury goods to north korea in defiance of u.n. security council sanctions. -- ensure north korea is not using its environment to evade sanctions. if you are confirmed, would you ensure that the strongest
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possible message is sentence from the united states to the singapore government we expect full compliance with the north korean sanctions? >> absolutely. as president trump has said, north korea's nuclear proliferation program is one of the most serious and immediate crisis we face and whether the financial technology issues, the fidz fin-tech or the -- -- shipment points that may be going to north korea of any type it's important not only we have these international agreements but that we enforce them. so, you have my complete confidence if confirmed i will pr pursue that, thank you. >> it's hard to get the attention of north korea is china is not imposing sanctions, a 37% increase in raid between china north korea the last year and the same true for some other countries. we have to make sure the pressure is intensified.
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also that north korea does come to the bargaining table. mr. johnson, the issue of northern ireland is very important to tens of millions of irish in the united states. following his nomination by president clinton, senator george mitchell chaired the all-party negotiations that ultimately produced the good friday agreement of 1998. it ended years of bloodshed but a crisis in northern ireland prevented the formation of a government there since january. when martin mcginness resigned as deputy minister two months before he died. since january sinn fein and the other party have been in talks to form another government. the june election in the uk resulted in prime minister may's conservative party forming a co a ligs with --
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-- although its founder, ian paisley, ultimately agreed to a government in which he served as first minister and mcginness served as deputy first minister, the prime minister's -- may's coalition was. ed with the dup and particularly troubling because the british government is the guarantor of the good friday agreement and is responsible for mediating the political crisis in belfast. so, all of these factors raise serious concerns, especially since the northern irish voted overwhelmingly against brexit. now, even as there is a goal set by prime minister may she wants a hard brexit, which causes real problems potentially in northern ireland. could you talk a bit about that issue and how you would
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represent the united states? >> senator, i thank you for that very complicated question. because, it's a -- it reflects the complications of what's happening in northern ireland and its relation to both the u.s. and the uk. the good friday agreements, as you pointed out, that were shepherded by the u.s., uk and irish themselves, led to roughly 19 years so far of peace relative peace and tranquility from a period very turbulent. these are complicated issues, particularly now if inject brexit into the equation as a factor, major factor, you have issues border, you have border issues, trade issues, immigration issues, a lot had been done as you've commented on with supporting jobs along the border to harmonize the relationship and to try to have a better understanding between
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secular beliefs that were the cause of some of the unrest. i pledge to you because i know this is an important issue, that if confirmed i will spend a lot of time trying to do anything i can do to facilitate the establishment of, you know, establishment of understanding and try to pick up on what you did in '98 to establish this and try -- because it's in our best -- the u.s. best interests to have a stable uk, including northern ireland. >> thank you for that. more attention you pay to it i think is the greater the lickly hood the peace will hold. it's the economic integration largely, customs integration issues, security issues that have really helped integrate northern ireland into europe and with ireland itself. so, the more the brexit starts
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to fool with that formula is the more it could lead to a delay in the full integration which i think ultimately is what the people of northern ireland need to finally bring a permanent peace and training kwinquility country. thank you, sir. >> -- thank you to all nominees for your willingness to serve the country, welcome to our families in attendance and appreciate the fact you are willing to serve our country, truly appreciate it. i've had a chance to visit all of you about the work you'll be pursuing in various countries you'll be representing and alliance, of course, so important and critical to the safety, security of europe and the united states and i look forward to working with you in years to come upon confirmation. i serve as chairman of the east asia -- -- we've had a lot of conversations already that even
