PBS NewsHour full episode, Dec 16, 2019


JUDY WOODRUFF: Good evening. I’m Judy Woodruff. On the “NewsHour” tonight: the start of an
historic week — what to expect as the full House of Representatives prepares to impeach
the president. Then: cooling ambitions. A global meeting on climate change ends without
a deal, fueling even greater doubts about our ability to stem the crisis. And looking for child care? There’s an app for that. Tech start-ups are connecting parents and
providers, but, for many, the costs are still insurmountable. BRIANNA BRAUN, Mother: If I were to pay $250
a week, that would be almost half of my salary a month. And then, you know, on top of rent, utilities,
food, if he needs anything, it’s definitely just not workable for me. JUDY WOODRUFF: All that and more on tonight’s
“PBS NewsHour.” (BREAK) JUDY WOODRUFF: The specter of impeachment
looms larger than ever over President Trump tonight. The crucial votes in the U.S. House of Representatives
are set for midweek. Congressional correspondent Lisa Desjardins
begins our coverage. LISA DESJARDINS: With a gray winter cloud
over Washington, Congress is slowly returning to town. But news and events are moving more quickly. The House Judiciary Committee released a several-hundred-page
report laying out the history, evidence and central argument behind its articles of impeachment. The committee wrote: “Where a president engages
in a course of conduct involving serious betrayal of national interest through foreign entanglements,
or corruption of office and elections, impeachment is justified.” On Twitter, President Trump again rejected
the charges, calling the process an impeachment hoax and a con job, this as key Democrats
in Trump-leaning areas began to declare how they will vote REP. ELISSA SLOTKIN (D-MI): On the very basic facts.. (SHOUTING) LISA DESJARDINS: Michigan Congresswoman Elissa
Slotkin faced an audibly conflicted crowd at a town hall today, including some vocal
pro-Trump protesters. PROTESTERS: Four more years! LISA DESJARDINS: Seen as an influential freshman,
the former intelligence worker said she wrestled with the decision, but the president’s requests
to Ukraine made her feel she must impeach. REP. ELISSA SLOTKIN: As a CIA officer and as someone
who has sworn an oath to protect and defend the Constitution, reaching out to a foreign
power is something fundamentally different. LISA DESJARDINS: On CNN, Colorado’s Jason
Crow also said he will vote to impeach, but he stopped short of saying the president should
be removed. But another moderate Democrat, New Jersey’s
Jeff Van Drew, reportedly disagrees. According to multiple outlets, he plans to
vote against impeachment and switch to the Republican Party. As the House prepares for votes, the Senate
prepares for an expected trial. Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer today
made an offer for how it could work. Schumer wrote Senate Majority Leader Mitch
McConnell last night, suggesting opening presentations by each side and four witnesses, acting White
House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney, former National Security Adviser John Bolton, senior
White House adviser Robert Blair, and budget official Michael Duffey. All have declined House requests to testify,
but other testimony indicates they all may have heard directly from the president about
Ukraine. SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): These are the best four
witnesses for that case. And, by the way, we don’t want to be dilatory. We don’t want to stress this out any longer
than we have to. But these people are crucial and haven’t been
heard from. And, again, that’s the difference with 1999. And it’s a total difference. LISA DESJARDINS: This as some Senate Republicans,
like South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, are pushing for a short Senate trial. SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): The president was denied
the ability to participate meaningful in the House hearing. And I want to end it. I have nothing but disdain for this. LISA DESJARDINS: The House vote is expected
Wednesday. JUDY WOODRUFF: And Lisa joins me now at the
table. Lisa, so much to keep track of here, but you
reported on how several moderate Democrats are handling this. What do we know about any other moderate Democrats? LISA DESJARDINS: Just in the space of the
last few hours, we have seen many more come out, Virginia’s Abigail Spanberger, for example,
also another Virginia, Jennifer Wexton, today. It seems, Judy, that, of the Democrats to
think about, it’s a group of about 18 to 20 that are probably the most vulnerable here,
especially freshmen. So far, all of those vulnerable Democrats
who have announced have announced for impeachment, except for the one that we pointed out, Jeff
Van Drew, who reportedly will be for impeachment and switch parties. JUDY WOODRUFF: From New Jersey. LISA DESJARDINS: That’s right. JUDY WOODRUFF: So, now what more do we know
about what’s next in the House before this Wednesday vote? LISA DESJARDINS: Wednesday will be the big
day. Tomorrow, however, will be a long and important
day. The House Rules Committee will debate the
rules for debate. How exactly will they talk about impeachment? On Wednesday, Judy, that’s going to be a long
day. They will start at 11:00 a.m., potentially
go all day long, debating how to approach impeachment. In the end, we expect Democrats to get the
rules that they want. And so it’s just to say you can watch the
process tomorrow, but Wednesday is really the big day. JUDY WOODRUFF: And then what about in the
Senate? It happens in January, but there are already
preparations, as you reported. LISA DESJARDINS: Let’s take a closer look
at what Senator Schumer is proposing. And it’s such an interesting political idea. He wants to sort of set the bar at the beginning. He would like the trial to begin there January
7, of course, assuming the House passes articles, as expected, this week. He would — he would propose even time for
pro and con impeachment, including the president’s legal team in there. And then he would like witnesses to be public
and live. And, Judy, that’s significant, because, in
1999, as Schumer was talking about, during the Clinton impeachment, some might remember
that the witness testimony was not live. It was recorded in depositions. Monica Lewinsky on camera recorded something. And excerpts of those videos were shown to
senators, not actual live testimony. Here, Schumer wants live testimony. The understanding is that Senator McConnell
wants a shorter trial. He does not seem to want these witnesses or
perhaps any witnesses, but discussions will be ongoing. JUDY WOODRUFF: Still a lot — a lot to work
out there. LISA DESJARDINS: That’s right. JUDY WOODRUFF: So, separately, Lisa, you’re
reminding us lawmakers are working on a giant government funding bill. It includes some interesting things, including
health care funding involving young people, tobacco. Tell us about that. LISA DESJARDINS: This is some huge news out
