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tv   Firing Line With Margaret Hoover  PBS  October 25, 2019 11:30pm-12:01am PDT

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>> ty lid alongsidide one ofmo america' beloved senators and mavericks. now they are the keepers of his legacy. this week on "firing line"... >> whatever our differences, we are fellow americans,ie and please b me when i say -- no association has ever meant more to me than that. >> to the country, m senator joain was an american h ho, a man who spent more than five years as a prisoner of war in vietnam, and then 3 1/2 decades in the uned states congress. >> we've been spinning our wheels on too many importantec issuesse we keep trying to find a way to win without help from across the aisle. we are getting nothing dnge, my friends. we're getting nog indone! >> well, to this week's guest, widow ciy and daughter meghan, he was so much more. >> i love you so much. [ applause ] >> his daughter meghan is now a
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public figure in her right, a conservative voice of "the view," defending her politics, even as the president attacks her father's legacy. >> i was never a fan of john mccain, and i never wl be. >> with senator mccain's brand of statesmanship increasingly feeling like something from a bygone era, what do the mccainsa now? >> "firing line" with margrget hoover is made possible by... additional funding is proved by...rp ate funding is provided by... cindy mccain, welcnd the "firing line."nk >> tou. >> thank you. but, you know, candidly, i alwawa want to say, like, we are personal friends, as well, and i'm a huge fan of "firing line" and ew up watching it, so i think it's important to, you know... >> to didilose the fact that -- >> that we're friends and come on this show, but, um, you know, it's sucan iconic brand. >> well, i'm grateful to have bo of you here because it has now been slightly more than aye
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since the country lost senator mccain. and he was a stalwart defender of democratic values around the world, in the united states nate, a candidate for the presidency of the united states, and d war hero. and i think about john mccain'sd legacy eve, and i wonder just in n e year since his passing, mrs. mccain, what you feel the public has gotten right about yourle husband'cy. >> i think they've gotten most of it right. ryi mean, people tell me e day -- there's not a day that passes meat someone doesn't say t "we miss him. we missed his dignity, hist. resp we missed his ability to bring peopleogether." there's a wide divide right now, and he reallll-- he was the one together during ths he wasthis in the senate. >> for me, i miss humor and partisanship, as well, which is i know not something everyone always bringso it, but he was really funny, and he
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didn't take himself seriously.ur there's a piof him giving manu raju, who's a capitol hill reporter, the devil ears behind his head. he always found levity and friendship in politics. ted kennedy was one of his closest friends, obviouslyjo biden, joe lieberman, lindsey graham, and i miss -- i miss that it was cal, that politics was collegial when he was still there. >> so, i mean, i'm glad you mentioned ted kennedy because, you know, he had many piec of legislation, but two of his trademark pieces of legislation were these really historic moments where he reached across the aisle, one with russ feingold, and then the other with ted kennedy -- one on immigration reform, the other on campaign finance reform. and it fee like a bygone era when that kind of legislate collaboratn and cooperation can happen. i remember seeing the pictures of them, and, cleay, these lines of very different world views, sitting together intently trying to find a way forward. >> and i truly believe we've seen the last of that.
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ho's so divisive now, and i know for a fact, evenh he's not here, my husband would be very disappoied in what now, what it's descended into. >> what's happened, structurally or systemically, that you thin that has made it impossible to back to? >> well, in my opinion, the social media has made it very difficult for members of congress or members of the senate to work in an efficient manner. in my opinion, i think that when people are so divisive o twitter towards you or with you or whatever it may be, it doesn't help anything, and i think all too often our members are rereonding to twitter rather th doing what's right. a >> sther thing that johnhnccain was known for is being a maverick. i'd like you to take a look at one of those maverick moments, perhaps his last, where he turned his thumbs down and voted against overrning the affordable care act.
