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Arkansas Week Special Edition with Senator Mark Pryor

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HELLO AGAIN EVERYONE. THANKS FOR JOINING US FOR "ARKANSAS WEEK" AS THE CONSTANT VIEWER KNOWS AT THE END OF EACH YEAR WE SPEND A HALF-HOUR WITH EACH OF THE TWO SENATORS AND THE HONORABLE MARK PRYOR IS WITH US. THANKS FOR BEING WITH US.

THANKS FOR HAVING ME.

I THINK WE ARE AIRING AFTER THE RECESS.  WE'RE GOING BACK ON JANUARY 6, THE SENATE ANYWAY, A FEW DAYS FROM NOW WITH A PRETTY FULL AGENDA BUT YOU LEFT WITH A BUDGET AGREEMENT OR AT LEAST A SPENDING CAP IN PLACE.  WHAT DOES THAT SAY FOR THE SESSION TO COME?

WELL, I HOPE THAT MEANS WE CAN HAVE A PRODUCTIVE 2014 AND 2013 WAS A HORRIBLE YEAR LEGISLATIVELY AND THE SENATE AND THE HOUSE WERE AT AN ALL TIME LOW IN TERMS OF PRODUCTIVITY. THERE WERE AGREEMENTS REACHED IN LATE 2013 AND HOPEFULLY SETS THE STAGE FOR GETTING THINGS DONE LIKE THE FARM BILL, A REAL BUDGET, GET THE APPROPRIATION BILLS DONE AND REALLY GET THE CONGRESS BACK IN BUSINESS.

AND THERE WAS A GREAT DEAL OF FIRE ANYWAY AMONG THE REALLY CONSERVATIVE WING, CERTAINLY IN THE HOUSE AND SOME OF YOUR OWN COLLEAGUES FOUND IT APPROPRIATE TO OPPOSE IT FOR WHATEVER REASON EARLIER THAN ANTICIPATED BUT THE FACT THERE WAS A AGREEMENT ON MURRAY RYAN OR RYAN MURRAY AND IS THAT MENTION A SOFTENING OF THE IDEOLOGICAL DIVIDE.  THE SHUT DOWN WAS A THE DISASTER.

YES AND WE HAVE SEEN WITH THE HYPER PARTISANSHIP LEAD TO GRIDLOCK AND I AM HOPING THAT WE WILL SEE LESS AND THE FACT THAT WE HAVE A AGREEMENT AND SENATOR MURRAY AND RYAN WORKED IT OUT AND IT'S A COMPROMISE AND NOBODY IS COMPLETELY HAPPY WITH IT AND OUR DELEGATION IS SPLIT THREE-THREE AND NEVERTHELESS I DID AND I THOUGHT IT WAS THE RIGHT THING TO DO AND WE NEED TO GET INTO GOVERNING AND SHOWING LEADERSHIP HERE AND I AM  AN OPTIMIST AND OPENING NEXT YEAR WILL BE BETTER AND BY THE WAY I LIVE IN ARKANSAS AND WHEN I AM AT HOME AND FILLING UP GAS AND PEOPLE SAY "WHY  CAN'T YOU GET ALONG?  AND I AM SICK MUCH IT TOO BUT YOU MEDPEOPLE THAT WANT TO TRY TO MAKE IT BETTER AND I WANT TO BE OPTIMISTIC AND A MATTER OF POLITICAL WILL. EVERYTHING WE DO WE CAN GET IT DONE IN A BETTER WAY AND BETTER WAY OF GOVERNING BUT YOU NEED ENOUGH PEOPLE THERE TO GET IT DONE.

WELL, THE FIRST DEADLINE IS JANUARY 15 WHEN THE EXISTING CR EXPIRES.  WILL YOU GET IT DONE BY THEN?

