Mitchell Reports | January 29, 2013
>> is the chair of the democratic national committee and joining us from florida. what a beautiful setting. congresswoman, thank you very much. are we wrong to be taking so much, let's say, optimism out of these reports and out of seeing john mccain and chuck schumer today and just the bipartisan support coming out of the senate? what is the prospect in the house?
>> i mean, it is good to see that the principles broadly embraced by a bipart sfwlan group of united states senators are really in line with what president obama has been calling for, you know, really all the way through his first term. and i think president obama 's advocacy and his focus on the need for comprehensive immigration reform during his campaign really created the space for and quite frankly the outcome of the election created this space for this bipartisan cooperation, but, you know, i want to give you a healthy but. there is, you know, the road is littered with gangs of senators, good intentions that were consumed by the legislative process , and, you know, what i'm hopeful about in the house is certainly that the majority of democrats in the house embrace comprehensive immigration reform and the principles that were put forward by the gang of eight, and i'm confident when president obama talks about it today it will be similar. but the question is will the speaker who is dealing with still his group of really extreme republicans who have already signalled not very good comments about the proposal, you know, will he eventually let the will of the house work , the whole house, rather than the majority of the majority. that's really still in question.
>> senator marco rubio is carrying a lot of water on this. he went to the lion's den to mix metaphors with rush let me bah today to try to sell it.
>> the president will be in las vegas today. i know for you boarder security is the first and last. if that doesn't happen, none of the rest does, right?
>> well, not just that. that alone is not enough. it has to be a combin's. we have border security . we need workplace enforcement. we need a visa tracking system . 40% of our illegal immigrants of our undocumented people in this country, they didn't cross the border. they came legally. their visa expired, and they stayed. we don't track people when they leave. we only track them when they come in. all three of those things have to happen. the language of the bill has not even been drafted yet. these are just principles. this is going to be a challenge if, in fact, this bill does not have real triggers in there, and in essence, there is not language in this bill that guarantees that nothing else will happen unless these enforcement mechanisms are in place. i won't support it.
>> so the real issue now is what's going to happen in the house. president obama has made this a top priority , so we are seeing a very, you know, big push coming from the white house . the other thing that he has done that is very unusual is sitting down with an interview with hillary clinton . a thank you interview for her service. what happens next? what is that signal, if anything, to joe biden , for instance?
>> well, i don't think it's signalling anything. there's not a lot that should be read into that, except that secretary clinton is being honored for her remarkable service. it's so well deserved. now she has earned the well deserved rest that i know she will -- that she's looking forward to, and, you know, we'll hear more about her plans as she develops them herself, but let me just go back to the border security issue and cracking down on employers on immigration reform . you know, we -- it shouldn't be lost on americans that we have actually under president obama deployed more border security patrol than we've ever had, and more crackdown on employers who are illegally hiring undocumented workers and creating an ease for that process to continue, so clearly president obama has made that a priority, and any legislation that we pass that's comprehensive is going to need to include that. the principles that the senators have laid out are sound and, you know, hopefully because the president is going to really use the bully pulpit and intends to make sure that he stumps for comprehensive immigration reform . that's going to create some pressure on some of the most conservative house republicans who clearly need to look at the 71% of hispanic voters that voted for president obama and, you know, i am okay with whatever reason is their motivation for supporting comprehensive immigration reform as long as they support it, but the jury is still out for sure.
>> before i let you go, josh green is reporting on bloomberg business week that the obama supporters, finance chairs, past chairs out in california, and elsewhere for obama helped last month retire hillary clinton 's 2008 debt. not an easy prospect because they had to find people who had not macked out to her in 2008 and had not macked out federally in 2012 , so they put together a coalition and ended up giving her a surplus now, not a campaign debt. that's a very nice thank you as well.
>> well, there is so much goodwill for secretary clinton and the work that she's done over the last four years. i mean, she's one of the -- she is one of the most admired women in the world, and, you know, as i traveled the country for the last 18 months, the goodwill that people expressed from obama supporters to just rank-and-file americans really was remarkable, and so it's not surprising that she would inspire that kich confidence and, you know, kind of gives her a clean slate to move forward as she ponders what she's going to do next, but really it should be stressed that i think what secretary clinton is most looking forward to is resting. you know, putting her feet up. she's the most traveled secretary of state in history, and he's done a remarkable job helping president obama take us from where we really had a diplomatic reputation that was -- and relationships that were in tatters when before he took office to now thanks to her leadership and president obama 's leadership and the incredible team that they were along with vice president biden that they had restored america's relationships and our rightful place as a leader on the global stage.
>> thank you very much. democratic chair debbie wasserman schultz . next