Our "Meet the Candidates" series continues with Republican gubernatorial candidate Tim Pawlenty.
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(00:00:00) From Minnesota Public Radio. I'm Greta Cunningham. The Minnesota Supreme Court is promising a ruling soon on a lawsuit filed over absentee ballots the court heard arguments this morning on a request by Minnesota Democrats that new absentee ballots be mailed out in the wake of senator. Paul wellstones. Death Republican US Senate candidate Norm Coleman is campaigning today in North Western and Southwestern Minnesota Coleman told supporters in Moorhead. He's the candidate who offers a plan for the future since restarting his campaign yesterday. Coleman has focused on communities outside the Twin Cities. He says that's an important part of his message all too often. I think a lot of politicians forget that there's life outside the metro area. I have spent I've been here at least 10 times to Moorhead by 10 times in the course of this campaign. So I went back to where I've been I work the same way. I was working letting (00:00:49) minnesotans know that everybody deserves to be represented in this state. I will represent (00:00:53) everybody. Coleman says he expects his campaign to get a boost from visits later this week by President Bush and vice president Cheney. St. Paul's School Superintendent, Pat Harvey says the passage of a lefty rendering referendum is needed to maintain current education programs. The district is Seeking a tax increase on the November 5th ballot that would raise 18 million dollars a year for four years School leaders have cut 32 million dollars from The District budget the past two years at due to Rising costs and less than expected State funding Harvey says she's disappointed that mayor Randy Kelly and the st. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce are opposing the referendum, but she says she also understands their positions the forecast for Minnesota today calls for partly to mostly sunny skies, but cold temperature Statewide highs today only reaching 25 to 35 degrees right now in Duluth. It's fair and 28 Marshall fair and 25 in the Twin Cities partly sunny and 33 degrees. That's a news update. I'm Greta Cunningham Minnesota Public Radio members received 241 ticket offers with their memberships to learn more about this month's offers or to join click on Minnesota Public Radio dot-org. (00:01:58) It's X-Men. Now past one o'clock. Good afternoon, and welcome back to a special Expanded Edition of midday. I'm Gary eichten (00:02:11) race for the US Senate is back in full swing in the dfl party now has a candidate to replace the late Paul wellstone in (00:02:19) that race last night the party officially nominated former Minnesota senator former vice president former ambassador to Japan Walter Mondale to replace Paul wellstone on next week's Minnesota election ballot polls indicate that most minnesotans know the name Walter Mondale, but he has not stood for an election in Minnesota since 1984 when he lost the presidential race to Ronald Reagan. So today as part of our meet the candidates series Walter Mondale has come by our Studios to talk about his stand on the issues facing voters this year and also to take your questions. If you have a question for the Democrats candidate for the u.s. Senate Walter Mondale, we invite you to give us a call at six five one 2276 thousand 6512276 thousand outside the Twin Cities are Toll-free line is 1-800-218-4243 or thank you for coming in today. (00:03:14) Thank you so much for having (00:03:15) me. Now. First of all, just in the interest of disclosure. We should note that you served on the Minnesota Public Radio board for several years, but it's very resigned on Tuesdays. That is correct. Okay. Did you have any second thoughts whatsoever about entering this race after you talk to the wellstones (00:03:34) if I could just start a little earlier in that question. I was at a reception in support of Paul wellstone when the awful news arrived and shortly after that. We started hearing from people about what are we going to do now? And then the next morning I met with David wellstone and some other members of The Campaign and they asked me if I would run and follow the wellstone Legacy in the United States Senate. I didn't say yes quite but I went home and I talked to my wife and we decided that it had to be done and that we wanted to do it and it you know, it's it's it's almost impossible to describe the process that you have to go through. I think we're all going through it because here we are in the midst of grief one of the worst personal human tragedies in Minnesota History. And in almost an unseemly way we have to talk politics and get ready for the election that comes within two or three days. I want to do this. I want to carry on the legacy of my friend Paul wellstone and Sheila and Joan and I are committed to this and so here I am but what (00:05:23) changed I mean obviously Senator well stones death is the primary factor here, but beyond that back 12 years ago already. You said people wanted you to run them and they were people putting the arm on you and you said no it's time for different people to come (00:05:39) forward. That's right. And and if under the same circumstances, I would give the same answer today, but the circumstances are not the same in at least two respects one. Is that a wonderful United States Senator? Was killed in the crash and there's only five days