of the House and Senate tonight, Judy. In the spending deal that we touched on last
week, we are seeing the details. And the number one, Judy, Senate and House
negotiators have agreed to raise the minimum age for purchasing tobacco products in this
country to 21. This is a map of where the minimum age is
21 now. So this change will affect many states, Judy. And I just found out from some sources that
this change — and in the bill text that was just released, the change would go into effect
over the next three to five years. But this is a huge change for those who think
that cigarettes are very harmful, including Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky. This is a Republican and Democrat bipartisan
agreement. JUDY WOODRUFF: So interesting. And then you have learned more about what’s
in this big funding bill. LISA DESJARDINS: Yes, quickly, let me run
through some other very big highlights. This is significant news. First, at the top of the list, gun violence. The spending deal would spend $25 million
for research into gun violence, the first time in two decades for that, Judy. Also another big item, it would repeal some
of the Affordable Care Act taxes for health care, the Cadillac tax for very kind of large
health insurance plans, and the medical device tax also. And this deal would include $425 million for
election security, all of these huge items that have stopped bills dead in their tracks
for years. But, somehow, as everyone’s focused on impeachment,
these appropriators have been able to make these very large deals. And Democrats especially, it seems tonight,
are kind of putting out things that they feel are large gains, gun violence, a huge issue. And this is the first time we have seen any
change on that issue in Congress. JUDY WOODRUFF: And that’s something the NRA
had opposed for a long time. LISA DESJARDINS: That’s right. There was actually legislation in place banning
that research. Not only now will it be allowed; it will be
funded by Congress. JUDY WOODRUFF: Such a huge story. A lot to follow there. LISA DESJARDINS: If the president signs. We expect the president to sign, but he still
must, yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: Lisa Desjardins, thank you. LISA DESJARDINS: You’re welcome. JUDY WOODRUFF: In the day’s other news: Boeing
announced that it is temporarily halting production on its 737 MAX airliners in January. The plane was grounded worldwide back in March,
after two crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia killed a total of 346 people. The Federal Aviation Administration is undergoing
a review to decide when to allow the jet to return to the skies. The Trump administration moved to defuse a
dispute over a new trade pact with Mexico and Canada. Mexico objected on Sunday to having U.S. government
officials monitor enforcement of Mexican labor laws. Today, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer
promised the officials will not act as inspectors and will be subject to Mexican law. President Trump’s top economic adviser insisted
today that a phase one trade agreement with China is a done deal. The pact was announced on Friday, but Chinese
officials have said it is not completely settled. Larry Kudlow claimed today that it is, and
he predicted that U.S. exports to China will double as a result. Meanwhile, China strongly criticized the U.S.
for expelling two Chinese Embassy officials who breached security at a U.S. military base
last September. U.S. officials say the pair drove into a site
near Norfolk, Virginia, that houses special operations forces. In Beijing today, the Chinese Foreign Ministry
demanded the expulsions be canceled. GENG SHUANG, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson
(through translator): The U.S. accusation against these diplomats is seriously contrary
to the facts. China has lodged solemn complaints and protests
with the U.S. We strongly urge the U.S. to correct its mistakes,
reverse its decision and protect the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese diplomats. JUDY WOODRUFF: This is the first time that
the U.S. has thrown out Chinese diplomats over suspected espionage in more than 30 years. China’s President Xi Jinping voiced renewed
support today for Hong Kong’s leader after six months of anti-government protests. Xi met with the city’s chief executive, Carrie
Lam, in Beijing. He praised her for holding firm amid widespread
allegations of police brutality. There were new violent clashes on Sunday,
after a recent lull. Lebanon’s political limbo refused to give
way today, after mass protests in Beirut over the weekend. Security forces carried out the most violent
crackdown since the unrest began in October. Water cannon, tear gas, and rubber bullets
left dozens injured. Even as the crisis worsened, the country’s
president again postponed talks on naming a new prime minister. A top U.S. diplomat today rejected North Korea’s
demand for U.S. concessions in nuclear talks by year’s end. Special Representative Stephen Biegun met
with South Korean officials in Seoul. He urged the North to reopen negotiations
on its nuclear program. STEVE BIEGUN, U.S. Special Representative
for North Korea: We are here. And you know how to reach us. We are fully aware of the strong potential
for North Korea to conduct major provocations in the days ahead. To say the least, such an action will be most
unhelpful in achieving a lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula. JUDY WOODRUFF: North Korea has ramped up weapons
testing in recent months, including a second major test at a rocket launch site last Friday. The U.S. Supreme Court opted today not to
hear a case on banning homeless people from sleeping outdoors in public spaces. Instead, the justices today left in place
an appeals court ruling against an ordinance in Boise, Idaho. That law barred the homeless from camping
outside when no other shelter is available. A federal judge has blocked Georgia from purging
313,000 people from voting rolls, at least for now. It would have affected those who have moved
or died or have not voted in seven years. Democrat Stacey Abrams led the legal challenge. She lost to Republican Brian Kemp in last
year’s governor’s race. Kemp carried out extensive voter purges as
secretary of state. And on Wall Street, three major indexes reached
record finishes again. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 100
points to close at nearly 28236. The Nasdaq rose 79 points and the S&P 500
added 22. Still to come on the “NewsHour”: climate anxieties
continue to rise, as a global conference ends in stalemate; Amy Walter and Tamara Keith
analyze the politics of impeachment; what India’s new citizenship law means for the
world’s largest democracy; and much more. Global climate talks in Madrid ended yesterday
with little agreement on addressing what many say is the single greatest challenge facing
humanity. William Brangham has more on why the talks
