"Face the Nation" transcript: April 15 with Sec. Geithner, Rep. Issa and Sen. McCain

BOB SCHIEFFER: And, of course, you did the story and then the wire services caught on--

MARK STRASSMANN: Mm-Hm.

BOB SCHIEFFER: --and before you know it, it became the national story.

MARK STRASSMANN: Huge. Yeah.

BOB SCHIEFFER: --that we had and it was during this week, of course, that we saw the third-degree murder charge filed against Mister Zimmerman. And so we'll see where the-- the thing goes from here. Jack Ford is our legal analyst for CBS News. He's in Philadelphia this morning. I want to ask you, Jack, just from a legal standpoint, this looks to me like it might be a very difficult case to prove.

JACK FORD (CBS News Analyst): It's difficult, Bob, for the-- for the prosecution. First of all, prosecutor always has the burden of proof in any case. But here, the burden of proof is essentially multiplied because not only does the prosecution have to prove the elements of a second-degree murder, remember, there's no premeditation alleged here that would make it first-degree matter-- murder. But second-degree murder is essentially-- you wanted to hurt somebody. You didn't want to kill them, but you wanted to hurt them so badly that they die. So the prosecution has to prove all of those elements.

Plus, you introduce this-- this interesting law that the state of Florida has-- a number of states actually have them now-- the Stand Your Ground law, which essentially says you don't have to retreat on the street. They made it similar to your house, inside your house, Bob, if somebody breaks in you don't have to run out the back door. You can use deadly force to defend yourself in your house. But Florida says the same thing on the street. You don't have to retreat if there's a reasonable fear for your own safety before you use deadly force. So now, the prosecution has to deal with that combination of factors here that the defense has said that they are going to bring up. So there's a lot going to be taking place in this-- inside this courtroom if indeed, they get that far.

BOB SCHIEFFER: We want to broaden this discussion out to two men who have already spoken out for it in various form. Georgetown University's Michael Eric Dyson, who has been our guest many times on this broadcast. He's a professor and author; and Time magazine columnist, Toure. Michael, first to you. Why should we be talking about this this morning?

MICHAEL ERIC DYSON, PhD (Georgetown University): Well, first of all, an egregious offense against criminal-- against justice has occurred. An unarmed young man with only skittles and iced tea in his hand is walking back to the gated community of which his father and his fianc» are at home. And he's returning home and he is assaulted and murdered. We know he's murdered. As Jack Ford just indicated, we don't know the events surrounding it, but what we do know is that we have 911 tapes of this man pursuing this young man and thinking certain things about him.

So that the collection of stereotypes that prevail, he looks like he's up to no good, he looks as if he's suspicious. Give us a cue that there's a racial animus at work here and roiling beneath the surface is a collection of viewpoints that have informed his understanding of this young man and then urges and motivates him to take action, despite the fact that the police have indicated to him that he shouldn't pursue it, which indicates to us that many white Americans, or at least non-African-American people take police orders as recommendations, whereas many African-American people take them as law.

BOB SCHIEFFER: Toure--

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