to go who will represent his point of view in this election. How will his legacy be continued? How will the people of Minnesota be given a choice? That's a real choice and just as a and very importantly to me, how are these issues that our nation confronts International instability terrorism The Stumbling economy the problem of Ethics in business and ethics and politics these other issues and and I felt that I had a responsibility to duty this time for these reasons to seek the Senate (00:06:48) the other candidates say they want to a series of debates in these last five days before the election so that minnesotans really can. Kind of compare are all the candidates. What's your thought on that? Are you going to participate in a lot of debates about (00:07:03) what I've said is I'll have a debate but before that I want to go around the state. I want to have a chance to listen to minnesotans now about how they feel on these issues and then I will debate and I've authorized my assistants to pursue that and but by all means let's have a (00:07:27) debate but why not why just one (00:07:30) because I want to get around the state and see the people of Minnesota. I've been in this campaign 12 hours now and this is a big state and they've got a right to be heard and then I'm more than willing to debate (00:07:47) Norm Coleman. The Republican candidate said that he has been traveling around the state for the last two years and is fully aware of what minnesotans are concerned. Out what the issues are and that that's the reason he should be elected on Tuesday. Well, I was born in (00:08:05) Minnesota. I've lived here my whole life. I was married here. We rewrite our family here. I went to school here. I was in public life here. I've lived here almost all my life. And I know what's going on in Minnesota. But this is the current political campaign and I want to actually see people and I want them to talk to me and hear from them what they've got to say. I think that is elementary and necessary in a responsible campaign. (00:08:40) Let me just touch briefly here on some of the major issues of the day before we get to our callers here that that the candidates for the US Senate have been talking about this year number one if you had been in the Senate, how would you have voted on that resolution? Rising the use of military force against Iraq (00:08:59) I would have voted the same way as Paul wellstone and said that last night in my speech wellstone supported the Levin Amendment, which I think is the right position it recognizes the seriousness of the challenge of Saddam Hussein's brutal leadership. It demands inspection and destruction of those weapons. It calls for Authority from the security Council to require those tough inspections and destruction and it authorizes Force through that resolution if Saddam Hussein refuses, and there's a backup provision that in the event the UN does not grant that Authority the president can come back to the Congress which will not (00:09:54) adjourn for (00:09:57) Additional Authority Under the then (00:09:59) circumstances if the UN fails to reach an agreement on a resolution or looks more and more like they're they may not reach any kind of an agreement and you were in the Senate right now president comes back and says Okay. I want to go. How would you vote? Well, (00:10:14) first of all, I'm not so sure that's the case. I think we're getting very close to a resolution of this issue. I think the negotiation I read about this morning sounds like they're getting close and I would hope and pray that that's what happens because I think were far stronger with the backing of the United Nations far stronger in those environments because end it's the world approaching Saddam Hussein if that cannot work then the second step has got to be to do what this presence father did and that is a range of Coalition around the All to join with us in an effort to squeeze Saddam Hussein and only as the last resort working together should there be force and there's another reason for this the Saddam Hussein has yet to develop nuclear weapons. No one says he has those things now. So we have a little time we got to keep maximum pressure on Saddam Hussein, but we shouldn't go it alone and and lose the support that would flow through other processes (00:11:34) Democrats have criticized the big federal tax cut that was passed last year. You criticized the the tax cut last night in the US Senate. Would you introduce a resolution or legislation to repeal that tax cut (00:11:48) that tax cut cuts a trillion dollars of federal revenues. It is already. Alton the federal budget from what was an estimated five trillion dollar Surplus over the next 10 years to what is now a two hundred about a 200 billion dollar deficit this year. And the way the economy is going it could be deeper and larger through the out here. So it's already a disaster. The second thing is it's highly unfair forty percent of the tax cut goes to the top one percent of American earners and many of wealthy Americans have said this is a way too much for a certain bracket from about I think something like sixty thousand to a hundred and twenty thousand they get no tax cuts at all. So what I would like to do is repeal the summit least some of the tax cut at the top and divert that to moderate income. Americans and maybe and either put it to reduce the deficit or use it to reduce the payroll tax the payroll tax that really bites everybody it bites the