I THINK SO.  I FEEL BETTER ABOUT IT TODAY THAN I DID A FEW WEEKS AGO SO I THINK WE WILL AND THE OTHER THING AGAIN IS VERY IMPORTANT AND IT'S IMPORTANT JUST IN NUTS AND BOLTS GOOD GOVERNMENT IS ALLOW THE APPROPRIATIONS PROCESS TO GET BACK ON TRACK AND THAT IS WHAT IS ON THE 15TH AND GETTING THE BILLS BACK ON TRACK AND I'M ON THE COMMITTEE OF APPROPRIATIONS I TALKED TO MY CHAIRMAN AND OTHERS AND [INAUDIBLE] OF MISSOURI AND THE RANKING MEMBER ON THE COMMITTEE AND TALKED TO THE HOUSE MEMBERS OVER THERE. WE'RE TRYING VERY HARD TO GET THE AGAPPROPRIATION BILL DONE AND THAT IS A GOOD SIGN IF WE GET THAT DONE.  PEOPLE TALK ABOUT CUTTING SPENDING AND IF YOU HAVE A APPROPRIATION PROCESS YOU CAN DO IT AND IN A SMART WAY.

WHAT WOULD YOU SAY -- WAIT, THESE ARE SOME OF THE OBJECTIONS UNDER THE MURRAY RYAN AGREEMENT DISCRETIONARY SPENDING WENT UP.

YEAH, FOLLOWING THE CONTEXT OF THE BUDGET CONTROL ACT OF 2011 AND RELEVANT AND CONTEXT AROUND EVERYTHING BUT THE TRUTH IS IT SETS FROM SPENDING CAPS AND UNDER THE BUDGET CONTROL ACT THERE IS A LITTLE ROLLER COASTER AND SMOOTHS THAT OUT.  IT STILL GETS US TO THE TARGET NUMBERS WE WANT TO GET TO IN TERMS OF CONTROLLING OUR SPENDING AND CONGRESS HASN'T RECEIVED A LOT OF CREDIT FOR THAT BUT THEY DID THAT IN THE BUDGET CONTROL ACT. THAT'S WHAT THE SEQUESTER IS ABOUT.  IT'S CONTROVERSIAL ABOUT THE SEQUESTER AND GET US AWAY FROM THAT BUT CONTROL THE SPENDING AND AGAIN IT'S A TRADE OFF BUT MOST AMERICANS LIKE WHAT THEY SEE AND IF WE CAN GET BACK TO WHERE WE ARE GETTING THINGS DONE THAT IS WHAT MOST WANT TO SEE.

IF YOU MEET THAT DEADLINE THERE ARE THREE WEEKS UNTIL ANOTHER VOTE.  MORE DRAMA TO COME?

I CERTAINLY HOPE WE DON'T HAVE MORE DRAMA AND I THINK MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE WOULD HAVE LEARNED THEIR LESSON WHEN THE GOVERNMENT SHUT DOWN AND ON THE BRINK OF THIS AND THAT'S NOT GOOD FOR ANYONE AND WE NEED TO SHOW LEADERSHIP AROUND THE WORLD AND AN EXAMPLE HOW WASHINGTON HAS HURT THE ECONOMY AND I HOPE PEOPLE DON'T PLAY THE GAMES AND JOIN WITH ME AND SHOW SOME LEADERSHIP.

WHAT DO WE PAY IN TERMS OF MOVING THE AGENDA FORWARD AND WHAT WILL WE PAY  MILK IN THE NEXT TWO MONTHS?  AND THE FARM BILL.

IT'S CLOSE AND THE REASON PEOPLE TALK ABOUT 7-GALLON -- DOLLARS GALLON FOR MILK AND THEY'RE DOING SOME THINGS AT THE USDA AND WHEN THERE IS NO FLEXIBILITY LEFT MILK WILL GO UP TO THAT PRICE.  AND AGRICULTURE IS 25% OF ARKANSAS' ECONOMY. YOU DON'T PLAY GAMES WITH THAT. IT'S NOT BROKEN.  YOU DON'T NEED TO FIX IT.  LET'S PASS THE COMPREHENSIVE BILL.  THE SENATE PASSED A BILL.  THE HOUSE BLEW IT UP.  WE ALL KNOW THAT STORY AND LET'S PASS A BILL IN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS.