failed to achieve nearly any of its stated goals. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: That’s right, Judy. These marathon talks ended with a small compromise
and an enormous disappointment. The annual gathering known as COP ended 14
days of talks where the biggest polluting nations were unwilling or unable to agree
on stronger plans to curb their emissions, the very things that are dangerously warming
this planet. They also postponed a decision on carbon markets,
which are considered a key tool for trying to slow climate change. Antonio Guterres, the secretary-general of
the United Nations, expressed the feelings of many. ANTONIO GUTERRES, United Nations Secretary-General:
We are not on track. Emissions are still growing. So the reality is still nothing comparable
with the commitments that we hope will be made. The reality is that emissions are growing. We reached record levels of concentration
of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere, corresponding only to what we had millions and millions
of years ago. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: For more on this diplomatic
failure, I’m joined now by Helen Mountford. She’s vice president for climate and economics
at the World Resources Institute. And she is just back from Madrid. Welcome to the “NewsHour.” HELEN MOUNTFORD, World Resources Institute:
Thank you. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: I know that this conference
was not the be-all and end-all climate conference, but the evidence is growing more and more
that climate change is a real and growing threat. There are tens of thousands of kids all over
the world protesting our inaction. And yet world leaders just cannot seem to
come to terms. Can you just help us understand, what happened
in Madrid? HELEN MOUNTFORD: Thank you very much. I think it’s exactly as you say. There is a huge disconnect between what we
are seeing on the ground with the kids, the protesters saying, we need more climate action,
the science is clearer than ever — we need to step up and do more — and what happened
in the negotiation halls, where, mostly, the negotiators were moving at a snail’s pace. There was a lot of brinkmanship. We saw real leadership from some of the smaller
and medium-sized economies, particularly those most vulnerable to climate impacts. They really stood up and tried to push as
hard as possible to move forward to advance work. But it was the major emitters who were largely
either absent or obstructionist. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: Some of the obstructionists,
or negligence, whatever you want to call it, is some of that shorter-term economic thinking? Because we know elections are won in the here
and now. And many leaders look at the state of their
economy as crucial. And still, despite what we see everyday, some
people think climate change is going to affect the next or the next president. Is that some of what’s going on here? HELEN MOUNTFORD: I think there is definitely
some short-termism and some basically very much focused on their own interests, each
trying to get the best that they could out of the deal. But the reality is, we know now that the economics
are better than ever in terms of climate action. When the Paris accord was agreed four years
ago, since then, what we have actually seen is, the cost of renewables have plummeted. We have new technologies that are available
on electric vehicles or battery storage, which have really opened up possibilities. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: We know that President Trump
has pledged that he’s going to formally pull out of the Paris climate accords. What do you make of the argument that some
people say that, in the absence of strong U.S. leadership at the table, that this is
the natural thing that’s going to happen, which is the other major emitters say, if
the U.S. is not there, neither are we? HELEN MOUNTFORD: Well, I think that’s partly
what we’re seeing, but what we are also starting to see is some of the other major emitters
are starting to step up and say, OK, in the absence of the U.S. at the table, we really
need to do a little bit more, and we need to show that leadership. So, I would particularly highlight the European
Union. Last week, they agreed that they’re going
to go to net zero emissions of carbon by 2015. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: I mean, that’s a huge step. HELEN MOUNTFORD: It’s a huge step. It’s really important. We have seen those sorts of commitments from
some of the smaller, medium-sized economies, particularly the developing countries that
are vulnerable to climate change. But that’s the first major emitter that said
that. Canada has also said that they want to go
that way, and they need parliamentary approval, but they’re planning to go. So, I think we’re starting to see some of
the other major emitters step up to the plate, but it wasn’t really in time for these negotiations. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: Still missing from that
list of the major emitters though, is, China, the elephant in the room, the rising emitter
in the room. And India, what are those nations doing? HELEN MOUNTFORD: Well, they’re actually doing
quite a bit domestically. But I think they are looking to the more developed
economies and saying, look, we expect you to stand up first. And we expect you to move forward. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: Because you put the vast
majority of greenhouse gases up in the atmosphere, and now you’re saying, as we’re starting to
grow, hold off on your economy. HELEN MOUNTFORD: Right. That’s exactly right. They’re starting to say, well, we want to
see you taking action before we do so as well. I think they are starting to move, but we
do need some more leadership from other major economies to start forward. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: There was also some disagreement
on this whole issue of how to set up the carbon markets. HELEN MOUNTFORD: Yes. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: The idea being, put a tax
on carbon, make everybody pay for emitting that carbon, and then countries can buy and
sell credits to emit different amounts. What happened in that regard? HELEN MOUNTFORD: So, that’s right. I mean, this was really about the international
carbon markets, how countries can collaborate together, which, if it’s done well, will actually
lead to more ambitious climate action, cheaper climate action, and more collaboration. If it’s done poorly, it actually could lead
to more emissions, rather than less. And I think the risk that we saw there was,
as they were starting to set up the rules for how to do these international carbon markets,
a number of countries were pushing forward and trying to sort of add in loopholes, which
would actually lead to more emissions, rather than less. And so, at the end of the day, other countries
stood up and said, look, we are not willing to accept carbon market rules which are actually
