John Ashcroft's Exit Interview

JENNINGS: Has it been unpleasant for you, at various times, to have people make fun of your faith? And the fact that you bring your faith very actively and very openly to the work place?

ASHCROFT: My religion is not that people would do things by imposition; it's that they would do things by choice, so it's against my religion to impose my religion. And it's been my job to protect the right of people to criticize me, whether it's (laughs) my religion or whether it's my politics.

JENNINGS: How do you feel about giving up public service?

ASHCROFT: Well, I really am grateful. I've spent about 30 years in jobs of public responsibility, and it's been a privilege. It's a privilege to serve any time. Frankly, I think it's a greater privilege to serve in tough times, when you have significant challenges that mean a lot to the safety and security of the people you serve. I think I'll miss it in a lot of respects.

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