'This Week' Transcript: Crisis in the Classroom

GHARIB: Well, you know, let me just say, what the Wall Street view on this whole election thing is, is that it's all coming down to jobs. And so if the unemployment rate gets up to double digits -- and we're getting really close, we're almost at 10 percent -- that that's going to make it very difficult for incumbents. It's going to be more about the job market.

And so the markets are already pricing in a Republican win in the House and maybe a pickup of 15 seats in the Senate, and this is going to lead to, you know, some kind of gridlock.

AMANPOUR: Let's move on -- did you want to say something before we go to Katrina, which is also close to your heart?

BRAZILE: Well, it's very close to my heart, and it's still the story that makes me very emotional. But Wall Street at some point needs to pick up the ball and start playing, because up until this point, most Americans understand that they caused many of the problems, but they're not helping.

AMANPOUR: And earlier, previously on this program, we actually talked about how much profits that actually businesses and Wall Street have been making, but it's not going back into investments and hiring and spending. So that's also, obviously, to be discussed.

But let's go on to Katrina. Five years later, the pictures none of us can forget. I was there. Were you there when it happened?

BRAZILE: No, I wasn't...

(CROSSTALK)

AMANPOUR: But your family certainly was. And, obviously, it's taken a lot of time, a lot of money to restore it. what are your feelings today, Donna?

BRAZILE: Well, you know, it's mixed. It's been a mixed recovery, the largest reconstruction in American history. And yet there are some neighborhoods, some communities that have not come back. Many of the people who left thinking that they could return simply has been unable, because it's a different city.

While you see more tourists than ever, the restaurants are back, there are still many Americans who simply cannot afford to regain their foot back in the city.

It's been a blessing in other ways. Many people have found a new path to living elsewhere. And I've seen people come back really invigorated. They're resilient, they're strong, but we're still not there yet.

WILL: The population of New Orleans today is about 355,000. That means it's about 100,000 down from what it was and that probably the population today actually fits the economic capacity of the city better than it did then.

Furthermore, one of the problems of New Orleans was a calamitous public education system. They had three charters before Katrina. They got 51 now. A majority of the children are in charter schools because the state stepped in, took over the education system, and it's much better for that.

AMANPOUR: And the government's just put in $1.8 billion, also, to replace some of those destroyed schools.

GHARIB: I think one little insight into the revival of what's going on in New Orleans is that -- what's going on at Tulane University. You remember that Tulane had to shut down at the time of Katrina. And now we're hearing that this year they got 44,000 applications for 16,000 slots of freshmen, four times what it was pre-Katrina, and the dean says it was more than what's -- you know, the number of applications were more than what Yale got.

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