average family regardless of family size or anything. It's it's the most regressive tax cut we have and if we could bring some relief there it would be good for the economy because it would all be spent immediately (00:13:21) Social Security and other big issue in the Senate campaign this year. The debate has mostly focused on whether to have individual accounts within the social security system or not. Sometimes referred to as partial privatization others have argued as did Senator wellstone that that's that's not a good approach. And in fact some some minor adjustments would might very well be enough of the economy continues to grow seems like no matter what approach is taken. A fairly huge amount of money is going to be needed though, either to finance transition to some kind of private plan or to shore up the existing program. Would you agree with that? I'm very much (00:14:08) opposed to the so-called privatization of Social Security. I believe that Social Security is one of the most successful and important programs that we have it it's idea is that all senior citizens should be provided not wealth but a minimum amount that's enough that they can count on for some security in their old age that program has really worked and it can work in the future even now they say it'll be twenty thirty five or more before they'll be any trouble with it. And I believe the idea of privatization is manifestly dangerous if if we had put This Social Security money in the private stock market when its Advocates were proposing it. We know from the stock market statistics that about half that money would be gone. Now. We can't make retirement social security subject to such unpredictable vagaries Social Security ought to be something that you can really count on now you have to pay for it. And in fact a few years ago a law was passed that funded Social Security, but with these Rising deficits that they're bringing about the build-up of financial reserves that was going to be available when the baby boom. Boomers retired is being chewed up by what paying more bonds because of deficit spending. So we've got to get back on the Sounder track and that Sound economy and a lot of things but put me down solidly for that Social Security program, but longer (00:16:03) term setting aside the privatization argument just let's assume we just have what we have some point down the road more. It seems like more money is going to be needed. Would you (00:16:11) support I just said that (00:16:14) where does that money come from? (00:16:15) I think we ought to rebuild the surpluses by stronger economy and by much more care and avoiding things like that huge tax cut that skewed us away from surpluses now into deficits and secondly, I've been around a long time and I've watched these predictions about the dire problems the Social Security and almost all of them did not come true. We there now saying 2035 and that's just marginal problems at that time. So, I think the problem is exaggerated and I think the solutions over that time can be handled easily. (00:16:53) Well, let's get some listener questions our This hour or special Expanded Edition of midday is the dfl Party's candidate for the u.s. Senate Walter Mondale. He was officially nominated by the party last night to replace Paul wellstone on next Tuesday's election. Ballot Pam. Your first go ahead, please. Yes. Mr. Mondale. Do you have a pro-abortion litmus test for appointing (00:17:15) judges? I believe very strongly in choice for women. I think this issue is so personal to each family and to each mother that it is cannot be handled by politicians and Outsiders moreover. The Constitution of the United States says that this is a private matter. So I strongly favored that and I would not support a judge who said he was going to oppose the constitution (00:17:54) even if he were otherwise eminently qualified for the (00:17:58) position that such a basic question that I believe we have to demand that they be right on (00:18:03) that President Bush says he's upset that a lot of his judicial nominations have not been acted on by the by the Senate and has proposed a plan under which the Senate would agree to vote. As I understand it within six months on any nomination you think that's a good idea. No, (00:18:23) I think that each judge. Don't forget that the process of selecting a judge is a shared responsibility. The president does not pick a judge the president nominates a judge and then under the Constitution of the United States the Senate advises and consents. In other words. It's equally as important responsibility to the members of the Senate as it is to the president and that is particularly true with judges because federal judges are there for life and I think the Senate that certainly the position I took when I was a Senator should reserve the right to look at each candidate and decide whether they want them or not the I know when I was in the Senate I probably voted. Most of the Nixon nominees some I didn't find acceptable but most of them like judge burger and jug touch blackmun, I was proud to vote for I confirmed voted to confirm most of his nominees. So it's it I don't think it's a black-and-white case each Senators got to use his best judgment, but the Senate has responsibilities just as the president does (00:19:43) William your next go ahead, please. Good afternoon, Senator. How are (00:19:49) you? Doing? Fine? Yeah, what is your (00:19:52) stay? I'm calling from Wisconsin