IS THERE ANY POINT DISCUSSING SEPARATING FOOD STAMP PROGRAM FROM THE AGPROGRAM ITSELF?

I THINK THEY FOUGHT THAT BATTLE AND QUITE FRANKLY THEY LOST IT AND THEY DID THAT AND LIKE THE DOG THAT CAUGHT THE CAR AND WAIT A MINUTE.  IF YOU DO THAT X, Y, Z HAPPENS AND MILK GOES TO $7 AND THE RIPPLE EFFECT IN THE FARM ECONOMY.  WE NEED TO RMENT THAT AGRICULTURE IS NOT OVERLY SEXY TO A LOT OF PEOPLE BUT IT'S A CORE STRENGTH IN THIS COUNTRY.  WE DO IT BETTER THAN ANYBODY IN THE WORLD. EVERYBODY EVERYONE WANTS TO BE LIKE IT'S HERE AND THE PROCESSES AND THIS IS THE NAME OF THE GAME, AMERICAN AGRICULTURE.  WE'RE THE GLOBAL LEADER.  LET'S NOT MESS IT UP AND THE HOUSE IS PROCESS OF DOING AND MESSING IT UP AND IN THE AGRICULTURAL WORLD AND LET'S GET THIS PASSED AND JANUARY WOULD BE GOOD FOR ARKANSAS AND GOOD FOR THE U.S. ECONOMY.

LET'S SIDE STEP AND REFER TO THE LEGENDARY HANDSHAKES BETWEEN RAUL CASTRO AND PRESIDENT OBAMA AND WHAT DOES IT MEAN.  ASSUME FOR A MOMENT IT DOESN'T MEAN ANYTHING THAN A PHOTOGRAPH.  IS IT TIME TO END THE EMBARGO. YOU MENTIONED ARKANSAS AG AND POULTRY, WHEETD?

I THINK IT'S TIME TO END IT AND HAS TO DO WITH PRESIDENTIAL POLITICS AND YES IT'S TIME TO PUT IT ON THE TABLE AND END IT AND MOVE FORWARD WITH CUBA. CUBA IS -- IF YOU JUST LOOK AT IT IN ECONOMIC TERMS IT'S A GOOD MARKET FOR THE U.S. THERE COULD BE GOOD TRADE BACK AND FORTH. THE EUROPEANS AND CANADIANS AND OTHERS ARE IN CUBA BUT THE U.S. ISN'T AND IT'S TIME TO GET THAT RESOLVED.

ANOTHER ISSUE THAT'S PENDING IS EXTENSION OF LONG-TERM UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS EXPIRED IN LATE DECEMBER, LATE THIS MONTH ANYWAY AND I THINK YOUR LEADER WANTS TO SCHEDULE A VOTE ON RENEWING THE PROGRAM OR EXTENDING THE BENEFITS ANYWAY.

WELL, I AM LOOKING AT THE LANGUAGE.  I HAVEN'T SEEN THE LANGUAGE YET.  I KNOW THERE ARE PRINCIPLES LAID OUT BUT I WANT TO SEE HOW IT'S AID OUT AND I'M NOT INTO AN INDEFINITE EXTENSION AND MAYBE A THREE MONTH EXTENSION BUT I WANT TO SEE HOW IT IMPACTS ARKANSAS FIRST.

ARE YOU LEANING AYE?

I WOULD SAY THAT BUT 2348 I TALK TO FOLKS AND HOW IT IMPACTS THEM I WOULDN'T SAY YES ANYTIME.

WHAT ABOUT A MINIMUM WAGE INCREASE?

I LIKE THE --

STATE AND FEDERAL.