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[ gasping, appuse ] now, there's a backstoryo that moment. he risked his life to come back to the capitol to take that vote. >> mm-hmm, biggest fight i ever got in with him in our life, ever, and i was --em as you rr, i was screaming at him in the e spital because he had just had surg his tumor for his brain cancer, and it was danroro to fly, and i just remember that flight from phoenix to d.c. is one of th wot moments and experiences of my entire life because i was watching him hhe entire time worried something was gonna happen, yeah. >> did you know how he would vote? >> i didn't. i knew that they were a lot of people pressururg him. i also knew that he never agreed with the bill if the bill wasl not written correctly. >> he stated very clearly he had problems with the process and the way the system hadad d brokn, that it had been done behind closed doors, th
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republicans had campaigned on it for years and years... >> right. >> ...and they wer't able to deliver r at they had promised the american people. i want you to also listen towh he said about what was going on in congress in that time. >> let's trust each. let's return to regular order.in we'v'vbeen spiour wheels on too many important issues because we keep trying to nd way to win without help from across the aisle. were getting nothing done, my friends. we're getting nothing done! >> do you think regular orderve can return, or is it also about leadership? >> well, it is about -- it's a great deal about leadership, but i also know because ve been around a long time that washington's a pendulum. you see it swing one way, and then you see it swing another way. i think we're probably gonna have to get through 2020, to be honest with you, in my opinion. it's just we're too separated ri,t now, not only as parti but as a country. >> why 2020?
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>> well, i think that that's -- it's either make-it-or-break-it. either trump wins or doesn't, or biden wins or doesn't, and -- that's a hurdle that i think a lot of people see we have to jump over before we can fix this, one way or another. >> one of the things the mccain institute focuses on is character-driven leadership. >> yes. >> what is character-drive leadership mean to you? >> well, what it means and whate he wit, you know, with regardrdto the institute, is about teaching young professionals, mid-career professionals from around the world, bringing them here to the united stas and spending a year -- we're t talking party politics, we're talking about making really good decisions for your country or for your community, whatever it may be. making decisions t tt maybe aren't always the easiest to make. you know, some of the hardest things john ever didere making the right decisions on things. >> mrs. mccain, you said that you have never been prouder of him than when you heard his
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concession speech after the election on november 4th in08 i want to watch a moment of what he said. >> a century ago, president theodore roosevelt's invitation of booker t. washington t at the white house was taken as an outrage in many quarters. america today is a wory bigotry of that ti prideful there is no better evidence of this than the election of an african-american to the presidency of the united states. let there be no reason now -- [ cheers and applause ] let there be no reason now for any american to fail to cherish their citizenship in this, ththe greatest nation on e [ cheers and applause ] >> he then went on to say he would do everything he could to help the incoming presesent,
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rack obama. and he even, you know, had the privilege of having barack obama eulogize him at t s passing. >> mm-hmm. mm-hmm. >> how was that relationship? i >> you knowas -- y it had its moments, you know, because they disagreed on things, but john believed in the spirit of the debate ande believed in ghteousness of the debate. that speech to me, when i read it, because he previewedt for me, i've never heard in prprably -- good as that ever againech as becae it the right thingca to say, and it was the thing that the country needed to hear. >> mm-hmm. >> especially with thatel tion. so i was very proud of him. i was always proud of him, b bry i was ro of him that ght. >> you may not know this, but in 1998, johnn appeared on the original "firing line" with tlliam f. buckley jr., , d he was speaking abon smoking, and he brought meghan up. let's ta a loo >> i -- i read somewhere that, in the last two or three years,
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the number of leading mewhwh are seen smoking has increased byby00% or 500% over against seven or eight years ago. ishere something we can do about it? >> leonardrddicaprio is anmy object o3-year-o daughter's affection to the degree which i have never experienced. >> so he smokes, she'll smoke. yeah. >> yeah, i mean, this young n has captured the hearts of every 13-year-old girl in america, and what does he do throughout the movie? they're continuously smoking. bruce willis in the "die hard" movies -- he smokes continusly through those,nd i'm not picking on hihior leonardna i have othererroblems with leonardo, but... [ laughter ] the fact is...d >> he seduur daughter. >> yes. to distraction. ?you know, he has a w h w anyway, well, that's not surprising. >> he has a website?. >> they have a chat room website, my daughter and herer friends, so that they can chatou
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.. >> about leonardo. >> about leonardo. it's remarkable. >>t's what he talked about with william f. buckley? [ laughter ] okay, everyone. by the way, i do n smoke cigattes and never he, so just -- but i did have a hush ondad... him. >> w wch means it starts in the home. [ laughter ]to >> listeow seriously he took you. he was super tapped in to where you are and what you thought ant what you were taking seriously. >> yeah, i mean, almost -- like, sometimes i wish he would have pulled me back a little bit, but... >> [ chuckles ] >> been a little bit more involveded >> he, you know, he was wild when he was younger, and he r,h we're so mike in so many ways, and -- to the point that metis it -- it's the good and the bad. like, i think people see me on "the view" sometimes and my executive producer's like, "you'ralways shooting from the hip, and you just react, and you're intense, and you believe what you believe," and i'm like, "where do you think i got that one e om?" >> so john mccain seems to have a new fan baseseod, and it's in the democratic party.