by the way, (00:19:54) and what is your stand that's what the Second Amendment right to bear arms. Well, my position is that the constitution allows reasonable control of firearms. We just had this awful sniper nightmare in Maryland, and we know that there are ways of getting a signature of each rifle and we could keep a catalog of the names so that if they're used in things like this we can quickly search for the culprit and it would be in the police have wanted that law enforcement tool for a long time. I don't see how that interferes with anybody that gun was a u.s. Sniper knock off that this guy was able to buy in the market. I don't see why reasonable. Protections of that kind are out of order at all. I'm a Hunter. I enjoy hunting. I would never allow anybody to take our guns away for that purpose, but there is a very reasonable legitimate law enforcement reason here that became painfully evident again these past few weeks. (00:21:17) What about the argument though that especially in terms of handguns that people if they're allowed access to weapons can protect themselves not in the sniper case, but it affords them the opportunity to protect themselves when law enforcement just can't do (00:21:35) it. I think there's a lot more evidence that the random availability of handguns for people that shouldn't have them miners people that have had law violation records people that have had emotional problems in the rest create far more danger than that would allow secondly the idea say a Minnesota substituting for the police by allowing permitting and encouraging our citizens to all walk around with disguised handguns and defend themselves from each other in that way I think is anyway I couldn't support it (00:22:29) Tony your question for Walter Mondale. Hi. Mr. Mondale. The US House of Representatives has passed five. Pro-life bills at the Senate has refused to take up such as the not such as the abortion non-discrimination act which would protect Catholic hospital from having to perform abortions. We use the port current Senate leadership and blocking these mainstream pro-life (00:22:49) bills. I am I support the Constitution United States that makes this matter a matter of private choice and I will continue to (00:22:58) do so Let's prescription drugs another issue that has been talked about a lot seems to come up each time. There's an election and so far no prescription drug legislation to speak of his past the Congress. How do you how do you see yourself approaching that issue? Do you support the idea of kind of a modest start to a program that or is it does it need to be a full comprehensive approach to prescription drugs or perhaps Medicare can't afford any prescription drug benefit. (00:23:39) I very strongly support the provision of prescription drugs under Medicare in other words as as a part of the Medicare program. We now provide help under Medicare you can hospital and professional help with with so-called gap insurance and and There was a loophole there is a there was an Omission in the original law that needs to be corrected and that is that it doesn't provide for pharmaceuticals. And since the adoption of the Medicare act the importance of pharmaceuticals has increased dramatically in other words. They're far more efficacious drugs across the broader range of illnesses than there were 50 years ago. So we senior citizens need those drugs, but at the same time the cost of these drugs has been soaring and seniors don't have the money to pay for it. So we have it. I think an emergency with all kinds of decent fellow Americans who need this for their health and who fact maybe saving us all money by taking medication rather than becoming sick. Who can't do it now in the last election? Both candidates promised that we would pass prescription drugs assistance. The president has come up with a very weak bill that really doesn't do much at all and doesn't include it in the way. I'm talking in Medicare Paul wellstone supported a strong bill. I would support the same bill and it does it does not provide total coverage for pharmaceuticals it some formula. So nobody nobody that I know of saying 100% I do not have the figures in my mind right now, but that is definitely the direction in which we should go. I'll bet you that more people are concerned about that issue than almost any others (00:25:49) in terms of a point of compromise. Would you support a program which only would provide a prescription drug benefit to say low-income seniors as opposed to all Medicare. (00:26:01) defense well, I don't like the idea of means testing because it turns a program with dignity as when everybody gets a social security check and it doesn't It's not welfare. Everybody can be in Medicare and it's not welfare. If you're on Medicare, it doesn't mean that you're poor necessarily. It just means you're an American and you're over 65. There's a lot of dignity to connected to that if Pharmaceuticals only go to people under some kind of welfare definition. Then it changes the whole nature in the spirit of it. And I think I think that we can afford this we've got to afford it. We may have to take it in steps, but let's do it right (00:26:50) Wade your question, please. Yes, I thank you for taking my call. I was wondering if you're elected to Senate. Would you support increased educational spending for military personnel as well as extending health care benefit to National Guard or Reserve (00:27:07) troops. I think the answer