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senator markey recently brought up about north korea and covered one of the companies i was going to talk about. recent reports as he mentioned found to have been doing business with pyongyang, doing business there and north korea luxury goods store. as ambassador, how do wiwill yo approach that situation, see a report and find out information about a company doing business in violation of a u.n. resolution or u.s. law like we passed last congress dealing with north korea sanctions? how do you approach this or work with the government of singapore or any nation, for that matter, how do you work within asean to spread greater awareness of the need to address sanctions and fully enforce them and how do you deal with that within the trump administration? >> thank you, senator gardner. i do, if confirmed, look forward to a long and fruitful conversation with you as chairman of the east asia
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subcommittee. i think i would start with embassy singapore not only foreign service officers economic officers as well but members of the commerce department, special trade rep and other communities. the first step would be to find out, okay, what's going on? what are these companies? what's their economic tie and what potentially is their mel tarry tie to north corkoe korea. working through the state department as well as people embassy singapore would work with home agencies some 19 including the agriculture has a repetiti reptiv representative. -- they view our support of the united nations and others. so, that's worth something. i think that the ability to go to a friendly country and say
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this is what we have determined, this is what the united nations has determined with regard to a company of yours, how will we work together to stop this? singapore has said, their leaders, the prime ministers and others have said they, too, are concerned about the threat of north korea and as senator markey pointed out, the only way that north korea is ever going to get to the point of potentially giving up its nuclear weapons or changing attitudes they feel pressure. where are they getting pressure? a number of sanctions against north korea through the united nations and other international organizations but there has to be secondary pressure brought to baer, as secretary tillerson said with regard to north korea specifically -- -- not to do business with them
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singapore we hope would work with us in the same goal. >> you mentioned about presence, not present in the region economically or from a security standpoint that creates a challenge for u.s. leadership. we've worked on legislation to create a strategy. what do you think the key points should be to build that presence there overall? >> yes. i think that in the conversations i've had with you, the direction you're going i think is very much in consort with what the administration, secretary tillerson and others have said is their goal in the asia region. one place i think offers an enormous amount of future opportunity is cyber. singapore and the united states have both been named two countries best at and take most seriously the whole issue whether intellectual property
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defense, cyber defense or cyber hacking. he'll be chairman much the association of southeast asian nations in 2018, they have already said they want the cyber issue first and foremost not only for singapore but other countries in the region. singapore's goal to be the first smart nation where they use digital technology, use logo rhythms to help various aspects of society, civil society. i think that represents the future. the world is going in the cyber direction, the internet of things and singapore stated their interest in doing that, we know we have an interest in doing that and both are very vulnerable, we are the most connected countries in the world but that leaves us with great vulnerabilities, as well. so, i would think that's a place to look. not only i would be interested in looking at with singapore but any work that you are doing as you proceed with this legislation you are proposing. >> thank you. thanks to all of you for your service. >> thank you.
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senator murphy? >> thank you very much, mr. chairman and to you all for your willingness to serve the country. senator hutchison, i'm sorry we didn't get to serve together in the senate but am glad the siren of public service has called you once again. i wanted to ask you a question about the role of counter-terrorism within the nato alliance. i think there are still pretty glaring vulnerabilities in europe with respect to their ability to share information about terrorism threats both to europe and to the united states. as if the united states were trying to thwart terrorists' attempts without the fbi with 50 different state law enforcement jurisdictions voluntarily cooperating with each other. is this an issue that should be left to the eu to figure out and to the eu ambassador or is this a proper subject for our nato
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ambassador to engage with countries through that forum to try to improve the ability of european countries to share information perhaps through new mandatory procedures regarding counter-terrorism threats? >> well, thank you. i think that is a very good question. i definitely think it is in nato's purview. and i think the president, president trump, brought that up and nato has now affirmed that cyberterrorism is a threat in many instances. it could be in a communication system, it could be in any kind of a business disruption and it could be in our military communications or military activities. so, i think it is in nato's interests. they have already agreed that it will be one of the focuses and one of the main focuses.
