Notable comments made during the powerhouse roundtable Sunday on “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” are below. Guests included ABC News political analyst Matthew Dowd; Univision anchor Jorge Ramos; Nobel Prize-winning economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman; former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina; and Republican Rep. Lou Barletta of Pennsylvania.
Krugman weighs in on the NRA
KRUGMAN: No, there are plenty of gun-owners who are fine. But the lobbying groups, the NRA is now revealed as an insane organization, and that matters quite a lot.
Ramos, Barletta, and Krugman debate the cost of illegal immigration
RAMOS: Let me say something: It is a myth that the border is not secure…the citizens along the border with Mexico are among the safest. So if you wait to do something until the border is completely secure, I don’t know exactly what are you talking about.
STEPHANOPOULOS: You get the last word.
BARLETTA: Yeah, well, actually, we have a couple of problems here. Number one, 40 percent of all the people who are in this country illegally didn’t cross the border. They came here on a visa that expired and disappeared into our system, and we can’t track them.
Number two, one thing that we’re missing in this whole debate about illegal immigration is the cost. Heritage Foundation did a study that, after the taxes are realized by our country by those who are here illegally, it will cost us $2.6 trillion in Medicare, Social Security…
KRUGMAN: It’s pocket — the net cost of all of this is pocket change. It’s really a very small number.
Barletta and Krugman debate gun proposals
BARLETTA: Yeah. I am. I mean, this is a perfect example why people believe Washington is broke. This horrific incident in Newtown, and here, what is our debate? It’s focusing on guns, when there is not one person at this table who really believes that that’s the root of what happened there. And when we have people that get into the mindset that they want to harm people, as a former mayor, I know people will get guns no matter what laws we pass, just like the illegal drug…
KRUGMAN: … just caught you on a false statement there, because at least I do believe that guns are the root. There are crazy people everywhere, but mass murders are a lot more common here than in countries with effective gun control.
BARLETTA: If you believe guns are more important than — than dealing with mental health and our culture — is our culture lending itself that we’re raising children that are desensitized to — to murder, to killing people?
KRUGMAN: I love that the international differences — countries that have effective gun control have a lot fewer incidents.
BARLETTA: Would banning spoons stop obesity? Of course not.
Ramos is concerned Hagel’s performance could put him ‘in trouble’
RAMOS: The votes are there, definitely. I think he’s going to make it. But if you have to clarify your clarification, you’re in trouble, no? Obviously, I mean, if we compare, for instance, what he went through with what Hillary Clinton did with the Benghazi hearings, it’s like completely two different perspectives. Now Hillary Clinton was strong and solid and getting ready for 2016. At the same time, Chuck Hagel, he seemed timid, tentative, and — you don’t want — you don’t want that.