is yes. I have not looked at that issue for a while, but I feel very Strongly about our service men and women and about our Guardsmen and our reserves meant they mean so much to our country. And in these days of the risk of Terror, we're reminded again every time I go to an airport about what all of you mean to us and I believe that that that part of that service ought to include the traditional benefits that you're referring to and I have to say I haven't looked at the issue recently but in principle, I (00:27:48) support that broader defense spending. Do you think the it's gone up substantially here since 911 you think we're now at about the right level for defense spending should it be increased further should it be scaled back? I know this (00:28:02) that whatever we need for our defense. That we really need we have to do it in this day of Terror in this day of risk. We can't take chances with that. But the question of what we need deserves a lot of debate and you know, there's no question that we needed in increased costs are going up and so on and but we need to be prudent at the same time that if I'm elected. I will look into that issue. I couldn't give you an exact answer right (00:28:38) now. You think the Administration has struck the right balance in terms of fighting the war on terror struck the right balance between protecting civil liberties and National Security. (00:28:49) Well, I'm a little troubled by that. I think that we have to be very tough at home. I think that the bureau and the police agencies and the others we have to look for out for risks and but at the same time I think that we can do a better job of Defending ourselves here at home and abroad when we at the same time pay careful attention to the principles of Justice. There's an idea around that Justice is weak that if you follow Justice in the Constitution somehow Americans are more exposed to Danger. I think there's a lot of arguments in a lot of good experience that teaches us that American law just law is very very powerful and we can do everything we To do at home with our citizens within that law. We have other problems in Espionage in Terror that requires it particularly overseas and sometimes even here requires different standards, but we've got a court in Washington Especial foreign intelligence surveillance court that deals with those problems. And so what I want to do is be tough, but also be cognizant of doing it in a way that sustains American Justice and Liberty that is what has always served as an America. That's one of the reasons were the strongest Nation on Earth and I hope we'll continue to do so (00:30:37) you were instrumental in the 1970s in essentially cracking down on abuses by us intelligence agencies the whole church committee or the church committee hearings and so on so forth there, are those who say That those efforts went too far and essentially handcuffed the FBI CIA and so on over the years to the point where they were not able to effectively counter the threat posed by Al Qaeda. (00:31:06) There have been a number of FBI directors that have said that our changes helped the FBI and there have been a number of CEI CIA directors have said the same thing. This is the work that we did was not about weakening the bureau. It was about stopping the bureau from being political and about preventing the bureau usually operating under orders from the political leaders from intruding into the life of Americans based not on any violation or risk, but on it just on a general idea of that. They were but we don't have to go into it. But I think the net result was to strengthen the bureau (00:31:56) Carl your question for Walter Mondale. Good afternoon. Mr. Mondale. It's a pleasure to talk with you. Thank you. I understand according to Camus TV last night. They reported the number one cause and u.s. To death is malnutrition. Wonder if the elected if you do you have a plan to attack this (00:32:17) problem. There are several programs around now that are designed to help people who are are facing or could face problems, unacceptable problems like that. Some of them are distributed through like the school lunch program School breakfast program that affects children there are food stamp kind of kinds of programs and others. We are a nation of great food bounty. We produce far more than we eat here at home. It is one of the great wonderful advantages of America that we have this abundance and I think we should always be searching for ways to match that Miracle with American needs (00:33:12) farm bill passed this this year designed to help Minnesota an American farmers in general. It's been Criticized for being way too expensive no real reforms to speak of in that bill. Do you agree? (00:33:26) I would have supported the bill what happened here? I think has to be remembered a few years ago. They got rid of a good Farm program, which kept more balanced and allowed the market to support Farmers better than it does now. So then when the international markets were disappeared and didn't I early disappear but became there was less demand overseas. Suddenly American farmers were facing extinction and there was a need to act and provide some assistance in to get them through this. I think I would have voted for it (00:34:16) terms of global trade and the what's your position on that lot of critics again suggesting that we the little guy here in America be it a worker farmer is is getting hammered in this pursuit of global