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Public Statements

NBC "Meet the Press" - Transcript

Interview

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GREGORY: Congresswoman, mission accomplished then, right? If you've battered his image as the Democratic Chair, and also, you know, affiliated with the Obama campaign, been a keen focus on tearing down Mitt Romney. Fair?

REP. DEBBIE WASSERMAN SCHULTZ (D-FL): David, first let me just say as a Floridian that I want to commend the Republicans, my counterpart Reince Priebus. We know here in Florida in Hurricane Alley that we make plans and God laughs. So it's good that-- that they've made the decision to put safety first and we want to make sure that everybody, our visitors and guests, as well as our residents stay safe. But, you know, I mean, I think the words redo, reintroduce, are-- are-- are just code words for what we expect, no matter how long the convention is, to be a convention reinvention. I mean this is the big ektch-a-sketch-- etch-a-sketch moments for-- for Mitt Romney, and they're going to do their best, because not only has he not connected, but he's alienated large groups of important voters that are going to be important to determine whether or not we can continue to have a president in the White House who fights for the middle class and working families, or whether we have a president that Mitt Romney proposes to be, to take us back to the failed policies of the past that nearly crashed our economy, and that would focus our economic policies on millionaires and billionaires, and people who are already doing really well, make sure they can do even better. That-- that's not the direction that we need to go. We need to continue to make progress.

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GREGORY: Well, and this is the battle over immigration and tone that has frankly alienated a lot of Hispanic voters, if you do look at the polls which is an opening for the Democrats politically. You no doubt want to keep a focus not only on Romney but on problems you see with the party, whether he's really in control of the party.

REP. WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: Well, I think Todd Akin's outrageous comments and Mitt Romney's position on immigration and, you know, he's really the most extreme candidate for president in modern times on immigration that we've seen, give you a window into the soul of the Republican Party. I mean, it's not just that Todd Akin-- Akin made some really outrageous comments. It's that Mitt Romney chose a candidate for vice president who co-sponsored legislation that would narrow dramatically the definition of rape to only mean forcible rape.

Their platform embraces a human life amendment with no exceptions for rape, incest or the life of the mother. On immigration, while President Obama has made it a priority to rapidly, and significantly increase border security, particularly on the southwest border in-- in the governor's home state, he's also focused on making sure that we don't ignore the fact that we have 12 million undocumented immigrants who are an important component of our economy, and who we're-- we're hurting our future if we don't recognize that this should be a comprehensive immigration reform approach to dealing with them, instead of allowing-- instead of Mitt Romney's approach, which just says let's just have those 12 million self deport. It's an unrealistic and extreme position.

GREGORY: But-- by talking-- Mike, the challenge, if I can is still, how are you going to, you know, get beyond these base issues for the party. Is it a window into the soul of the party? Is it the Congress--

MR. MURPHY: No, no, look, here's the rule of Republican platform, nobody reads it. I've been in this business 28 years. I've never read the darn thing. I did read the Democratic platform by the way last night because we've been talking a lot about platforms. It promised to close Guantanamo Bay, comprehensive immigration reform in the first year in office and a lot of other stuff they haven't achieved. Ban assault weapons, the list goes on.

REP. WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: It's not about achievement. It's about what you're committing to.

MR. MURPHY: Well, committed to and failed to deliver, another reason not to reelect Barack Obama. But back to-- back to your question.

REP. WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: It was the Republicans in Congress who actually prevented that from happening.

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REP. WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: Well, as-- as a mom with three young kids, and a woman who understands that when it comes to economic policy women want to make sure that we have a President in the White House who's committed to investing in our children's future, like President Obama has, committing to-- committed to investing in education, in innovation, in making sure that in America everyone has an opportunity to succeed so that, you know, your kids can live the American dream. Mitt Romney, his policies would increase taxes on the middle class, make life much more economically challenging for women. Would do that to pay for-- for budget busts and tax breaks for the wealthyÂ…

GREGORY: But-- but the record is tough. I mean the facts and how people feel are tough.

REP. WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: But like you said-- like you said, David, it's a-- it-- that-- that six-point advantage in one poll is very narrow because women understand that not only would Mitt Romney's policies not make them better off, but he also has an extreme policy, set of policies, on their reproductive rights, on the-- the things that are important to them to make sure that their children have an opportunity to be successful.

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