STATE AND FEDERAL AND TWO DIFFERENT LEVELS OF MINIMUM WAGE.  I ACTUALLY LIKE THE ARKANSAS APPROACH ON MINIMUM WAGE.  I DON'T LIKE THE NATIONAL APPROACH AND THE NATIONAL APPROACH IS TO RAISE IT TO $10 10 AND I THINK THAT IS COACH 22 QUICK AND I VOONT SEEN ALL THE DETAILS IN ARKANSAS AND TAKE THREE YEARS AND GRADUALLY UP TO $8.50 AND I THINK THAT IS A REASONABLE APPROACH AND GOOD FOR ARKANSAS.  I THINK IT WOULD BE GOOD FOR WORKING PEOPLE IN THE STATE.  WE HAVE A LOT OF MINIMUM WAGE PEOPLE IN THE STANDARD AND HELP STANDARD OF LIVING SO IF THAT COMES TOGETHER I WILL PROBABLY SUPPORT THAT.

YOU DESIGN OR ENDORSE --

I JUST HAVE ONE VOTE LIKE ANYBODY ELSE AND THEY GO TO THE BOOTH AND VOTE AND I WOULD PROBABLY SUPPORT THAT.  I WOULD HAVE TO LOOK AT THE DETAILS.  I HAVEN'T SEEN IT IN WRITING YET BUT THE STATE MINIMUM IS $6.25 AND FEDERAL IS $7.25 AND HARD TO TAKE CARE OF A FAMILY WITH THAT AND I THINK GOING TO $8.50 IS PRETTY REASONABLE.

IS IT THE DOLLAR ISSUE OR THE ISSUE OF FEDERAL STATE -- IN YOUR FIRST CAMPAIGN YOU WERE CRITICAL OF THE GENTLEMAN YOU WERE OPPOSING AND THE INCREASES IN THE MINIMUM WAGE?

YEAH I THINK YOU LOOK AT THE  AND HOW IT IMPACTS AND THAT AMOUNT IS JUST TOO FAST AND I THINK IT'S A LITTLE QUICK BUT I THINK THE ARKANSAS APPROACH IS BETTER.  AGAIN THIS IS ASSUMING THAT THIS GROUP GETS IT ON THE BALLOT OR DO WHATEVER THEY'RE TRYING TO DO AND GET IT ORGANIZED AND I THINK GOING TO $8.50 AND PHASE IT IN GRADUALLY MAKES SENSE AND MOST BUSINESS PEOPLE I HAVE TALKED TO THINK IT MAKES SENSE.

IMMIGRATION REFORM.

WELL, I SUPPORTED IT.  SO FAR THE HOUSE HASN'T TAKEN IT UP AND ALL OF THE VIEWERS KNOW THAT IMMIGRATION REFORM IS LONG OVER DUE IN THIS COUNTRY AND I SUPPORTED IT AGAIN.  ONE OF THE THINGS I LIKED ABOUT THIS LEGISLATION YOU HAD TWO DEMOCRATS AND TWO REPUBLICANS IN THE SENATE -- EXCUSE ME, THREE AND THREE THAT WORKED ON THIS AND REALLY MADE IT HAPPEN AND I WAS GLAD THEY DID.  I THINK THEY -- IT'S NOT PERFECT AND THERE ARE TRADE OFFS IN IT BUT STILL I AM GLAD THEY DID AND THE ONLY WAY TO GET IT DONE IS A BIPARTISAN WAY.

AND TOO MANY TRADE OFF AMNESTY, AMNESTY, AMNESTY AND THAT'S ALL YOU HEAR.