trade agree. (00:34:41) My view is that it is impossible for America to just to close off its borders and that it would be foolish for us to do. So, we are the most competitive nation in the world. We have more things that are wanted by more people. We have better agriculture more abundance than any other Nation our science and Technologies. So Superior to any other nations just go around Minnesota and look at these where our jobs are coming from Medtronic st. Jude Northwest Airlines cargo down the list. We have a real stake in an open market and if we close this idea that you'll sell but you won't buy doesn't work. However, I'm not a sucker and I've had some experience with this we have a right to expect countries that market in the United States to grant us equal access to their markets. It's two-way street and we should be negotiating vigorously with these countries to insist upon and we have anti-dumping laws, which we should keep which I support that should be used when foreign products and seek entry into the United States subsidized by their government. In other words. We need to be realistic. We need to our goal must be open trade, but we must be realistic about it and we must be vigilant in demanding fair and full access to their markets (00:36:29) President Bush approved some legislation, which was Fine to help protect the steel industry which was getting hammered by by Foreign competition presumably at least somewhat good news for Iron Range workers in Minnesota, but bad news for a lot of other manufacturers and businesses in the state. Do you think that was a wise decision on the president's part? (00:36:54) I think I'm writing this. I need to look into this. I think that it did not extend to or and that it permitted slab steel to come in. So in a sense and since it was adopted, there's been what a hundred or two hundred of exclusions made in it. So it's a it's a it's a step that didn't do much and that's why what I just talked about in the earlier question. I answer that I think is a better response to this (00:37:35) problem NAFTA. Would you have supported that had you been in the Senate? Yes Cathy your question, please. Hi. I have a question or a comment than two questions. First of all, if I were Norm Coleman, I'd be afraid to debate you because you were such an elegant speaker and you're so knowledgeable intelligent on the issue. I understand that channel 5 is having a debate on Friday evening at seven. Will you be participating in that debate and then I have an aunt who is concerned about voting for even though she says she's a Democrat because she says he is too old. He will probably die in office or have a heart attack and that he has old ways and like you to speak about your health and I will hang up and listen. Thank you. (00:38:12) Well, I don't I don't want it to be anybody to be afraid of me and is particularly in these days when we're in morning when our whole state all minnesotans are in grief. This is a time to discuss our issues calmly to bear. Ourselves with decorum and I will do so I've agreed and said that I will have a debate. My staff is pursuing that possibility. I also want to spend these next few days talking to minnesotans around the state and then then we will proceed to the debate on my health. My health is very good. I just had a discussion with the health reporter in the Minneapolis Tribune today and there I think they'll be a story on it tomorrow. I've had some problems but they're under control my doctors tell me that I am in good shape to run and served by in the for the full term and I thought I really think that my years or something that helped me that that experience. Has gotten me into a position where I'm from the first day, I can serve the people of Minnesota. You know, I know the Senate I know our state I know the rules of the Senate I will be a part of the leadership and I know Minister said what minnesotans want and I'm in a position right off to help so I feel very good about (00:40:01) it. You see this as a one-term campaign, is that what you're running (00:40:07) for one full term (00:40:09) and not not the are you I suppose I should ask. Are you making some kind of a pledge that you will seek a sound? I'll (00:40:17) make a pledge right now. (00:40:18) Would you prefer had you that this were a two-year Arrangement that you serve a couple of years and then have they'd be another election 2004 once we get beyond the the the wellstone, but (00:40:30) I think sick your six year terms. Make sense. I've been down there. It's a very complex and challenging body. The issues are very complex the relationships and the rest that you have to put together to accomplish big things take such time that although two years sounds like a long time. I think the founding fathers were very wise to provide for six year term as long as it is in the (00:41:01) Constitution. Rob your question for Walter Mondale. Yes, Senator Mondale, I'm of the generation for whom Social Security is supposedly going to run out and I was wondering I understand that Social Security tax is not taken out of income above 68,000. Would you be willing to push for legislation that would remove the the cap on that so that income above 68,000 has social Security tax taken out of it too. Actually, I think the limit is about 86,000. I think the numbers are reversed and I there's an upper cap there. Yeah, I need to take a look (00:41:42) at that before. I give a specific answer. Okay (00:41:45) fuel