"Face the Nation" transcripts January 13, 2013: McCain, Manchin, McChrystal, Villaraigosa
MCCHRYSTAL: I personally believe that national service is important for the nation. That's all young people serve a term of national service. Certainly not all military but I believe those things have two effect. One those things which bind people to their nation are important. And another thing is we're also a nation that doesn't get to know each other well. Someone from one part of an inner city never meets someone from an upper class middle -- upper class neighborhood. We need some things that pull people together in shared experiences. We need to be ten years after the fact when they're meeting somewhere and the question is where did you serve begins the connection that allows them to move on, because we are getting too fragmented in my view.
SCHIEFFER: What do you think is the greatest threat to our national security at this point?
MCCHRYSTAL: In the near term, it's clearly our economic challenges. Our inability to make tough decisions to move our economy forward, that worries me in the near term. In the long term it's our education because that is the future.
SCHIEFFER: Not terrorism, education.
MCCHRYSTAL: We can handle terrorism. We can handle a nuclear- armed Iran. We can't handle a future where young Americans are not educated enough to take our country forward.
SCHIEFFER: General, I want to be one of many to thank you for your service. Thanks for being with us today. We'll be back in one minute with the mayor of Los Angeles.
SCHIEFFER: Joining us now the mayor of Los Angeles Antonio Villaraigosa. Mr. Mayor, thank you so much for being here. You are going to make a big speech here in Washington tomorrow on immigration, the "New York Times" reports this morning. The White House is planning a big push on immigration. Give us an out line of what you're thinking about here.
VILLARAIGOSA: The time is now. We can't wait another political season to pass comprehensive immigration reform. This isn't just a moral, it's an economic imperative. If we bring these people, 11 million people from out of the dark and into the light, it's about a $1.5 trillion impact to the U.S. economy. The dreamers alone, a $329 billion impact. We can't do this piecemeal and we can't have second class citizenship. This has to be a pathway to full citizenship.
SCHIEFFER: What do you want to see happen? And let me also ask you, do you have any -- did you get an advance peak at what the president's going to present here?
VILLARAIGOSA: I did get to talk to them a bit, but I'll let him make that presentation. I talked to the White House a bit.
SCHIEFFER: What do you want to see happen?
VILLARAIGOSA: Well, what I just outlined.
SCHIEFFER: Yeah, but I mean, what are the most important things, a path the citizenship, but how do you get that?
VILLARAIGOSA: Well, you get it, obviously you have to have that pathway that allows folks to become full citizens, the -- make sure that you get at the end of the line, that you pay your taxes, that you're not, that you have a background check but in the end we've got to make sure that these people have a pathway to full citizenship. I think that's very, very important. You can't do this in a piecemeal way and importantly I think it's got to be bipartisan. It won't be pass muster if it's not. And I'm heartened to see that Senator McCain and others I think there are about eight in the senate that have been working together and talking about comprehensive immigration reform, not just a piecemeal approach.
SCHIEFFER: Who are the first people that ought of get citizenship? You're talking about the kids or who?
VILLARAIGOSA: Well, I think we need to make sure that 11 million people, after the background check, after they get at the end of the line -- obviously the people who become citizens first are the people who have been in line, after they get out of the line, after they have done everything to make sure that they're -- you know, they've had a full background check, paid their back taxes. We've got to do this in a way that gives all of these people an opportunity to be full citizens of the United States of America.
SCHIEFFER: You are also one of the mayors who is trying to do something about guns. What do you want to see in that field? The vice president is heading up this task force. You just heard John McCain say he's still not for a ban on assault weapons. There is still going to be a lot of controversy on this. What needs to happen here and how do we get that?
VILLARAIGOSA: You know, after Newtown, the massacre of 22 children in an elementary school, we can find a middle ground here. The fact of the matter is that Vice President Biden sat with all of the constituents, including the NRA. I do believe that we need an assault weapons ban. In California, I was one of the authors of the assault weapons ban. It's important. I think we need to ban high-capacity magazines. We need universal background checks. Right now 40 percent of all the sales of guns and assault weapons are done privately. And you don't need a background check for that. We need to repeal the Tiahrt amendments which say that you have to throw away a background check after 24 hours and really limits the ability of the federal, state, and local governments to work together to get guns out of the hands of criminals and people that shouldn't have them, the mentally ill. We can do a lot more to beef up and fortify our mental health registries to make sure we know who is on those lists. We've got to do a lot more to provide mental health services. We've got to address the culture of violence in this country. You see parents really need to have a conversation with their kids, particularly young kids, video games and the movies that they see. We can have this balanced, bipartisan discussion without the kind of nay-saying that we've had in the past. The time is now.
SCHIEFFER: What about this idea of police in schools? I mean, I can see in some schools where that might be helpful, maybe even necessary. I can't imagine in every school that that would be the answer. What is your feeling with that?
VILLARAIGOSA: Well, in L.A., we are patrolling every school. We have officers coming to every school in our city.
SCHIEFFER: Every day?
VILLARAIGOSA: Every day. Not all day, but at various parts of the day while school is open, they are visiting the campuses to make sure things are going well. But like you, that's not the answer. It's a comprehensive answer. And I just mentioned some of the points of that balanced approach. I don't agree with the NRA that we should be arming our teachers. But we should have discussions in our classrooms about bullying and violence and resolving conflict without violence. And we've got to do a lot more around mental health, as I mentioned, but we do need gun -- sensible gun safety laws in the United States of America. You know, the Republicans in the House and Senate have blocked the approval of director of the ATF for the last seven or eight years. We've got to beef up and really move away from the kinds of things we've done in the past.
SCHIEFFER: While you're here, are you going to talk to anybody at the White House about maybe a little more diversity in some of these cabinets?
- Bob Schieffer on "dumb and dumber" in Washington
- Schieffer: "Welcome to dumb and dumber" in Washington
- Face the Nation transcripts May 19, 2013: Pfeiffer, Cornyn, Chaffetz & Pruitt
- AP president blasts "unconstitutional" phone records probe
- Adviser on White House scandals: "Partisan fishing expeditions" won't distract Obama
- May 19: Pfeiffer, Cornyn, Chaffetz & Pruitt
- Gates knocks "cartoonish" Benghazi criticism
- Face In the News: Pfeiffer defends Obama administration
- Pruitt: Justice Department's seizure of AP phone records "unconstitutional"
- Obama cultivating "culture of cover-ups and intimidation," Cornyn says
- Official: We knew Benghazi was a terrorist attack "from the get-go"
- Maya Angelou recalls her childhood on Mother's Day
- Face the Nation transcripts May 12, 2013: Gates, Pickering, Ayotte, Durbin, and Angelou
- Noonan: Petraeus resignation "mysterious"
- Watergate: "A scandal that brought down the president"
- Pfeiffer: "Partisan fishing expeditions" won't "distract" White House