LET ME TELL YOU THE BILL THAT WAS PASSED THE STRONGEST BORDER SECURITY BILL PASSED AND IF YOU CAN'T SUPPORT THIS YOU DON'T SUPPORT IMMIGRATION REFORM AND I THINK THAT'S THE WAY IT IS. THEY'RE NOT GOING TO SUPPORT IT. THEY'RE GOING TO CALL IT DIFFERENT NAMES AND TALK ABOUT AMNESTY OR WHATEVER AND AT THE END OF THE DAY THEY WON'T SUPPORT IT.  MAYBE THE HOUSE CAN IMPROVE THE BILL.  LET'S TRY AND DO IT.  I WOULD LOVE TO SEE THEM IMPROVE IT AND SOMETHING THAT WE CAN ALL AGREE ON.

THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT -- DO YOU REGRET NOW YOUR SUPPORT OF IT AND WHAT DO YOU MAKE OF THE -- EVEN THE WHITE HOUSE AS ACKNOWLEDGED IT BUNGLED IT FROM THE ROLL OUT FROM EVERY WAY IMAGINABLE AND SEEMS TO GETTING MOMENTUM IN TERMS OF ENROLLMENT.

THE WHITE HOUSE HAS DONE THAT AND LOOKS LOOK LIKE ABOUT 2 MILLION PEOPLE SIGNED UP AND I SEE IN ARKANSAS THAT WE HAVE 70,000 PLUS SIGNED UP ON MEDICAID AND THE PRIVATE OPTION HERE.  I THINK ARKANSAS SHOWED A LOT OF INITIATIVE AND INNOVATION TO DO THE PRIVATE OPTION ON MEDICAID. YOU KNOW HERE AGAIN YOU WILL HAVE AT LEAST 70,000 -- MAYBE MORE THAN THAT THROUGHOUT 2014 WHO NOW HAVE PRIVATE INSURANCE THAT DIDN'T HAVE IT BEFORE AND WHEN YOU TALK TO -- LIKE I GO AROUND WHEN I TRAVEL THE STATE AND TALK TO RURAL HOSPITALS, TALK TO DOCTORS, ALL KINDS OF FOLKS BUT YOU GO TO THE HOSPITALS THERE IS NO DOUBT THAT THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT IS WHAT IS GOING TO KEEP THE DOORS OPEN AND WE NEED THOSE RURAL HOSPITALS AND I TELL MY FRIENDS IN WASHINGTON AND ARKANSAS IF YOU HAVE SOMETHING BETTER I WILL VOTE FOR IT BUT THEY NEVER COME UP WITH A REAL SOLUTION.  THEY LIKE TO CRITICIZE THE LAW. THIS LAW ISN'T PERFECT.  WE NEED TO WORK ON IT BUT MY VIEW IS LET'S WORK ON THOSE THINGS.

WHAT IS THE NUMBER ONE PROBLEM?  IS IT TECHNOLOGICAL OR STRUCTURAL?

WELL, I THINK THERE ARE GOING TO BE SOME STRUCK URL PROBLEMS WITH IT.  IT WAS FUNNY I LOOKED AT THE PRESS STATEMENT I HAD WHEN IT PASSED AND I SAID "THERE ARE GOING TO BE PROBLEMS WITH THIS AND I WILL BE THERE TO FIX THEM"  AND I WAS THERE FROM THE BEGINNING LET'S ADDRESS THE PROBLEMS.  SOME ARE GOING TO BE STRUCTURAL BUT A LOT OF IT IS JUST THERE HAS BEEN SO MUCH MISINFORMATION ABOUT THIS TR THE VERY BEGINNING.  I STILL HAVE PEOPLE TELL ME TODAY "THIS IS A GOVERNMENT TAKE OVER OF HEALTH CARE"  WHERE?  DID YOU READ THE LAW AND THE BILL?  IT'S NOT A TAKE OVER BUT IT'S DESIGNED TO GET MILLIONS OF AMERICANS HEALTH INSURANCE THAT THEY DIDN'T HAVE BEFORE AND AGAIN THIS IS PRIVATE INSURANCE.  IT'S NOT A NEW PROGRAM.  OR MEDICARE FOR ALL. IT'S PRIVATE INSURANCE TO MAKE IT MORE ACCESSIBLE AND THINGS LIKE FIXING THE PRE-EXISTING CONDITION AND JUST IN ARKANSAS IF YOU LOOK AT THE NUMBERS THE PEOPLE IN THE INDIVIDUAL MARKET THE NON GROUP MARKET BUT ON THE INDIVIDUAL MARKET 35% OF THOSE PEOPLE HAVE BEEN DENIED COVERAGE.  THEY TRIED TO GET HEALTH INSURANCE BUT CAN'T GET IT.  WITH THIS LAW ZERO PERCENT IS DENIED AND WE FIXED THAT SO THERE ARE THINGS THAT ARE GOOD IN THIS.  LET'S FOCUS ON THE GOOD AND EMPHASIZE THOSE AND TAKE THE STUFF THAT IS NOT WORKING, THE BAD THINGS AND LIKE YOU SAID STRUCTURAL AND GET THOSE TAKEN OUT OF THE LAW OR FIX THOSE.