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>> mm-hmm. >here's a campaign going on, at's really interesting to me is how many democrats are invoking hisame and his memory for some of their own purposes. i want to show you a look. >> and then the late, great john mccain, at that moment, at about 2:00 in the morning, killed his -- [ cheers and applause ] atmpt totoake healthcare from millions of ople in this country. >> i was in afghanistan. with john mccain 2 years ago this past summer. i think it mayave been senator mccain's last trip bere he was sick. >> mrs. mccain, what do you think about all these candidates invokiki your husband's meryry >> i thihi my husband would have a real chuckle over it, i really do. >> yeah.>> ou know, i respect them, and that's v'sy nice that they would use him, you know, and relay their experiences that they hadi him. >> but you haven't always loved it, meghan. >> i iemember when he was orge wallace, when he was accused of being racist for eve
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attemptingn against the first african-american candidate, andndagain, my mom is much more forgiving than am, and i remember people taking real low blows and low shots at him, and i also appreciate people respecting and bringing him up, but i also think that him so much and demonizedized mitt romney so much, maybe it diwouldn't have bred the f ground for trump because trump didn't juscome. it took a long time to get there, so people now show these to reach across the aisle, toing work alongside -- he was a truly decent, wonrf man. i'm not justjuayinthat because and now we have sowho has, i believe, no character, no diipline, has no interest inwo ing with the other side, and i think that it was the beginning of it, if we look back now in the past 1010ears. >> donald trump has raised your dad's legacy negatively seven times since his passing. what is it that experience
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personally, when the president -- >> i go crazy.o i turn ie she-hulk. it makes me -- i get very emotional and ve angry, and normally have to call you. >> [ chucklesus >> or mynd. >> for me, i just -- it make me sad. it makes me safor the president inhat way because he never really k kw john. >> yeaea >> hnever really knew the ki of man that he is and was. and so thamakes me sad because i think he would he learneded and probably lim a great deal. but i also think that, you know, politics is politics. ays,ou know, as john "we're fair game, the kids aren't," kind of thing. >> i'm fair game now. yeah. [ chuhules ] so, i understand. he taught me great lessons about how to be controlled and not let thth get to you. >> i always called my dad president trump's kryptonite 'cause he's like thean he can -- that will always be lov mad revered in history and looked upon by s
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politicians as an icon. and i can sit here with 100% certainty president trump will be an extremely polarizing, controversial figure who i believe has pulled us into darkness in our country, and i g think my dad was attempt pull us into the light. >> ms. mccain, you just said,ys you know, you re fair game, the kids aren't. meghan said, "well, now i am fair game."kn yo, you're fair game now because you're a co-host of "the view," a daily potical television show that has been called "the most important america." television show in what is your experience? 'cause you really are the onlyre blican on that set -- >> i say "conservative," because there are other women thathe defineelves as republican, and -- >> and you're a conservative. and you defend conservatived credentials lues every day from that seat. >> i do. >> i want to look at one thingls you'vesaid about it. >> okay. and i was trying to explain -- because one of my producers this morning was saying, "why do people love him so much?", and i was liometimes it's not just that they love trump so much, it's that they hate the same things trump hate" that's what's going on?