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nato is somewhat like the united states senate or any group that has different threats and different constituencies. some members of nato are more concerned about russian aggression. others are more concerned about terrorism and counterterrorism, depending where they fall geographically. so, i think it is very much a common threat and it should be in the purview of nato. >> i think it probably is in the purview of nato and also in the purview of eu. i think we need to apply as much pressure as possible to clean up these vulnerabilities in part because they are all our vulnerabilities, visa waiver countries in which these threats can land on our shores without any security screen. i thank you for that. >> your point is also very important nato and the eu are also beginning to do more sharing than they have ever done before. >> mr. johnson, i know you have
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a question when i wasn't here earlier. brexit and future of britain's relationship with the eu. but i wanted to talk to you about the conversation around a free trade agreement with britain. there's been talk within this administration of engaging in talks with britain with respect to a free trade agreement. there's great worry, i am in the category of those who worry that if this is placed before a bilateral negotiation with the eu on what we call t-tip, it's going to provide an incentive for other countries to exit europe because they can get first in line for a trade agreement with the united states. do you think that it's appropriate to negotiate a free trade agreement with england, britain, before we have engaged in a trade agreement negotiation with europe as a whole? >> well, thank you for that
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question. thanks for that question, senator. yeah, brexit is going to be a complicated, a complicated series of agenda items going forward and one of them is free trade and how -- and how that's played. i mean, the bilateral trade between the u.s. and that country and what impact that has, positive or negative. and so, i think that has to be factored in. my -- i suspect that we're going to have to wait until this process unfolds a little more so we figure out what the pieces are. and, as ambassador, i would be -- if confirmed, i would be talking to the political and business leaders and opinion leaders in the country to figure out what vulnerabilities and what opportunities there are for american businesses and americans and you point out there's every one of these -- every one of these factors whether it's negotiating a bilateral agreement or even
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looking at, even looking alt cybersecurity like you just were talking about, this is gonna -- everything is impacted by brexit and our ability to kind of protect and project what's in our best interests as this unfolds. >> and i don't expect you to answer the precise question but i would just caution you on this issue. it's worn thing fone thing for t to cheerlead brexit, another to reward them for what would be fodder for groups pushing for other countries to leave the eu, as well. i appreciate you giving more thought to that issue. >> thank you, senator. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> make pg ing of a diplomat th. na senator menendez? >> -- i've been asking this question so it is not personal but continuing effort. ms. mcfarland do you speak
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mandarin -- >> no. my undergraduate degree was chinese studies and i studied chineseintensively those years. -- sadly i didn't have an opportunity to finish. my mandarin is very, very rusty. one of the first things i would do is look forward to trying to see if i could remember back 40 years and try to refresh that. >> okay. do you speak italian? [ speaking foreign language ] >> -- i was remiss on the opening gratified by the introduction of start rubio since my wife and i have not been residents of florida almost a decade but very remiss, i might say not addressing the
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fact 9 of my 16 medie immediatey are sitting hin hi rbehind me a residents of the garden state. >> i'm familiar with that. >> if you would indulge me wife and i just celebrated our 52nd anniversary. if you would permit me -- -- unfortunately my daughter stacey lisle and paul could not be here but three children also voters in the state of new jersey. i would be remiss if i didn't recat rice a bit my origin. thank you for that extra moment. we'll continue to speak more italian so i can speak more than the opening phrase. >> we should have made you ambassador to the holy see,
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based on that. [ laughter ] i do not believe not having a language ability is disqualifying and didn't ask my second question because you all said in your testimony whether or not you've visited the country. unfortunately some of my colleagues in the past have held against democratic nominees whether they did not speak the language or didn't visit the country so i'll continue the record so we'll have equity regardless of the nominee. in that regard -- >> did you ask mr. johnson if he could speak british or english? [ laughter ] >> we've been working with each other on our gaelic. so, let me ask you all a simple yes or no answer do you believe russia sought to interfere in our presidential elections last year? >> yes. >> i don't know the answer to that but i think there's enough investigation and discussion going on so i'd like to reserve judgment for the moment. >> with everything 17
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intelligence agencies, you still don't have a view. >> i think it's likely but i do believe there are investigations going on to cob rate -- >> mr. johnson? >> i haven't studied the evidence on the inside so i can just go by what i read and it looks like, you know, it could have happened, maybe did happen but until i -- really, if i did a complete analysis with all the information i'd be able to give you much better judgment. >> miss kraft? >> thank you. i believe just from reading the material everyone has had the opportunity to read it looks as if, yes. i would have to investigate this further, learn more -- but i do believe, yes. >> senator hutchison? rchl >> i think from what our intelligence community has said and in the newspapers and other media there is a good likelihood, yes. i also think it is important that we know the extent and how it was done and that's what the