efficiency standards. A lot of environmentalists have said this would be a great way to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and and also conserve energy frankly. Would you favor mandating higher fuel efficiency standards for vehicles? (00:42:03) I I believe that that's one of the many ways that we have to become less dependent on foreign energy, you know, there's a there's different Technologies for engines that dramatically reduce energy usage. There are solar and geothermal and other kinds of strategies that offer tremendous savings, but I also think that At the that we should be looking at ways of discouraging the most wasteful gas guzzlers. (00:42:43) You think the administration was correct in backing out of the Kyoto no agreement on air quality. (00:42:52) I think it was dead wrong and I think how it did it was dead wrong. It was after you spent two or three years or more with the whole world negotiating that first agreement to try to cut emissions standards and making a formal agreement with all of these other countries to just announce that you're pulling out. We what we should have done if we if the present thought as he said that this was flawed he should have asked to reconvene the the negotiations and see if he can negotiate something. Closer to what? He thought was acceptable but this everybody says the scientists. Also a matter of fact, the administration itself said a few weeks ago. That is clear that global warming is no longer a theory. It is a reality. It's striking all over the world. It's the evidence is in we got to do something about it. (00:43:56) Tom your question, please yes say I was I had my question is when the Senate was debating the Iraq resolution at that same time. The Administration has gone to North Korea and found that there was nuclear weapons in North Korea, and it's unclear to me if the whole all the Senators I knew that information and if so, I'm not sure if that what the answer is to that question. But if they did know if they would have known the answer that they did in fact have nuclear weapons would have that changed the outcome of a Iraq resolution or at least the tone of it. Okay, and let me kind of playing off Lata masks are should Iraq in North Korea be treated differently. (00:44:48) I have read stories going both directions on the gentleman's question some say that we knew about we had we knew about the North Korean violation of their agreement on against (00:45:06) nuclear programs (00:45:08) that is military programs both while that debate was going on and some members of the Senate were not informed of it. I read another story. Where they didn't know about it, but you know, these things are not cookie cutter deals. They're very complex Iraq run by a real desperate and dangerous man with chemical and biological weapons has not yet developed nuclear weapons. The administration said in time, they will have it but I don't think there's anybody in the field that believes that they yet have them. It's a matter of great concern but it gives us a little time to deal with it North Korea apparently has a weapons program underway. And if I read the reports correctly, they may have a nuclear weapon or two. I'm not sure that but that that is a possibility that creates a much more dangerous imminent problem and It in the long run is not tolerable. I think the administration is doing a good job here at the Japanese the South Koreans the other day. The Chinese the Russians the Administration has done a good job of getting them all organized to squeeze the North Koreans to get them to back off from this risky development now and there have been some stories out of North Korea that suggests that they're beginning to been are you can never be sure about what you're hearing from North Korea, but it but I would I would give the administration High grades for that. (00:46:57) What about the Middle East would what would Senator Mondale recommend be done to try to bring some modicum of peace to that area? (00:47:10) There was a so Mitchell report about a year ago. It was a bipartisan report chaired by Senator Mitchell Warren Rudman and others that laid out a suggested path to renewed negotiation on the Palestinian West Bank issue. That that I think is the way we should go and among other things. It called for direct involvement by the president and His Highest officers to seek negotiations between the parties that could lead to an end of violence and to some sort of underlying political settlement based on a to Country Theory and to be negotiated. My strong belief is that it will not work without the United States. I was involved in the Camp David talks with Sadat and Beggin and Carter for which Carter has received the Nobel Peace Prize, which he richly deserves and I saw country's about to go to war that with time and energy and with the with the direct involvement of the president, but Camp David and elsewhere come to peace and sign a peace treaty and the the egyptian-israeli front has been totally peaceful for over 20 years. Now, it's a huge contribution and it shows that negotiations could work and I think the that teaches us a lesson today every Administration for over 25 years has been directly and energetically engaged in that way and and I Not trying to say this is easy. I know it's really rough. But without the United States, I don't think it works (00:49:14) back to domestic issues. Should the Congress extend the Welfare Law the 1996 welfare reform