WELL, THE OPPONENTS OR SOMETIMES FRIENDLY CRITICS WOULD ACKNOWLEDGE GOVERNMENT OUT LAYS ON HEALTH CARE THROUGH THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT ARE INEVITABLY GOING TO RISE WITH THE AGING POPULATION AND THE PEOPLE TAKING ADVANTAGE OF THE SUBSIDIES.  IS IT WORTH THE TRADE?  IS IT WORTH THE PRICE?

AGAIN I HAVEN'T HEARD A BETTER ALTERNATIVE ON IT.  IF YOU LOOK ON THE TREND LINES ON HEALTH CARE BEFORE THIS LAW WAS PASSED WHAT YOU SAW VERY CLEARLY HEALTH CARE WAS GETTING LESS AND LESS AFFORDABLE.  MORE PEOPLE WERE DROPPING OUT AND FEWER PEOPLE WERE GETTING PRIVATE INSURANCE AND JUST SHOWING UP AT THE EMERGENCY ROOM ET CETERA, ET CETERA AND ALL OF THE TREAD LINES WERE BAD.  I AM EXAGGERATING HERE BUT YOU COULD SAY UNLESS YOU WORKED FOR A 40 OON 500 COMPANY OR A SCHOOL DISTRICT OR SOMETHING YOU WOULDN'T GOING TO HAVE COVERAGE AND MORE PEOPLE WERE DROPPING OFF AND THAT'S AN XAISMERATION BUT YOU CAN SEE THE TREND LINES AND GET THEM HEADED BACK IN A DIFFERENT DIRECTION.  IT'S NOT PERFECT.  LIKE I SAID THERE ARE THINGS TO CHANGE IN IT.  I SUPPORTED SOME OF THE CHANGES. YOU MAY NOT REMEMBER A YEAR OR TWO AGO ONE OF THE FIRST ISSUES PEOPLE WERE CONCERNED AND THE SMALL BUSINESS AND 1099 AND HOW THEY DO THIS AND THERE WAS A TAX IN 1099 AND WE FIXED THAT. THERE IS SOMETHING CALLED THE INDEPENDENT PAYMENT ADVISORY BOARD AND I AM THE LEAD DEMOCRATIC IN REPEALING THAT.  I AM TRYING TO MAKE IT WORK BUT I'M NOT FOR TOTAL REPEAL THOUGH.

YOU TALKED ABOUT HOW AMERICANS  ARE TIRED OF POLITICAL DRAMA IN WASHINGTON. DID YOU IN RESISTING A CHANGE IN THE FILIBUSTER REQUIREMENT ON CERTAIN LOWER LEVEL JUDICIAL APPELLATE NOMINEES AND EXECUTIVE BRANCHES NOMINEES DID YOU ADD TO THE DRAMA OR DETRACT FROM IT?