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investigations are meant to do. >> the reason i ask the question, it may seem unrelated to your nominations but the fact is the senate passed 98-2 sanctions, very rare these days we get 98-2 votes, on russia for, among other things, ent interfering in our elections. when i heard your answer senator hutchison to senator murphy about cyber attacks and nato, how you describe the different elements of a cyber attack would be, we need to have our ambassadors abroad making clear, unequivocal advocacy in which the countries in which they are assigned to join our multi-lateral sanctions effort, whether it be iran, also part of that legislation or whether it be russia. i'm a little worried, with all of the public knowledge, i'm not saying that they affected the election. the mere fact that they tried to affect the election should be of great concern from the average
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citizen to the president of the united states. and we need our ambassadors to be advocating that point of view as it relates to sanctions, when this finally passes the house and signed by the president. i hope we can count on you to do that. in that regard, mr. eisenberg, in reference to that legislation one of the concerns i have to italy, while they have complied with sanctions it has relatively close relations with russia and has indicated interest in doing more business with iran. as my colleagues have noted, we expect this legislation soon to pass the house. how will you engage with the italians on maintaining economic pressure both on russia and iran? >> if confirmed, senator, i would intend to become more decisively involved in that discussion. but, i would note that italy is
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80% reliant on its energy resources from russia and libya. but, they have continued to maintain very substantial support on the sanctions. and i have no reason to expect that i would not continue to encourage and try and help them to live up to that. >> i appreciate their energy challenge and you're right. but, as a nato ally and dependent upon the united states as a major element of that, we need them, as well as other european countries some of you will be nominated to, i don't have doubt about great britain but nonetheless to be engaged making sure that because the european union by unanimity one country breaking away breaks sanction also of the regime. if our multi-lateral regime is broken we have a real challenge returning to the international order.
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i applaud that commitment to your work. if i may take one last moment mr. chairman to mr. johnson, i appreciate the answer on peace and justice, something we spoke about when you the other problem with great britain right now is it's a critical ally for us, critical to the national security and interest of the united states. we had some incidents in the area, the ariana grande concert, we had some links with the mayor of london. will you work as our ambassador to assure the united kingdom that our commitment to security and our confidentiality in terms of the sharing of intelligence is going to be preserved in. >> thank you, senator, i certainly will. >> i have questions for the
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senator that i will submit to the record. >> it i want to follow up on senator menendez' point, because your response to russia's interference in our elections, i fully appreciate that you haven't studied up on the issue, but i feel and this congress feels very strongly that russia presents an extreme danger to america, that's why we're going to enact some stronger sanctions, taking away some of the discretion of the president regarding sanctions with russia. the countries that we have ambassadors, that's the only one of the four that currently does business with russia and it's very possible they're going to be impacted by the sanctions. we have to work very closely with our european partners for
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sanctions to work against russia. europe is more vulnerable than we are to the activities that russia is doing. so it's in their interest that we have strong unity between the united states and europe in enforcing sanctions against russia. but there will be business interests and perhaps some governmental interests in italy regarding some aspects of this, that at least can't we continue to do this, and that weakens the whole fiber, the whole fabric of our sanctions regime. and we're going to have to have a united strong position against russia that if they continue to interfere in our countries, they're going to pay a heavy economic price. are you prepared to be that person? >> if confirmed, i think i can deliver that message and execute that message. >> okay, thank you. i want to thank you all for your
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willingness to serve. i do want to reiterate, especially in italy, uk and nato. russia will do everything it can to destabilize and to pose a threat to democracy and i think it is rare that the congress of the united states senate has acted in the way that it has. regardless of what people may or may not think happened during the election, and i do think they did attempt to interfere, there's no question their goal is to destabilize democracies and i know that each of you will be strong advocates for that not occurring. i want to say in particular to italy, i know you won't be the ambassador to the vatican, but on my recent visit there, i was struck by the campaign that the
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vatican used to hold up the -- the fact that the pope and others seemed to be open to that. so i think, you know, there's a lot of work that we have to do there. and that mostly is in relation to what's happening in syria. and then finally i would just say this, in addition to passing a bill 98-2, this committee unanimously and the senate has adopted a major effort to end modern slavery around the world, and all the countries that you're going to, slavery interests and in our own country, i know you will have questions about trafficking and everything, but we do hope that you will be advocates on that human value. the record will remain open until the close of business on friday, we would like to get and a number of you have family issues and you have to get to countries before school starts and that type of thing.