law which essentially removed the safety net for people on welfare urging them to get back to work and imposed a five-year limit on benefits. (00:49:33) I think that the verdict up till now on that law has been essentially positive but I put it that way because a lot of it was pegged to a growing prosperous fully employed America that offered people on welfare, if given training and given help in such as daycare and the rest to work themselves into the Work World. What worries me now is that we may be moving. We are moving into a period of higher unemployment were these persons who were barely employable or marginally employable don't have any skills. We're just making it into the work world and maybe pushed back out again. So I think we need to look at that bill and we need to step in again. (00:50:36) First of all, we need to get the economy growing again, but we (00:50:39) must remember something that Governor Thompson now the Secretary of Health and Human Services said when he was governor of Wisconsin, he said if you want welfare reform, you must understand it will cost more than its absence. In other words. It takes work and support to help these people make it back into fully employed private world. That's what we want. But it's not a simple yes or no answer we got to get in there and help (00:51:11) a couple more questions before we wrap up with the White House controlled by Republicans and let's assume for a moment Republicans retained control in the US House. Is it good to have a kind of divided government where the Democrats control the senate or would it be better for America to have one government or 1ne party control both houses of Congress in the White House? Can actually do something and break the gridlock that has characterized Washington Lo these many (00:51:40) years. I think we need two things. I think we need balance. We're going through a lot of tough issues overseas (00:51:52) threats the rest. We've discussed the economic problems the others. (00:51:57) I think that balance having more than one point of view debating and exploring. These matters is a strength for our country and I think most Americans would like it's not a party matter its more of making certain that the full picture is explored and listen to and so that's that's a matter of fact. I hope that the Democrats do pretty well this year. (00:52:26) Do you think that you would be better at Reaching Across the aisle and working with Republicans better than Paul (00:52:34) wellstone was Oh, I think Paul wellstone was very good at that and his memorial service the other night. There must have been 15 Republican Senators. They're all of whom had worked with Paul on wonder and other issues. I think we can that's one of the things we can rejoice in it's something that I worked hard on. I always figure that in the Senate you never pass anything by yourself and you never pass anything just by your party. You have nothing gets a majority unless the minority is also for it the Senate so it requires consensus. You have to begin with what you really believe and then work to try to get get it done with the help of (00:53:26) others. How important is it what the Governor Ventura decides to do about an interim appointment to the US Senate any advice for the governor on that or And it doesn't really matter who he (00:53:37) picks. I think he should do what he wants to do. And I think those of us who are nominated to run for office should do our jobs. And that's exactly what I intend to do. I tend to use these remaining days to move around the state to speak about what I would like to do for minnesotans in the senate about how I think I can do that from the first day and how important it is for us to deal with these issues now (00:54:11) Walter Mondale. Thank you for coming in today. Thank you so much Walter Mondale, who is the dfl parties new candidate for the US Senate. He was formally approved nominated by the party last night to replace the late Paul wellstone on next Tuesday's election ballot. And again a reminder. We will continue our coverage right on through election day lots more information available about All the candidates in their stands on the issues available on our website, Minnesota Public Radio dot-org. If you miss part of this program by the way will be re broadcasting at 929 and we should note that we're continuing to try to work out arrangements and have Republican candidate Norm Coleman in it as well. Gary eichten here. Thanks for tuning in today. (00:54:53) Minnesota Public Radio is proud of its educational sponsors our work together provides Public Radio Service to communities all around the region to sponsors. We'd like to thank our st. John's Abbey and University in Collegeville and the College of Saint Benedict in st. Joseph (00:55:08) Talk of the Nation is next (00:55:09) on the next All Things Considered President Bush in South Dakota campaign workers in Minnesota and a conversation with the former first lady of Egypt. I'm Lorna Benson. It's all things considered weekdays at 3:00 on Minnesota Public Radio. (00:55:25) You're listening to Minnesota Public Radio. We have a sunny Sky. It's 33 degrees at Kenner wfm 91.1 Minneapolis. And st. Paul Sunny to partly sunny through the afternoon with a high in the mid 30s tonight clear skies are forecast with a low in the upper teens pretty chilly. If you're out trick-or-treating partly cloudy skies, then tomorrow with a high temperature in the upper 30s. It's 2 o'clock.