I DIDN'T SUPPORT THE RULES THAT HARRY REID PUSHED AND PEOPLE KNOW THAT.  THERE IS NO QUESTION THAT THE FILIBUSTER HAS BEEN ABUSED.  IT'S INEXCUSABLE HOW MANY WE HAVE HAD IN THE LAST YEARS IN THE SENATE AND I UNDERSTAND WHY THEY WANT THE RULES CHANGED BUT I DIDN'T WANT IT BECAUSE I THINK THE FILIBUSTER IS A IMPORTANT CHECK IN BALANCE AGAINST THE EXECUTIVE AND THAT'S IMPORTANT ROLE OF WHAT THE SENATE'S ROLE IS AND AGAIN IT'S BEEN ABUSED.  THEY CHANGED THE RULE OVER MY OBJECTION.  I DIDN'T SUPPORT THE RULES CHANGE.  WHAT IT'S DONE I AM AFRAID DO LONG-TERM DAMAGE TO THE SENATE.  I KNOW FOR CERTAIN THAT IT'S MADE FOR VERY VERY HARD FEELINGS IN THE SENATE. THE REPUBLICANS ARE VERY, VERY ANGRY WITH SENATOR REID AND OTHERS.  AGAIN THERE ARE TWO SIDES OF EVERY STORY AND THE DEMOCRATS AND THE REPUBLICANS AND I DON'T THINK THIS HELPS MATTERS.  I THINK IT HURTS MATTERS AND THERE HAS BEEN A LOT OF DRAMA AROUND THIS AND JUST LIKE WE SAID BEFORE IT'S ALL FIXABLE.  THE RULES WE HAVE HAD WE HAD FOR 50 YEARS AND THEY WORKED PRETTY WELL.  AS YOU KNOW THE FILIBUSTER HAS HAD ITS MOMENTS MAYBE ON CIVIL RIGHTS OR ONE NOMINEE OR SOME ISSUE, WHATEVER.  IT CAN BE ABUSED AND VERY FRUSTRATING FOR PEOPLE BUT OVER ALL THE RULE IS NOT THE PROBLEM.  IT'S THE PEOPLE THAT ARE ABUSING THE RULE.  I LOST THAT FIGHT.  I DIDN'T WANT TO CHANGE THE RULE.  I WANT TO WORK WITH PEOPLE.  I FEEL LIKE MOST DEMOCRATS FEEL THEY GAVE THE REPUBLICANS EVERY OPPORTUNITY TO CLEAN UP THEIR ACT BUT I AM CONCERNED ABOUT THE FUTURE THOUGH.

WELL, TO THAT POINT INSOMNIACS OR CSPAN JUNKIES COULD WATCH THE SESSION AND HEAR LANGUAGE MEMBERS TALKING TO AND TO ONE ANOTHER AND LANGUAGE THAT IN YOUR TIME IN THE SENATE WOULD BE UNHEARD OF IN YOUR FATHER'S TIME.  IT'S ALMOST POISONOUS.

IT IS POISONOUS.

DO YOU SEE AN END TO THAT AND BREACHING IT?

