Face the Nation transcripts March 17, 2013: Ryan, Klobuchar, Priebus

PRIEBUS: Well, we can do quite a bit. I mean, obviously...

SCHIEFFER: What do you want to do?

PRIEBUS: Well, what I would personally want to do is I would set a beginning date, maybe January 1, and then I would set a new end date for the primary season, maybe the end of April, no later than mid-May, and then if you have your convention at the end of June or mid-July, you compress the primary process. Just doing that, Bob, you know, is pretty unprecedented. If you can get an April 30 or a mid-May end date, you have just shortened the primary season. You've also compacted it a little bit as well. But under the rule-making process of the Republican National Committee, there's one thing -- that's one thing and one power we do have, which is we can control the method by which delegates are awarded and how they're divvied up by states and state legislatures. So of course we're going to need states to cooperate. This is not going to be done without state parties being on board. But there are lots of options out there. One is after your carve-out states are done, one option was to divide the country in quarters and do a regional rotating primary, redo a different region every two to three weeks. That can be complicated, but that's one of the options that's out there. If by just setting an end date to the primary and just by moving the convention up, just by moving the convention, Bob, are you automatically -- you're automatically shortening the primary process itself.

SCHIEFFER: I take it you think that the debates hurt your party rather than helped people get to know who these people to know who these people were.

PRIEBUS: Well, it hurt them because, number one, when you walked in the door, of course there were six or seven -- there were multiple already on the calendar. It hurt because there was no way to control it. I mean, if have you 10 candidates and nine out of 10 raise their hand and say I'm going to take any two-hour block offered, well, then you have a debate every three days. And you're the only show in town. So, while we were playing footsy debating each other 23 times, what was the other side doing? They were spending potentially hundreds of millions of dollars on data, technology, voter outreach. They're actually getting the job done. We were debating and bailing the Republican National Committee out of debt. I mean, that tells you a lot of the story. So if it gets to technology and all the work that we need to do there and opening our technology efforts up to an open source, setting up an office in the Silicon Valley, doing hack-a-thons across the country, This is going to be huge, Bob. And we're ready to go, and we're ready to go and we're ready to lead.

SCHIEFFER: All right, well we'll be watching. We'll be listening when you outline all of the details tomorrow on the speech I think at the National Press Club. Chairman, thanks so much. We'll be back in just a minute.)

SCHIEFFER: And we're back with some of the most knowledgeable people in the country when it comes to foreign policy, because all the news this week was not just in Rome and back here where congress debated what to do about the deficit. North Korea gave us a little news to be thinking about, some very serious things to think about. Danielle Pletka is vice president of the American Enterprise Institute. Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations. His upcoming book is, "Foreign Policy Begins at Home: The Case for Putting America's House in Order." David Sanger is the chief Washington correspondent of the New York Times. And David Rohde of Reuters is a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner. And I might add, one of the few people here at the table who has actually been a captive of the Taliban somewhere back there. So he has a little on-the-ground experience in dealing with this stuff. Let's just talk about this North Korean thing. David, what's happened? What's this all about?

DAVID SANGER, NEW YORK TIMES: You know, Bob, the North Korea as a problem is not new. The armistice was signed 60 years ago, and it's been an on-and-off thing ever since with violations and so forth. What is new is a new North Korean capability. They've now conducted a third nuclear test. And by all the early indications, this time it really worked. They have sent a missile as far as the Philippines. If you do the math on that, they're about halfway to being able to hit the continental United States. That is why you saw the Obama administration, which has not been a huge enthusiast in the past of antimissile defenses, say it was going to bolster the antimissile defense that's up in Alaska and in California.

SCHIEFFER: And this is no small step, we're talking spending what?

SANGER: Probably going to be a billion dollars.

SCHIEFFER: For a missile defense that won't be ready for what, three years.

SANGER: It will be supplementing. And of course they don't, the North Koreans will be able to hit the United States for a number of years. And remember, this is a missile defense that works fully half the time. When they've done tests against dummy warheads, it has a 53 percent hit rate. So it's not a perfect system by any means. But the idea here is not only to create some deterrents, but to make the point to the Chinese that if they can't get North Korea under control, they're going to begin to see a lot more U.S. forces not only in the Pacific but these missile defenses that the Chinese fear are also designed for them.

SCHIEFFER: Danielle, are we placing too much importance on this? Should we be as concerned as the administration seems to be when they send the secretary of defense out to announce we're going to spend $1 billion to try to make our missile defense better.

DANIELLE PLETKA, AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE: I think we should be more concerned. The problem for us is we've been disinvesting in missile defense. We've been disinvesting in the military. And just because a missile can't reach the United States, doesn't mean that it can't reach our allies in Asia who look to us for their security, are increasingly concerned that we're not going to be there for them in the event of a North Korean breakout or, frankly, a conflict with China. So I think we need to be doing a great deal more. And you're exactly right, part of this is deterrence, part of it is causing our adversaries to believe that we are serious. Up until now, and maybe even -- maybe even including now, they don't believe that.


RICHARD HAASS, PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL ON FOREIGN RELATIONS: Well, we ought to make clear to everybody that the next Korean War, if one were ever to happen, is going to be the last Korean War because it's going to end with a unified peninsula, and it's go to be under Seoul, not Pyongyang. And that will hopefully make the North Korean leadership think twice. Also, though, a lot of this message is aimed at Beijing. Probably three-quarter of North Korea's trade still transit Chinese territory. If there's any country that has the capacity not to control North Korea, but to influence North Korea, it's still China. The Chinese always say they have very little influence. They have more than they say they do. We should put pressure on them to do it and there's finally, Bob, we're seeing the first signs of a little bit of Chinese disaffection. At some point they're getting tired of the antics of this country. This is a dangerous ally for China to have. And the more Chinese can pressure them and put the economic screws on them, the better it will be for everybody.