tv Washington Journal Rep. Bobby Scott and Rep. Jason Lewis CSPAN January 17, 2018 11:00am-11:31am EST
military over these unrelated issues and for deadlines that don't even exist this friday, that makes no sense to me. the federal government has many responsibilities. ut its first, foremost primary responsibility is to provide for the common defense and when you see a situation where more men and women in our military are dying in training accidents than they are in combat, it's a serious situation. . to block funding for our military with a friday deadline over unrelated issues makes no sense to me. it's wrong. >> do you have a solid feel where the president stands on hese negotiations? >> you'll be hearing about the federal government face as possible shutdown this coming friday night. members of congress will decide on a short-term package of funds to keep the government working into the middle of next month. house members will debate
tomorrow. the senate may also take up the bill on thursday. follow the congressional debate over the funding of the federal government live with u.s. house coverage here on c-span. the senate on c-span2. watch online at c-span.org or listen on the free c-span radio app. today in the house several bills including reforms at the world bank and a bill expanding trade with africa. they'll be in for leverage work at noon eastern. we'll have live coverage. ahead of that, 11:30, we plan to bring awe news conference with the chair of the house democratic caucus, joe crowley, vice chair linda sanchez on democratic priorities in congress. set at 11:30. we'll have it live when it starts ahead of the house. before that part of this morning's "washington journal." . discussionndtable this morning, we're joined to talk about bipartisan
legislation to reform the criminal justice system. go.ressman scott, days to your thoughts on how it plays out? guest: i think there is a consensus we will not shut it down but what gets in the bill being workedll out. i hope we can fund the government for a year. it is impossible to plan defense on a monthly basis. you need to see the long-term planning. disadvantagetrong with these monthly continued resolutions. www.c-span.org i agree with that -- i agree with that.
we need an actual budget on the fence especially. i think we will get there and will not shut the government down and do something very important i believe were my home state of minutes notice, delay the device attack, a tax on sales and nonprofit. 0% growth margin and still get hit with the tax. you do not think immigration or daca gets included in the deal? guest: i think that we can handle that separately and we should. guest: there are a lot of important issues. if you eliminate the medical device tax, it is put there so the affordable -- affordable care act can be paid for. if you are going to eliminate them, come up with something else. what we do not -- we do not see
this how we will make up the revenue. community health centers are important, the levels are important. a lot of work needs to be done and i don't think we are any closer now than we were a month ago. bet: do you think they will a stand on immigration and dr. reform this week? you agree on is criminal justice reform. how did you come together on the issue? i had been following it talk number of years as a show host. there used to be a line, don't make a federal case about it? there ought to be a federal law. we have seen the code expand exponentially. statutes since 1980. i'm a believer in the amendment. these are especially issues for police power and we have got a
wide group of supporters from the right and the last -- the right and supporters. you have liberal and conservative reasons to support this. what is the liberal reason? guest: >> take a step back. it is a question about what you are doing. elected or yout try to reduce crime and save .oney reducing crime in saving money is something liberals and conservatives ought to agree on. if you have slogans and soundbites, many of which do not reduce crime but some of them , when you have the bill that reduces crime and saves money, it is something people ought to be able to agree on. states are way out in front of this pure the incarceration rate has exploded in the last 20 or
30 years. we have codified so many slogans and soundbites that states have figured out they cannot afford it. if you use ago, face with an s , in2 billion, one state cost, to keepon up with the prison population. someone suggested you spend the money cost, to keep more intelligently, not just soundbites, but you put money in prevention and early intervention and rehabilitation, you might not have to spend all 2 billion. about 10% of what was projected, and they found not only did they have to build new prisons, they were able to close the prison's they had. eliminated a $2 billion potential expense. it is something people ought to be able to agree on. reduce crime and save money.