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>> who, black people, you mean and immigrants? >> no, i mean -- >> who do they hate? who do they hate? >> you know what, joy? i really come here every day open-minded, just trying to plain it, and it's not a fun job for me every day. w >> b do they hate? >> i know you're angry. >> you bet i'm angry. >> i get that you're angry that ump's president, like a lot of people are, but i don't think problem.at me is gonna fix the but being the sacrificialic republican every day, i'm just trying to -- here's the thing -- >> don't feel bad for me. i'm paid to do this, okay? don't feel bad for me. [ laughter ]nt my finest mon all of tv. if i mean, i tnk it must feell like you're a saial conservative every d d, right? i mean, you have to -- the country is evenldivided, pretty evenly divided ideologically, right? but you're the only one of those four or five that are espousing a view that a much larger percentage of the country holds. >> well, i thinkt's why you and i became friends originally is there just aren't that many conservative women -- realin ones -ainstream m dia. for me, it's interesting that the media ways will allow one
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conservative on a giant panel across all networks, unless you're at fox. you're allowed one. and then, there's a sea of one. myopic opini and i think that's disingenuous to what's going on, and i-- thin for me, i can't stand president trump, personally. i will not be voting forim. i did not vote for him. and even for me, i'm sort of,ci like, not ly acceptable enough, and i do have times where -- >> you have to dend that you're explaining why trump idters support him. >> i take great in the fact that i sort of -- i did not want to join "the view" at all. i was not interested, and my dad told me to do it. and anything he told me e do, i would do. fact that i've lasted longerhe than any conservative since elisabeth. and was called a mushy rino for most of my career.de all of a s i'm like the queen conservative, and none's more surpred abo it than i am. >> do you worry about the future of the party in a post-trump world? >> 100%. >> do you think the party is
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going to ronate with young people, people your age and younger? >> i really worry about it, because -- and the numbers show this, by the way. whatever you want to say about the left or people like aoc,c, they do a really good job ofng speao young people. and i think, for us -- and i always laugh -- like, young republican groups start at 40. an,i think post-trump ameri for the party, is gonna be a ry, very dark place to rebuild. >> i mean, i don't know how we rebuild, but, cind you shook your head. as you think about your children, your grandchildren, and having republican party appeal, this concerns you? >> it concerns me very much, ans i'ak for my own home state, where the party has simply left "normal" -- what we would consider normal -- republicans behind.r until rty goes back to what we were best at, and thatpe was ansystem, an open tent, we invited everybody in, those are the days that i grew up in republican politics, and it was -- those were good ars.
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president trump has done some things that all of us, a ameghan said, it's been -- they've been controversial, they've been different from what any other president has done and n in good ways. and yet nobody ss anything. nobody scolds him for really was bad manners -- orev wh you want to call it, whatever issue it was of the day. >> i mean, we knowou senator mccain have if he were alive, but why -- why not anybody else? >> i don't know. i don't understand. >> i think fear of not being inr office or in p >> well, they're terrified of him, politically, i believe. >> do you think if your husband up to the presidenwouldstanding give courage to others to do the sa? yeah, he gave cover to a lot of people. >> mm-hmm. >> i want to ask you a another thing thathe mccain institute focuses on, and that's sex trafficking. oh, yeah. m- i mean, this is one of the pillars and priorities of the mccain institute, ich is associated with arizona state university and is a think tank. what ignited your passion for this issue? >> well, r rlly, a very long
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time a, when i brought meghan's sister home from bangladesh, she was from mother teresa's orphane. and so, several years later, i had an opportunity to t mother teresa in calcutta, and i dijust that. and after i met r and had -- you know, we had pictures taken and all at kind of stuff. i was on my way out to leave the country, but i stopped to buy some sari material for my daughter bridget. and while i was buying it, there was this kinof rumbling through the floor of the kiosk i was in, and so i asked the g behind the counter, and he saiai "oh, no, it's just my family. they live down there." and i looked down, and you could kind of see between the slats, and i could see all these little eyes looking up at me. theyere clearly children bei kept down there. and it wasn't -- you know, th weren't his. it was just -- o it was othose things -- it was the moment i didn't know what i was looking at, i had no idea what this was or whether or not anyone could fix it, kind of where i was coming from.