going to jeopardize the Paris agreement. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: Lot of pressure on — coming
next year’s conference. HELEN MOUNTFORD: Absolutely. WILLIAM BRANGHAM: Helen Mountford, thank you
very much for being here. HELEN MOUNTFORD: Thank you. JUDY WOODRUFF: For Washington lawmakers, the
focus right now is on the issues of government spending, trade, and, most of all, impeachment. But, in Pittsburgh this past weekend, many
of the 2020 Democrats were spotlighting another issue: education. Seven presidential hopefuls made their pitches
to teachers and advocates. Here’s a sample of what the candidates said: SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT), Presidential Candidate:
We’re going to make sure that every teacher in this country is adequately paid. That means at least $60,000 a year. JOSEPH BIDEN (D), Presidential Candidate:
If you had $10 to spend and, that’s all you had to spend on education, I’d spend seven
of it on preschool. SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA), Presidential Candidate:
All charter schools should have to meet the same requirements that all other public schools
have to meet. (CHEERING AND APPLAUSE) JUDY WOODRUFF: This coming Thursday should
see the seven of the Democratic candidates on stage together in Los Angeles for the next
primary debate, which is being hosted by the “NewsHour,” along with Politico. But a labor dispute involving the debate site,
Loyola Marymount University, has raised concerns for the candidates. The dispute is between food service workers
and Sodexo. That’s a company contracted by Loyola Marymount. The union representing the workers has said
that it plans to picket the debate. All seven qualifying candidates have threatened
to honor the picket line and to boycott the debate unless a solution is found. Some discussed the controversy over the weekend. ANDREW YANG (D), Presidential Candidate: I
think it’s a terrible look for the Democratic Party to have a debate, and that runs afoul
of union work rules. SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR (D-MN), Presidential Candidate:
I don’t believe we should cross the picket line. So, I would encourage the DNC to try to work
this out. (APPLAUSE) TOM STEYER (D), Presidential Candidate: I
believe that they are probably trying to work with all the parties to resolve this, because
having these debates is critical for Americans to see the differences between candidates. JUDY WOODRUFF: The Democratic National Committee
said today that chairman Tom Perez spent the weekend urging stakeholders to take part in
good-faith negotiations. Between this week’s debate and impeachment,
there’s plenty of political news to digest on either coast. And that brings us to our politics Monday
duo, Amy Walter of The Cook Political Report and public radio’s “Politics With Amy Walter,”
and Tamara Keith of NPR. She also co-hosts the “NPR Politics Podcast.” Hello to both of you. It is Politics Monday. So, we are going to talk about the debate,
but, first, let’s talk about impeachment. Tam, as we heard Lisa Desjardins reporting
earlier, a number of moderate Democrats are starting to announce, people who were considered
maybe on the fence, where they are for and against. So far, most of them say, the ones who’ve
declared, they’re going to vote for impeachment. But where does all of this stand, and how
much does it matter how many Democrats? TAMARA KEITH, National Public Radio: So, Congressman
Van Drew, who is apparently on his way out the door of the Democratic Party, is a pretty
decent example of what happens when you’re a Democrat who decides that you’re opposed
to impeachment at this moment. And his experience is simply that the Democratic
Party of New Jersey wasn’t there for him anymore. And he ran into the arms of President Trump,
who has been tweeting nice things about him. So the problem for moderate Democrats, if
they vote against impeachment, is that, you know, the sort of national Democratic grassroots
money that’s been flowing into a lot of their races, that would dry up, and they would lose
sort of the energy of their local Democratic base, which leads to what you see, which is
a lot of these moderate Democrats are now coming out in favor of impeachment. You know, they all but — all but two of them
voted to do the… JUDY WOODRUFF: To go ahead with the inquiry. (CROSSTALK) TAMARA KEITH: To begin the inquiry. And if you voted to begin the inquiry, you’re
going to be brushed with that brush. You are not going to avoid this fight in your
general election coming up next year. AMY WALTER, The Cook Political Report: Yes,
I think that’s very fair, although — so, in the — I don’t know how this is going to
work out necessarily in the long term, although, as I have said before, I’m very skeptical
we’re going to be talking about impeachment by the time we hit the summer of 2020 and
that this is going to be on the minds of voters as they go into the voting booth in November
2020. The short-term impact, though, let’s not take
away the fact that Jeff Van Drew switching parties and becoming a Republican, that’s
a big pickup for Republicans. Now, they’re still 18 seats short of the majority,
but if you’re looking for who won in the short-term, literally getting a seat that you didn’t have
a week ago is a pretty big victory. But I also — I know we’re going to be talking
about our poll as well and what that is showing. JUDY WOODRUFF: We are. We are, because what — in fact, we can show
everybody right now that public sentiment is still less than 50 percent for impeachment. AMY WALTER: Right. JUDY WOODRUFF: You can see these numbers. In November, it was 47 for, 46 against. It’s about the same, even a few percentage
point pickups, Amy, in opposition to impeachment? AMY WALTER: I don’t know if you remember this,
but when we started talking about this, the number I said I was looking at was the percent
of people who said that they disliked Donald Trump or they disapproved of the job he’s
doing and how many of those folks end up in the I support impeachment. In other words, could Democrats get everybody
who already says, I don’t really like Donald Trump and I don’t like how he’s performing
as president to support impeachment? If so, that would be a majority. But as we have seen in this most recent poll,
you have 52 percent of voters in this poll, of adults in this poll saying they disapprove
of the job this president is doing, but only, what is it, 47 say that they support impeachment. So there’s that. It’s a small group. It’s only 4 or 5 percent, but those are the
folks that Democrats needed to flip, and they never were able to do that. TAMARA KEITH: Yes. And the thing that stands out to me from our
poll is that when we asked them a couple of months ago how likely are you to change your
mind or do you think your mind is pretty well made up, they said, our minds are pretty well
made up. And guess what? Their minds were pretty well made up. AMY WALTER: They were. (CROSSTALK) JUDY WOODRUFF: They were pretty well made