the effect of justice act, safe justice act. , online.te we are taking a call as well. -- host: on the prevention side, what are specific changes you are recommending? strategies, doed what works. do not throw hardened criminals in with first time offenders, things like that. have made reforms. save money, get people out of prison. i am saying the laboratories of democracy ought to be able to be allowed to work. 500 percent, $6.7 billion over
the same time. it is a 600% increase. keep doingfford to this. we have to allow the states to experiment and reduce something that is far too expensive and get back to what works as representative scott says. is one thing but regardless, we have 32 states that have made these changes. let's see how they play out. that is good 10th amendment philosophy. congressman scott, why not focus more on the stateside? the stateot of it is and the problem is with the federal does in terms of court -- crime policy is mimic by the state. when we have a mandatory minimum sentence for drug sentences, they tend to pick it up, we tend
to pick it out and they pass in the early 1990's, and we serve as a model for the states. the states have gone to the point where they cannot afford to keep up. washington state was faced with a lot of prison expansion and prison costs. did a study to come up with what has been shown to work to reduce crime in a cost-effective basis. they went to things like early childhood education, a long-term effect, working with prisoners on second chance programs to ,educe the rate in prison rehabilitation so when they get out, they are better prepared to stay out. just a continuum. in the safe justice act, a continuum of initiatives from a research-based perspective to reduce crime and save money to one of them is a significant reduction in mandatory minimums, which at
some point require judges to violate common sense. the judge imposes a sense that makes sense, because of the we are seeingmum, it with the opioid crisis, no one is talking about five-year mandatory minimums. we are talking about mental health services and rehabilitation to deal with the prisond not strategy. >> that is an important point. these are medical issues with some drug cases and we do not want the dea overturning what state prerogative is. that happened during the clinton administration and it may happen during this one the attorney general gets his way. i believe in the 10th amendment, i don't believe you have to put first time john offenders in with hardened criminals. that is a good example. we are working on the justice
bill which passed in the house and there is a thing called a valid court order and the only reason he or she is in trouble is because of their age. do you really want to throw them in with hardened criminals and keep them locked up? that is a good way to start another one. president trump talked about the drug problem yesterday in the white house. here is what he said. president trump: we had a tremendous drug population and dealers all over the country, and we are hitting them hard, the dealers. the dealers are hit hard. what they have done to families and what they are doing to the we are, it is something focused on. whether it is the opioids, much comes through the southern border. people don't like to talk about it.
it comes through many different the jugnd means, problem as much as you could possibly be on it, and we will get it taken care of one way or the other. the tougher we get, the better it will be, the faster it will go away. we have got to get really tough on a problem. it is eating away at the heart of the country. host: the president there, the tougher we get an easier it will be, do you agree? proud -- do with the the drug problem by dealing with the supply. the problem is the demand. so long as they want the drugs, someone will supply it. take someone off the corner who is dealing with -- dealing drugs, take them off the corner and put them in jail in a long prison term, tomorrow afternoon, someone else's at the same corner. you have done nothing.
the demand.do with when you have dealt with the demand, you have done something. dealing with the dealers is helpful to cost-effective way. are you and the trump administration on the same page dealing with these issues? been $1 trillion since the war on drugs. bobby's point is a fair one. for the big kingpins, they should be serious repercussions. that is part of what we are trying to do is reserve the prison space and not throw a first-time offender in with those folks tear the street it as a medical problem. host: client for democrats, you are on with congressman scott and lewis. caller: i'm in support of
criminal justice reform, especially the massive incarcerated state-level tour. teaching in ars new jersey state prison. i am familiar with the popular -- the population. one thing to stress me with the opioid crisis is because it is hitting largely the middle class and upper-middle-class bank, we rule out immediately incarcerated and for them. when i was teaching in the 1980's in 1990's in the prison, we had poor young men made me -- mainly who were addicted and given large prison sentences, and very understaffed numbers of teachers and programs so when
they left, they could not have a decent life. revisit theird to sentences and we might want to think of expunging some of them. i do not think it is just, let's look at the opioid crisis. these folks lives were drastically changed for the worse through their addition problems. no one is talking about assisting them as they come out of prison and try to build their lives from the outside. i think it is being dealt with as a public health issue rather than a criminal justice issue. i think that is an appropriate response. but theot undo the past aboutentencing act passed 10 years ago and significantly reduced the penalties for very
low-level possession only cases. the obama administration muted sentences for those given age akoni in mandatory minimums. his permutations were for those that were low-level, nonviolent, offenders whorst had already served 10 years. the first thing that should occur to you offenders is how da low-level offender still need help? how is society getting any benefit from the expenditure of money, keeping people, low-level nonviolent offenders, for more than 10 years? you think the trump administration should commute more sentences? guest: that is what the obama administration to and you ought to look at cases that just by any objective standard, but the
response to the opioid crisis is much more appropriate and we ought to look at that as a model. you do not want to put mandatory minimums on people abusing prescription drugs. that is the problem with regard to the opioid crisis. people may be getting the back pain, which i know all about. i do not think a mandatory minimum or three strikes you're out is appropriate. to the caller's point, that is different than the infused neighborhood engaged in violence. there is a proper role and we are trying to assess priorities adding punishment to the crime. memorandum back in may helpful, jeff sessions writing in may that it is a core principle of prosecutors to
pursue the most serious and readily pursue a bull offense, our responsibility to enforce the law. the most serious offenses carry the most substantial guideline sentences concluding minimum death mandatory minimum sentences. guest: i am not sure that is the best way to go about this. everything under the elaborate commerce clause falls under federal jurisdiction. that is a reason i worked with federal debt representative scott on the issue to make sure it is a federal crime for the same state. let those democracies figure out the best approach. there does not have to be a solution for everything. guest: do it make sense under the particular circumstances. some, you have girlfriend cases where there is technically take a message for driving your
boyfriend to a drug deal, you are part of the conspiracy. the penalties based on the in they of the drugs conspiracy. message, it -- looks up 20 something years. it does not pursue that kind of mandatory minimum. >> and does not have to process. waiting, andrew massachusetts, line for democrats. was worn in a large christian family. we all went to catholic school until high school, except me because i was born with a severe lord -- severe learning disabilities. i stayed back in catholic school in first grade once, second great twice, they shove me into
the thirdool and grade teacher in public school is elected to the tried to help me. in sixth grade, -- host: bring it to criminal justice reform. this is the justice out orwhere i could drop they will keep me until i'm 21. both of my friends ended up in jail. a lot of the people that ended up doing crimes are people like me who have no other way to make money. done, and education money for it, a lot of the people would end up at least 10 jobs to where they could do it. i worked barely minimum wage. i barely read. grade to 10thxth
grade. there is a strong correlation between dropping out of school and a trajectory toward everyone trots out and does not commit a crime but the involved you getting in the criminal justice system is a lot higher if you drop out of school, trap of programs, it is shown to suit avidly reduce the crime. it is a provision you can invest in prevention programs generally. be one.ograms ought to many of the mandatory minimums, , the realghest kingpins, but for the lower level offenses, a reduction in mandatory minimums, reprogrammed for early intervention programs.