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so it took me years to really figure out not onlwhat it was but what i could do. >> how big a deal is this? >> it's epidemic. it's absolutely epidemic. >> what's it gonna take really make a difference, to really make an impact in this fight? >> a change of attitude, number one.y certaire awareness, which is what we're doing. but more importantly, the understanding that this is a simple human-rights issue.e, it's not simut it -- this is a basic human-rights isise. these people are being deprived of their freedom. >> john mccain was a ardent defender of human rights and democratic values. and you started, on the one-year anniversy of his passing, a movement online called acts of civility. >> mm-hmm. we did. >> what was that? >> that was about just what we've been talking about here moving back to civil behavior between not just our govnment officials but between people -- your neighbors, your frien. >> want to ask you one more
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question about joe biden, who was a longtime friend of your dad's and your husband. he, of course, is nning. you earlier said we have to get pastst020 because it'll either be presint trump or joe biden. >> and i get a little, like -- when you said that, i was like -- [ knocks ] -- "joe biden." >> i did the same thinth >> becau it could be -- i mean, not to be super cynical, but elizabeth warren's coming up fast and hard right now. >> right. so, what's it gonna take? i mean, do you -- in the way that u say it's a bygone era, inome ways, to sort of reach across the aisle and to do the kind of jockeying that ted kennedy and russ feingold did with john mccain, joe biden was part of that era. >> he was. >> has the era bypasd joe biden? >> i don't think so. >> it's still in there. i mean, joe's a lovely -- not only a lovely person, but heas always a good legislator, in terms of how he worked across the aisle, how he -- you have to remember, joe was alere before john was, and john
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learned a great rom joe. >> if you could be helpful to joe biden, would you?in he race? >> i'm trying to -- i'm gonna try to stay out of iti juststecau-- it's -- i -- i'm not -- i'm not the politician ithe family. it's really meghan and her father that were. but -- so i'm gonna try to stay out of it, but i do -- i do like joe biden. he's a very good friend. he helped us through a very dark time. would you, at the time?helpful, >> it depends. i mean, i struggle with -- it will turn out what kind of candidate he ends up being. you know, i still hope for thert moderate, bipaan joe. i think the question he will pulled to the hard progressivees left. i have my limitations with this, as well, and i can't vote for -- mean, i would never vote -- i'm not voting for arat. i'll probably end up writing in paul ryan or something. >> you wouldn't vote for joe biden if he were running against trump? >> it depends how he runs. you know, it depends who he chooses. it dependshat his policies
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arar i want to, like, get there when i get there, but -- though.don't rule it o >> i always tell people one man is actively on televisio berating my beloved father who has passednd another m eulogized him. what would y do? >> [ laughs ] >> vote for him. >> i don't know. again, i have to see, but my my heart always beats oumyy and brain, for better or for worse, in politics. always. >> it was joe's wife that introduced john and >> yes. >> jill? i didn't know that. >> yeah, and it's just -- they're so intertwined in our life, and -- that sometimes what makes me a bad analyst right nohink, because i'm so emotionally involved. the pain of grief is -- you can't explain it until you've experienced ine r could've understood itit joe biden is the mostle incred- i call him the grief whisperer. the way he interprets pain and grief and loss, i've never -- i've met no therapist, analyst,
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guidance counselor, nothing,gu that possibly compares to him it. and i think the country's in a lot of pain. honestly, i don't know what i would be like without him. i think i would be in an even darker place. has it gotten easier after the year mark? >> i thought so, but you just -- i just miss him so much. i miss his sense of humor. i mi watching you guys together in sedona. i'm not trying to make you cry. >>h, y're okay. >> but it's just -- it never -- it doesn't get easier, don't want people to think it gets easier. because i think there's a lot of stigmabout "well, you've been through a yeararso it should stop being so painful," and it's t true -- for me. for me, it's not true. >> yes..ust learn how to live >> it is an honor to have boe of you in my life, to have both of you here at "firing line," and to have you carry the torch and to continue to carryhe torch forward for your father's legacy and for your husband's legacy. thank you for being on "firing line." >> thank you.
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>> thank you, margaret.>> "firing line with margaret hoover" is made possible by... additional funding is provided by... corporate funding is provided by... >> you're watching pbs.
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♪ welcome to the program, everyone. hello everyone and welcome to "aman "ur & co." s re's what's comimi up. the evidencepowerful some more powerful already tha t what we saw in the impeament of richard nixon. >> former secretary of state john kerry on impeachment, we e trail in syrnd the climate ergency. plus -- star of stage and screen, brian cox dissects his roles of f e moment. president ndononohnson on broadway and the ruthless murdoch media mogul on the hit show "succession." >> when we shine a light in a dark place, not everybody is going to like it.

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