up. AMY WALTER: Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: Well, and we should give credit
where credit is due. This is a joint venture, this poll, Marist
College, “PBS NewsHour” and NPR. TAMARA KEITH: Which is why I said our. (LAUGHTER) JUDY WOODRUFF: I heard you say that. And I’m glad you didn’t let me get away without
identifying whose poll it is. Now let’s talk about, Amy, the debate coming
up and the 2020 candidates. It is a case that there is this labor dispute. We have just reported that Tom Perez, the
chair of the Democratic Party, doing all he can. But it is out of the hands of these candidates
and the party. Clearly, all of us want this debate to take
place. It’s a debate being hosted by the “NewsHour,”
in partnership with Politico, but the candidates have made their position clear. They’re not going to cross a picket line. AMY WALTER: That’s right. They’re not. And for a Democratic primary, there’s absolutely
no way you would see — if there’s any sort of labor dispute, see Democrats going against
that. JUDY WOODRUFF: Right. AMY WALTER: What I do think, for the folks
who would really benefit from having this debate — remember, it’s the last debate of
the year. It’s the second to last one before voters
start voting in Iowa. And for many of these senators, it’s likely
they’re going to be stuck in Washington through this hearing, for the impeachment hearing. We don’t know how long it’s going to be. Maybe it won’t be that long. But this is sort of their last, best opportunity
to get in front of voters before we get into the craziness that is another impeachment
trial, or talk of impeachment, and then moving into Iowa. JUDY WOODRUFF: What have you been thinking
about this, Tam? What do these candidates need to do at this
point? TAMARA KEITH: You know, I think what I’m looking
for, what would be interesting is drawing out some of the differences on something other
than health care. There’s been so much focus on health care. And leading into this debate, there’s been
a lot of back and forth, mostly between Elizabeth Warren and Pete Buttigieg, and mostly it has
been a lot of this fight of radical transparency that we talked about last week. Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden have
been able to sort of hang back. And the “PBS NewsHour”/Marist College poll… JUDY WOODRUFF: Thank you. (LAUGHTER) TAMARA KEITH: … indicates that they are,
in a national poll, right there at the top. They have been very stable. And so one question I have is, have the debates
mattered that much? But here’s another one. Maybe it will. JUDY WOODRUFF: Well, we will see. And, Amy, it was striking to me that, in this
Marist/”PBS NewsHour”/NPR poll, 76 percent of Democrats or Democratic-leaning independents
say that they still have not made up their minds which candidate. AMY WALTER: Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: Is that typical for this stage
of a campaign? AMY WALTER: I think it reflects two things. One, this is — has been a very big field,
and that’s unusual. The second is that this issue of wanting to
find the most electable candidate is really hard thing to do before people actually start
voting. So what once the votes come in, in Iowa and
New Hampshire and Nevada and South Carolina, Americans see those, they see who’s winning,
they see who’s not doing so well, and then their opinions about candidates tend to follow
that. And, traditionally, voters go with a winner,
right? People tend to jump onto bandwagon. But we have also seen, in 2008, there was
an assumption after Obama won Iowa that he was just going to sweep through the rest of
it. JUDY WOODRUFF: And lo and behold, Hillary
Clinton… (CROSSTALK) AMY WALTER: And lo and behold — that’s right
— Hillary Clinton wins New Hampshire, and it was a back and forth all the way through
June. JUDY WOODRUFF: But your point is, they’re
— Democrats — voters struggling their way through, figuring out who’s most likely to
beat Donald Trump, which is what… (CROSSTALK) JUDY WOODRUFF: … in their minds, what is
important. AMY WALTER: Yes. TAMARA KEITH: Yes. When you say electability is the most important
thing, but you don’t know what it means to you or anybody else, then you end up with
a situation with a lot of jostling. JUDY WOODRUFF: Tamara Keith, Amy Walter, thank
you both. And, as we were just discussing, the “PBS
NewsHour”/Politico Democratic debate is Thursday night. JOSEPH BIDEN: Look what’s happening to the
American workers. They’re being stifled. SEN. BERNIE SANDERS: Because we are the only major
country on Earth not to guarantee health care to all people. SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN: They want what it takes
to be part of America’s middle class. PETE BUTTIGIEG (D), Presidential Candidate:
Proposals I’m putting forward would make me the most progressive president in my lifetime. SEN. AMY KLOBUCHAR: People are tired of the extremes
in our politics. TOM STEYER: We have a broken government in
Washington, D.C. ANDREW YANG: What we need is a new voice and
a new set of solutions. JUDY WOODRUFF: India’s Prime Minister Narendra
Modi recently ushered in a new law that would grant preferential treatment to non-Muslim
refugees from India’s neighbors, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh. Modi has argued that the bill protects religious
minorities who are fleeing Muslim nations. However, opponents say that it deliberately
discriminates against Muslims. As Nick Schifrin reports, protests against
the law have been growing. NICK SCHIFRIN: In the world’s largest democracy,
protest is expanding. In 17 cities, from the country’s southern
tip to the capital, New Delhi, demonstrators today rallied against the new citizenship
bill, calling it anti-Muslim and anti-Indian. SADAF FATIMA, Protester: I am proud to be
an Indian, I am proud to be a Muslim, and I am proud to be a protester. WOMAN (through translator): This is not what
we want. India is a secular country. Let it remain secular. NICK SCHIFRIN: On Sunday in New Delhi, the
protests in turned violent. Police fired tear gas and clashed with students,
who accused officers of indiscriminate violence. At least 100 were injured. At one point, protesters torched public buses. There have been five days of discontent, following
the passage of the bill that would expedite citizenship to illegal immigrants from neighboring
countries who fled religious persecution, so long as they aren’t Muslim. Critics call it the latest discriminatory
move by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Hindu nationalist government. It has stripped the special autonomy of Jammu
and Kashmir, the country’s only Muslim-majority region, and cut off the Internet, the longest
ever Internet shutdown in a democracy. The government vows to nationalize a citizenship
registry to weed out what the home minister calls infiltrators. Critics say it targets Muslims, and that Modi
has been targeting Muslims for decades. Back in 2002 in Gujarat state, Modi was chief
