Rudy Giuliani photo

Interview with Marc Bernier

September 05, 2007

MAYOR GIULIANI: "[We need to ensure that every] part of America is prepared for natural disaster and terrorist attack, from our smallest town to our biggest city; we can no longer allow any part of America to be vulnerable because we're in difficulty at the point of our least preparation. So the federal government has to help all these state and local law enforcement officers to be and firefighters and emergency workers to be prepared [for emergencies] and to help them do it. It's their job ultimately, it's the job of state and local first responders and first preventers but the federal government should be there supporting them, helping them and giving them the training, giving them the regional networks of intelligence and assistance that they're going to need."

MARC BERNIER: "Mayor Giuliani during your administration would you want to keep Homeland Security as we have it? The reason I ask is there was a report that came out last week that doesn't really prove the point that creating a Homeland Security Department has done a heck of a lot more to protect the American people. What's your reaction to that story?"

GIULIANI: "Well, my reaction to that is we should make it work … Homeland Security needs two things to happen effectively. One is to centralize one function more and the other is to decentralize. The function of patrolling the borders of the United States, with customs and immigration and Coast Guard in the same agency, that makes sense. … But with regards to helping the state and local government law enforcement they've really got to decentralize. They've got to get money down to the local firefighters and the local police officers and the local emergency workers and I think the best thing to do is to make it work more effectively and not just start thinking about another big major reorganization. It takes a lot of energy to do those reorganizations. I find the best thing to do is to actually solve the problem rather than to reorganize." …

BERNIER: "Tomorrow in New Hampshire … What do you hope that you are able to get across to the American people tomorrow in still another of these series of debates?"

GIULIANI: "I hope [to be] able to explain a few more of these positions I began this summer by making Twelve Commitments to the American People. We have each week, or just about each week, tried to explain those in more detail whether it's remaining on offense in the Terrorist[s'] War on Us or it's becoming energy independent or it's ending illegal immigration. Or today, I discussed insuring that every community in America is prepared for terrorist attacks and natural disasters. So I see these debates as you can't, no one of them gives you enough time to explain everything but each one of them gives you time to focus on one or two of these things. And we are trying to run the most issue-orientated campaign out of anyone. I think we have done that so far and we want to continue to do that." …

Rudy Giuliani, Interview with Marc Bernier Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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