'This Week' Transcript: Sen. Marco Rubio; Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush

KARL: OK, so we're here now though. What would President Rubio do right now? Would you commit U.S. forces to -- to a no-fly zone?

RUBIO: First of all, if I was in charge of this issue, we never would have gotten to this point. We would have identified elements that we could have worked with, and we would have made sure that those elements, not the al Qaeda elements, were the best armed, best equipped and best trained. That being said, I think we need to continue to search for elements on the ground that we can work with, and we should try to do the best we can to increase their viability and their strength so that even when Assad falls, and we hope that he still will, they will be the ones on the ground with -- with the best ability to kind of manage a future, hopefully democratic Syria, and peaceful Syria.

KARL: Before we leave the Middle East, we obviously had a big election in Iran over the weekend. The most moderate candidate won. So let -- let me ask you this, is Iran under a President Rohani going to be potentially easier to deal with? Less of a threat than Iran under President Ahmadinejad?

RUBIO: First of all, moderate from -- by Iranian political standards is not what we could describe as moderate here in the West, but let me just say that I hope so, because the people of Iran do not want the future that their leaders have wanted. The people of Iran want to engage with the rest of the world, do not want to be isolated, don't want Iran going back to the 16th and 17th century. They'd like to be part of the 21st century. The people of Iran, and hopefully this will be a step in that direction.

But I'm not all that optimistic. At the end of the day, in order to have better relations, not just with the United States but with the world, Iran knows exactly what it needs to do. It needs to abandon its nuclear weapons ambitions, and it needs to pledge to walk away from these things. And unfortunately, this gentleman who was just elected is a strong supporter of the nuclear program and the nuclear weaponization as well. And so the bottom line is that that we are hopeful that that's the case, but at the end of the day, you know, the supreme leader calls the shots in Iran, and it's still the same supreme leader that has put Iran on this very dangerous track.

KARL: OK, I want to turn to immigration. You are one of the primary architects, author of the bill that came out of the Senate Judiciary Committee, immigration reform. I have a basic question for you, Senator. Do you support your own bill?

RUBIO: Well, obviously, I think it's an excellent starting point, and I think 95, 96 percent of the bill is in perfect shape and ready to go. But there are elements that need to be improved. This is how the legislative process is supposed to work. You offer an idea, you get public input and the input of your other colleagues. From these criticisms or observations come out new ideas about how to make it better, and of course you can't ignore that. Those things need to be addressed. And we have the opportunity to do that now, in particular on the border security element.

Page
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
  • |
  • 4
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...