>> safe justice act, we have got to get juvenile reform through. it passed both houses and is orderp and valid court inception. which is an obstacle. criminal justice reform and governor scott -- representative scott i would hard for juvenile arm this session. >> gina, go ahead. thank you for c-span as always. i have a couple of points. 2017, the governor our moral under fortitude or whatever, she came back, alabama citizens, the
right to vote. i'm a republican and i did vote for doug jones. me, that is our part of criminal justice reform, though alabama is known for violations, and my second point is you talk about criminal justice reform, like, the department of justice, secretary jeff sessions, about marijuana in california, a sanction or -- a sanctuary state, these are violations of our laws. if y'all want to talk law, we will talk law. thank you and god bless you. host: we appreciate the call. guest: on the marijuana, there is no question if it is illegal on a federal basis, it is this something we
want to spend our money on in a state where it is legal under state law, whether we want to enforce the federal law, and that makes it something congress will have to deal with legislatively. have legalized it. >> the constitution, the police power of the states protect us from one another. in the 19th century, there is no federal code. that is a real driver on the road -- on the legislation for me to restore that principle of subsidiarity. host: line for independents.
caller: thank you c-span for having this conversation. i'm listening to the statement as far as getting hard on drug dealers. if you truly wants to keep kids off drugs in marijuana prohibition, we know it is the gateway, not the drug. it is the drug dealers. for our representatives, i would to take toey work remove marijuana from schedule one. on the computer, they can look , they see marijuana and opiates.
nothing happens, i didn't die, maybe the other -- >> sometimes they do what they are not supposed to. leadingne of the proponents and a leading advocate to undo it. one when it comes to medical marijuana. you have got to take it off that so it can be studied. i am synthetic to what the caller suggests and i cosponsored a number of legislation pieces to that effect. guest: i agree. if you look at alcohol, was alcohol considered etiquette -- a gateway drug, you do not have to do with a drug dealer to get alcohol. in most states, you have to do with a drug dealer to get marijuana.
are able to get other drugs in the gateway to other jugs is because you had to deal with a drug dealer to get marijuana. relationship,he to be a gateway drug, -- >> and the profits of something being prohibited. it encourages people to go where the margins are. the safe justice act, have you been guaranteed the time in congress? will is ahink we conservative issue for all the reasons i mentioned. i think it is good. right now, we have not that i know of. >> we are trying to get cosponsors and organizational support. it has a chance to get significant conservative and liberal support because it
paires crime and saves my other proposals, you look at them and they do not do much on mandatory minimums. they are not really doing with the mass incarceration problem. >> supporting from all over the spectrum. what will it take to get the trump administration specifically on board? ande need to pass a bill force the issue. trump'supportent pass the bill before hand? >> i think so, i do. >> are you willing to reduce crime and safety money, or are codifyingto get stuck soundbites that do nothing in terms of crime reduction and are very expensive? to a point where we have the prison population has exploded and no criminal justice value
last week,ney? host: the president held the listening sessions on reform. guest: prison reform is an area where you can make significant difference. in most -- most states, the majority are back in a couple of years. inyou can have programs prison that enable them to get jobs when they come out, they are less likely to come back. a significant portion over they keep coming back. programs,orm provides education, job training, where they are better able to deal with, get a job, and not come back. gary, democrat, good morning. i have a stepson that was in federal prison and he
hurt his knee and federal prison and did not get any medical attention to his knee. he is now disabled. he cannot work. he cannot go out of state to get a job or anything because of restrictions the government has put on it. of prison tot out get a nice job and go someplace when they are stuck in the state and cannot go any place else? it is ridiculous. as far as drugs are concerned, i agree that some drugs should be legalized. the majority of the problem we have with drugs is people, like drug dealers,, they are adding their thing to the drugs. there is the bigger problem. if you would legalize drugs, you could control them here do know what is in the drug.