IT'S UP TO US TO END IT AND WE NEED TO MOVE ON AND WORK TOGETHER BUT ONE THING I AM WORRIED ABOUT FOR OUR COUNTRY I LOOK BACK AT ARKANSAS WE HAD INCREDIBLY GREAT LEADERS FROM ARKANSAS.  JUST IN THE SENATE AND YOU HAD FULL GREAT, MC CLEANIN, BUMMERS, MY DAD AND YOU WONDER IF THEY WOULD HAVE GOTTEN INTO POLITICS AS IT IS TODAY AND I THINK THERE ARE ENOUGH ARKANSANS THAT BELIEVE POLITICS IS A NOBLE PROFESSION AND CALLING AND GET IN AND SERVE YOUR FELLOW MAN AND MAKE A DIFFERENCE FOR THE NATION AND THE WORLD AND LOOK AT WHAT FULBRIGHT DID FOR THE WORLD AND A SENATOR FROM ARKANSAS AND I WORRY ABOUT WHERE WE'RE GOING AND I CANNOT GUARANTEE IT'S GOING TO GET BETTER.  IT SHOULD GET BETTER.  BUT I DO THINK THAT WE NEED TO SEND MORE PEOPLE TO WASHINGTON WHO WANT TO WORK TOGETHER AND I WILL MAKE ONE LAST POINT.  IT'S LIKE IF SOMEONE COMES INTO YOU AT AETN AND I WANT A JOB BUT I'M NOT GOING TO WORK WITH HALF OF THE PEOPLE HERE.  WOULD YOU HIRE THAT PERSON?  NO.  BUT THOSE ARE THE PEOPLE RUNNING FOR OFFICE AND WINNING TODAY.  THEY'RE SAYING I'M NOT GOING TO WORK WA THAT PARTY OR THAT PRESIDENT OR THIS GROUP, WHATEVER AND WHAT HAPPENS IS GRIDLOCK SO IT'S ALL PRETTY PREDICTABLE AND YOU CAN SEE OVER THE LAST ELECTION CYCLES WHERE IT'S GOING AND I AM HOPING IN 2014 AND AROUND THE COUNTRY AND IN ARKANSAS PEOPLE WAKE UP AND ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. WE NEED TO SEND PEOPLE TO GET IT DONE FOR US.

MUCH DISCUSSION OVER THE LAST FIVE YEARS.  HOW MUCH IS OWED TO THE INCUMBENT PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES AND THAT HE OCCUPIES THE OFFICE?

THERE IS SOME OF THAT AND PRESIDENT OBAMA HAS CERTAINLY MISSED A LOT OF OPPORTUNITIES TO BE MORE BIPARTISAN, TO REACH ACROSS THE AISLE TO GET THINGS DONE.  NO DOUBT ABOUT IT HE HAS MISSED OPPORTUNITY AND PRESIDENT BUSH DID AS WELL AND IN THIS HYPER PARTISAN ENVIRONMENT EVEN WITH THIS PRESIDENT AND PRESIDENT BUSH IT'S HARD AND PARTISAN AND GETTING WORSE ALL THE TIME AND AGAIN THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH THE SYSTEM ITSELF.  THE SYSTEM ITSELF IF WE LET IT WORK WILL WORK WELL.  I MEAN IT'S NOT ALWAYS BEAUTIFUL BUT IT WILL WORK.  THAT'S THE PROBLEM WE'RE NOT LETTING IT WORK.  WE'RE ALLOWING THE PARTISANSHIP AND PARTY CONSIDERATIONS TO BE ELEVATED AMONG EVERYTHING ELSE AND YOU SEE THE BREAK DOWN.

SENATOR PRYOR AS ALWAYS WE APPRECIATE THIS HALF-HOUR YOU GRANT US.

THANK YOU AND THANK YOU TO AETN FOR ALL THAT YOU DO FOR US.

I HAVE BEEN INSTRUCTED TO ADD A CHANGE OF IMPORT FOR THE ENTIRE FREE WORLD.  AFTER A GENERATION "ARKANSAS WEEK" IS MOVING FROM 8:00 P.M. ON FRIDAYS TO 7:30 P.M..  WE WILL TRUST THAT AID YOUR SOCIAL CALENDAR AND AGAIN THANK YOU FOR BEING WITH US AND WE WILL SEE YOU NEXT TIME.

"ARKANSAS WEEK" IS MADE POSSIBLE IN PART BY THE "ARKANSAS TIMES" KEEPING YOU INFORMED BY COVERING PEOPLE, EVENTS, AND POLICTICS IN ARKANSAS. BY FM 89 KUAR LITTLE ROCK WITH IN DEPTH ANALYSIS AND DISCUSSION EACH WEEKDAY.

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