minister when deadly religious killed 1,000 people, the vast majority Muslim. Today, anti-government protests spread to
the local government of West Bengal state. The chief minister says she won’t implement
the citizenship law, no matter the consequences. MAMATA BANERJEE, Chief Minister, West Bengal
(through translator): You will bring our government down. Do it. Throw us away. We are fighting for honor, honesty. We may be hungry, but will not surrender before
you. NICK SCHIFRIN: In the Northeastern state of
Assam, protesters are worried the bill would allow too many immigrants from neighboring
Bangladesh. Five people have been killed during demonstrations
there. Yesterday, Modi said violent protesters could
be identified by clothes, called a way to blame all Muslims for the violence. Today, Modi tweeted, calling for peace, unity
and brotherhood. To discuss what all this means for India,
I’m joined by Milan Vaishnav, director of the South Asia program at the Carnegie Endowment
for International Peace. Welcome to the “NewsHour.” MILAN VAISHNAV, Carnegie Endowment for International
Peace: Thank you. NICK SCHIFRIN: Thanks very much. How much of this — give us the context. How much of this is about Narendra Modi and
his party, the BJP, trying to instill a Hindu nationalist agenda? MILAN VAISHNAV: So, Narendra Modi and his
party are an avowedly Hindu nationalist party. And I think the simplest way to understand
that is that they believe that Indian culture is broadly coterminous or synonymous with
Hindu culture, and India’s a country of 1.3 billion people, 80 percent of whom are Hindus,
and so India should wear its Hinduness as a kind of badge of honor. And so this latest move is really in keeping
with an ideological tenant of the BJP that Mr. Modi deeply believes in. NICK SCHIFRIN: Of course, part of the problem
is that India has almost 200 million Muslims. It actually has more Muslims than Pakistan
next door. And we have seen a lot of Muslim protests
beginning with that. And we have also seen a connection between
the two things that our story examined. What is the connection between the citizenship
law that’s just been passed and the citizenship test that the government vows to take nationally? MILAN VAISHNAV: So, what this citizenship
law does is, it grants expedited citizenship to illegal migrants who land up in India who
come from one of three neighboring countries, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan. Now, it gives this pathway to citizenship
for a wide variety of groups, except for one, which are Muslims. Now, why is important, because in one state
in India, there is a process right now of essentially creating a citizens registry. And nearly two million people have been left
off of that list. A large percentage of them are actually Hindu. So, what this bill is going to do, it’s going
to give those people a path to essentially regularizing themselves. But it’s going to leave the Muslim minorities
out. Now, BJP has promised to do this, not just
in this one state, but actually to carry out this national citizens registration across
the entire country. NICK SCHIFRIN: And so we have seen protests
begun by Muslim students, by young Muslims, but spreading. I mean, how much of a threat are these protests
to Modi and the government? MILAN VAISHNAV: Well, this is the biggest
social test I think Modi has faced in his five years of office. But it’s important to note that there are
two sources of the protests. One, you’re seeing not just from Muslim students,
but students around the country and now going beyond just students, people of all ages,
all classes, all religions, who are working that this essentially imposes a religious
test on citizenship. But there’s a second group of protesters — and
this is primarily in India’s Northeast — who are worried that a lot of these folks, many
of whom are coming from neighboring Bangladesh, are going to flood our local culture, they’re
essentially going to stamp out what’s unique about our tribal heritage, about our linguistic
heritage, and so they’re fighting against any immigration. So it’s really important to note that these
protesters in different parts of the country don’t agree on the thing that they’re protesting
about. NICK SCHIFRIN: And yet they are agreeing in
protesting what’s going on. And what is the possibility that they have
the ability to change government policy? MILAN VAISHNAV: So, we have already seen a
suit that’s been filed before the Supreme Court. They are going to determine whether or not
this passes muster with the equal protection clause of the constitution and the part of
the constitution that essentially provides equal citizenship to people, irrespective
of their religious background. Most observers believe the court probably
won’t overturn this law on those grounds. Now, several states who are not controlled
by the BJP have said, you know what, we’re not going to implement this in our state. Now, the way the law has been written and
the rules that actually implement it give the central government the ability to override
that state dissent. NICK SCHIFRIN: And then how much pressure
are these protesters putting on the government in order to backtrack? MILAN VAISHNAV: Well, urban protests are starting
to spread. They’re occurring in rural areas. They started with predominantly Muslim universities. They are spreading to universities across
the country. So, if this is really sustained, that may
force the government to actually respond and make some concessions. NICK SCHIFRIN: Milan Vaishnav of Carnegie
Endowment, thank you very much. MILAN VAISHNAV: Thanks. JUDY WOODRUFF: More than 12 million children
under the age of 5 are in some form of child care here in the U.S. A majority of those children are in home-based
day care. But there’s been a significant decline in
licensed home providers. Special correspondent Cat Wise reports on
a new wave of start-ups aimed at helping parents. CAT WISE: The morning scene at the Ramirez
household is likely a familiar one for many families, two working parents up early, getting
breakfast on the table. Child care has been a big challenge for 32-year-old
Reyna Ramirez, who is a full-time medical assistant. She raised her two older children as a single
parent. Her community, Moreno Valley, California,
about 60 miles outside of Los Angeles, is one of the country’s many child care deserts,
where there are three or more children for every licensed child care slot. Ramirez managed to find spots for her first
two children, now 12 and 6, at local day care centers, but she didn’t like leaving them
there. REYNA RAMIREZ, Mother: Back then, I didn’t
feel like I had too many child care options. It was just so many kids, the centers were
so big, so I felt like they couldn’t keep an eye on all the kids at the same time. CAT WISE: The care was also expensive, $350
a week, nearly half her salary at the time. According to the U.S. Department of Health
and Human Services, child care that costs families more than 7 percent of their income