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it's an unusual time in the senate. but one thing that can speed it along, to the extent that you can pay personal attention, and as senator menendez stated, it will help speed things along. thank you all for your desire to serve and the meeting is adjourned.
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u.s. attorney jeff sessions responded to a comment that the president said about him. he said he would have picked someone else to be attorney general if he would have known that sessions would have recused himself from the russia investigation. >> attorney general sessions, this is not really a normal day, the president made very disparaging remarks about you, the deputy attorney general yesterday and how seriously are you considering possibly resigning? >> we in this department of justice will continue every single day to work hard to serve the national interest and we wholeheartedly join in the priorities of president trump. he gave us several directives,
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one is to dismantle trance national criminal organizations. that's what we're announcing today, to dismantle the largest dark website in the world today. and i congratulate our people for that. i have the honor serving as attorney general, it's something that goes beyond any thought i would have ever had for myself, we love this job, we love this department, and i continue to plan to do so as long as that is appropriate. >> attorney general sessions, how do you think you can effectively serve from here on out if you don't have the confidence of the president. >> we're serving right now. the work we're doing today is the kind of work that we intend to continue. just last week, we announced the largest health care takedown ever in the united states. we had all the major law
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enforcement leaders in my office yesterday to talk about our unified efforts to improve our crime fighting with state and local officials. i'm totally confident that we can continue to run this office in an effective way. but i really would like you to focus now on the work of the individuals behind me that have helped put this case together, so that we can celebrate and affirm the work that we have done so that we can learn from it and get even better in the future. >> deputy attorney general rosenstein-- [ inaudible ] is that something that's a valid concern? your view? >> as the attorney general said, we're working here today to advance the priorities of the department of justice and the administration. i was proud to be here yesterday, i'm proud to be here today, i'll be proud to be here
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tomorrow. we're working to advance the interests of the department and the attorney general said, there's a lot of folks that assisted in that investigation, and that's all i'm going to talking about today. >> all right, thank you. >> cspan sat down with white house deputy press secretary sarah huckabee sanders to talk about her role in the trump administration. she's the daughter of former governor mike huckabee. she gave us a taste of what it is like to work in the white house. >> walk us through a typical day here in the white house. >> it starts around 5:00 a.m., i get up and i only have one early riser, so hawk, my 3-year-old, i usually spend some time with him in the morning before i leave and get to the office to try to
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read through and catch up on any news that took place before i went to bed. then we start with staff meetings around 8:15 to look at the news of the day. and from there, every day is a little different than the one before. which is one of the reasons i love what we do, is that no two days are alike and every day presents new challenges and gives us a new way to be part of the administration. >> and you get home when? >> usually anywhere between 7:00 to 10:00 at night. >> and as you take on this job, i mean, sean spicer has made a couple of changes, skype seats among them. how do you approach the job of assistant press secretary? >> i try do that the same way i
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would any other relationship. i grew up in the south so being hospitable was something that was ingrained in me at an early age and something i try to take into my workplace and everything i do there and so i try, even when i disagree, i try to be p diplomatic and gracious about it. sometimes we have to push back but i try to do that in a way that is again polite and hospitable but also strong and not weak. >> you can watch the entire interview on cspan on saturday at 8:00 eastern. and the president will speak aboard the uss "gerald ford." >> i sat in my wagon with my dog and i watched the riot.
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it was right directly across from my paper station, a clothing store, called jack's place. i saw a guy come out of the clothing store with 10 hats on his head, literally in a stack. and carrying bundles of things, of clothes with him. >> the 50th anniversary of the 1967 detroit riots, sunday at noon eastern. american history tv is live from the detroit press newsroom. firsthand accounts of the riots. >> they gave the order, don't shoot, be cool, just let it go. that was the order they gave them. and word got out. word got out that suddenly there's 50,000 people on 12th street just helping themselves to everything. >> the 1967 detroit riots, starting sunday at noon eastern on american history tv on cspan
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3. the senate foreign relations committee held a hearing for the nomination for four candidates for state department positions, the nominees included calista gingrich to be the ambassador to the vatican. committee members questioned her and other candidates on a range of issues, including travel visas and terrorism. this hearing is about an hour.

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