is considered unaffordable. Personal nannies and child care centers, where
overhead costs are high, are often the least affordable options for families. Ramirez and her husband wanted to find a different
care arrangement for their 1.5-year-old daughter, Jovina. Last march, she learned about a new app called
WeeCare that helps connect families with licensed and vetted home-based care providers in their
area. She now walks Jovina a short distance to a
day care, where she’s paying about $500 less a month and drop-offs are a lot easier. Tonetta Riley is one of some 600 child care
providers in three states, California, Minnesota, and Illinois, who have partnered with WeeCare
since its launch in 2017. In addition to helping families and providers
connect via the app, the company also offers services for day care owners, including licensing
support, billing, and tax assistance. WeeCare takes a percentage of the monthly
tuition parents pay through the app, usually around 10 percent. TONETTA RILEY, Child Care Provider: I don’t
have to worry about trying to get payment from parents and things of that nature. All I have to do is just focus on teaching
them and helping them become good, healthy citizens. CAT WISE: Riley used to work at a day care,
where she made just $10 an hour and her family struggled financially. That’s a common problem for child care workers
in the U.S., where average wages are about $25,000 a year. But Riley says she’s no longer struggling. TONETTA RILEY: My income has tripled. I get a lot more business with WeeCare than
I would get on my own. CAT WISE: WeeCare is not the only start-up
focused on the home-based child care market. Companies like Wonderschool and MyVillage
have a similar focus. All have eyes on the prize, the U.S. child
care industry’s $47 billion of annual revenue. JESSICA CHANG, CEO, WeeCare: I want early
child care to not be an issue anymore. CAT WISE: Jessica Chang is the CEO and co-founder
of WeeCare, which is based in a start-up-meets-day care office in Venice Beach, California. Chang started the company after having a difficult
time finding care for her first child. JESSICA CHANG: We want to increase the supply
of home day cares, because we actually think that is the solution for early child care. But we also want to improve the quality. The state of California really licenses for
safety. That’s the number one thing. CAT WISE: Not quality. JESSICA CHANG: Not for quality, exactly. We definitely want you to be safe, but how
do we actually make sure that the day care is what parents actually want and need for
their kids? CAT WISE: She says WeeCare ensures quality
by vetting providers for experience, among other things. And caregivers who utilize age-appropriate
curriculum provided by the company and receive positive parent feedback are given higher
ratings on the app. Chang also wants to help families find care
they can afford. JESSICA CHANG: A lot of preschools charge
$1,000 to $2,000 month, while home day cares actually are a lot more affordable. They’re about 30 to 40 percent cheaper than
preschools. CAT WISE: But even those lower rates are a
stretch for some. BRIANNA BRAUN, Mother: It’s been beyond stressful. CAT WISE: Brianna Braun is a 29-year-old single
mother in Van Nuys, California. She recently returned to her job as a manager
at Best Buy after giving birth to her son Kyrie. She says she tried to find care for him on
WeeCare and other child care apps, but the providers near her were out of her price range. BRIANNA BRAUN: For his age, they were ranging
anywhere between $250 a week, up to — I think the most expensive one I found was $400 a
week. If I were to pay $250 a week, that would be
almost half of my salary a month. And then, you know, on top of rent, utilities,
food, if he needs anything, it’s definitely just not workable for me. CAT WISE: Child care is now a daily scramble
for Braun. She’s out the door most mornings before 5:00
a.m., so she can drop Kyrie off with a friend, an hour out of her way, and get to work on
time. She makes $33,000 a year, but was told she
doesn’t qualify for government child care assistance. BRIANNA BRAUN: I just feel like they should
have more subsidy programs, or even day cares that offer, like, low-income. CAT WISE: Michael Olenick agrees. MICHAEL OLENICK, CEO, Child Care Resource
Center: We have about 1.2 million kids who are eligible for a voucher program, but we
only have enough funding for about 300,000. CAT WISE: He’s the head of the Child Care
Resource Center in Los Angeles, one of 60 nonprofits around the state that provide child
care subsidies and resources. Olenick says the new wave of start-ups may
be helpful for some, but they don’t address underlying market realities. MICHAEL OLENICK: It works in certain parts
of Los Angeles, probably works in certain parts of Miami and New York. But in San Bernardino County or rural Iowa,
it’s not going to work. Parents can’t afford the true cost. You can’t charge enough money in most of the
working-class communities, lower-income communities, to make it worth your while. CAT WISE: But for those who have been helped
by the technology, life is a bit easier these days. WeeCare plans to expand to 15 states in 2020. For the “PBS NewsHour,” I’m Cat Wise in Moreno
Valley, Los Angeles. JUDY WOODRUFF: Wyoming is the nation’s least
populous state, but it ranks near the top in per capita gun ownership. It’s also home to the nation’s most comprehensive
collection of historical firearms. Jeffrey Brown recently traveled to the renovated
Firearms Museum in Cody. This story is part of our ongoing series on
arts and culture, Canvas. JEFFREY BROWN: There’s the old and strange. ASHLEY HLEBINSKY, Curator, Cody Firearms Museum:
That is called the duck’s foot pistol, but it’s basically — it’s a volley gun. JEFFREY BROWN: A volley gun? ASHLEY HLEBINSKY: Yes. So it would all fire at once. JEFFREY BROWN: The new and controversial: ASHLEY HLEBINSKY: An assault rifle has a definable
term. JEFFREY BROWN: And some 7,000 firearms of
all kinds in between. The Cody Firearms Museum was created in the
1970s, mostly with gun enthusiasts in mind. ASHLEY HLEBINSKY: This looks at the post-World
War II period. JEFFREY BROWN: But after a brand-new $12 million
renovation, says curator Ashley Hlebinsky, it can now tell a broader and necessary story. ASHLEY HLEBINSKY: Firearms have been integral
to understanding really history, culture, technology and society for centuries. And so, having a Firearms Museum is really
a way that you can use those artifacts as a vehicle to talk about other topics. JEFFREY BROWN: That includes guns as weapons
of war, for sports and hunting, as innovative technology. ASHLEY HLEBINSKY: Henry Ford visited Winchester
right before he built his Highland Park factory in Detroit, and he took what he learned at
Winchester and applied that to the assembly line that he’s become famous for. But you don’t necessarily hear that firearms
part of the story. And that’s gotten lost, definitely. JEFFREY BROWN: Housed in the Buffalo Bill
Center of the West, the firearms collection is one of five museums of art and history,
including the story of Buffalo Bill Cody himself, the legendary soldier and hunter turned showman,
who in 1896 helped establish this small town in Northwest Wyoming, a deeply conservative
state, where guns have always been part of life. The Buffalo Bill Center asks visitors to check
visible firearms. ALAN SIMPSON, Former U.S. Senator: I don’t
think there’s a guy in this community or a family in this community that doesn’t have
a gun in their home. JEFFREY BROWN: That includes former Senator
Alan Simpson, who grew up and, now 88, still lives in Cody. ALAN SIMPSON: There would be no history in
America without the gun. I mean, you can gasp, and choke, and fall
over on your head if you want to with that statement I just made. But, I mean, without a gun, the pioneers would
have had nothing but an axe, and fighting off the elements and indigenous people. All of that is real. All of it — you can’t rewrite history. JEFFREY BROWN: But I could imagine people
saying, OK, that’s all true, but a museum to celebrate guns? ALAN SIMPSON: We don’t sell it. We tell the history. We’re not in the celebratory thing down here,
where we have a big sign, come on in and cherish guns with us. That’s bull (EXPLETIVE DELETED). This is the history of America, which is guns. APRIL JONES, Artist: I was afraid that it
was going to glorify firearms. JEFFREY BROWN: Artist April Jones, who lives
and works nearby, is a much newer resident of Cody, one who came with different politics
and from a very different place, the San Francisco Bay Area. APRIL JONES: A lot of my friends back there
would be quite offended that there was a museum about guns. JEFFREY BROWN: But Jones is impressed with
the museum’s approach. APRIL JONES: I think that’s a nice balance
to understand that, OK, you have got your sports shooters on the one hand that are competing
in Olympic events for target shooting and kind of stuff, but then you have got people
who are really living in turmoil and destruction because of firearms, too. And I think that’s more the conversation that
our country should be having, is, it’s a tool. In what cases can it be used properly? And how can we stop it from being used improperly? JEFFREY BROWN: There’s no denying the fascination
many have with guns. Visitors from all over the world, here from
the Netherlands, come to try them out at the nearby Cody Firearms Experience. General manager Paul Brock knows it’s the
movies that often drive people his way. PAUL BROCK, Cody Firearms Museum: When people
say, I don’t know what to shoot, we will say, OK, well, let’s do — what do you want, Johnny
Depp, John Wayne or John Wick? JEFFREY BROWN: We got to try all three, a
1790s Indian trade musket, an 1873 Colt single-action revolver, and a modern AR-15. PAUL BROCK: The oldest firearm, you did the
best shooting with. So, nice job. JEFFREY BROWN: I’m an old-fashioned guy, maybe. (LAUGHTER) PAUL BROCK: Yes, there you go. JEFFREY BROWN: The only shooting at the Cody
Firearms Museum is with simulators to teach safety and illustrate different gun mechanisms. Here, they aim for something else, such as
getting definitions right. It says, “These terms are used frequently,
but rarely in the correct ways.” ASHLEY HLEBINSKY: Correct. JEFFREY BROWN: As in, just what is meant by
an assault weapon? ASHLEY HLEBINSKY: If you are trying to create
legislation for or against firearms, or whether you’re trying to regulate these things, you
have to be precise in the wording of that legislation. So it’s important to have the historical foundation
of what those words mean in order to actually make sure you’re talking about the right thing
that you’re trying to do in politics. JEFFREY BROWN: There’s also this, a large
mural originally made for the cover of “TIME” magazine last year showing several hundred
people across the great American gun divide. And not every museum visitor loves it. ASHLEY HLEBINSKY: We have had a couple of
people on all sides say, this is really divisive. Why would you put this up? JEFFREY BROWN: And what do you say to them? ASHLEY HLEBINSKY: It’s a very divisive debate. And this actually represents equal footing. And it’s OK to love it. It’s OK to hate it. We want to encourage people to think really
long and hard about firearms to make their own conclusions about firearms. And this is an opportunity in the museum to
feel something. JEFFREY BROWN: For the “PBS NewsHour,” I’m
Jeffrey Brown at the Cody, Wyoming, Firearms Museum. JUDY WOODRUFF: Seventy-five years ago today,
one of the most savage battles of World War II began. John Yang has our look at today’s commemoration
of the Battle of the Bulge. JOHN YANG: Memorial trumpets sounded on the
solemn ground where U.S. soldiers held off the Nazi war machine’s last gasp. In the forests of Bastogne, Belgium, American
veterans of the Battle of the Bulge received a hero’s welcome. U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper: MARK ESPER, U.S. Defense Secretary: On this
ground, where the outcome of the Battle of the Bulge hung in the balance, American troops
fought and forged an incredible victory that assured Hitler’s defeat. JOHN YANG: At dawn 75 years ago today, the
German army launched an assault on advancing Allied forces in Belgium and Luxembourg; 1,000
Nazi tanks and 200,000 troops tried to break the Allied line and nearly did, creating a
bulge as they pushed defenses. Badly outnumbered U.S. forces bore the brunt. For more than a month, they battled both the
Nazis and the bitter cold with meager supplies and low ammunition. At one point, the Germans demanded surrender. The now legendary response from American Brigadier
General Anthony McAuliffe, a defiant, “Nuts.” His troops were ultimately reinforced by a
soldiers led by General George Patton. Together, they fended off the Nazis and dealt
them a paralyzing defeat, but at a brutal cost; 10,000 Americans died, the costliest
battle in the entire war. Today, performers honored their sacrifice. Artificial snow fell amid the day’s cold rain,
a reminder of the battle’s frigid conditions. One veteran of the battle, 96-year-old Malcolm
Buck Marsh, recounted his experience. MALCOLM “BUCK” MARSH, Battle of the Bulge
Veteran: It was in blizzard conditions. A Belgian lady with a shawl on came out and
had two mugs of hot chicken soup for each of us, best meal I have had, I guess, ever. JOHN YANG: Marsh and the other veterans laid
roses at a memorial for their fallen comrades. The once young soldiers, now among the last
remaining survivors of the men who held this line, stood for the national anthem, a salute
to and from the greatest generation. For the “PBS NewsHour,” I’m John Yang. JUDY WOODRUFF: So remarkable to see the veterans. And we thank them for their service. And that’s the “NewsHour” for tonight. I’m Judy Woodruff. Join us online and again here tomorrow evening. For all of us at the “PBS NewsHour,” thank
you, and we’ll see you soon.

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