This morning on "Starting Point," fmr. New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani reflects on the anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks, and weighs in on whether marking the anniversary has changed in significance over the years. .
"It's only natural that as time goes by, it might not be as long or it might not be as intense, I mean people have to move on with their lives and they do," Giuliani says. "But I think there always has to be a remembrance of what happened on this day forever and certainly now, because it's not over yet. I mean, this is not a memorial, really. Pearl Harbor is a memorial. This is an ongoing war against us by Islamic extremist terrorists who want to come here this very day and do exactly the same thing they did 11 years ago and what they did in 1993. We're fortunate that we've stopped about 40 of these attacks. Meaning the government stopped 40 of these attacks, most of it by really good work, and every once in awhile by just dumb luck like the attack in Detroit at Christmas Day two years ago."
Giuliani also weighs in on the delay of the completion of the memorial. “I'm upset that the memorial isn't done yet...I hope it gets done. Somebody's got to feel a sense of urgency about this. I do. I was here. I saw it happen. I have a sense of urgency about it. I wish everybody else that's involved in this would have that same sense.”
On the teacher strike in Chicago, Giuliani adds, “[Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s] bargaining for exactly the right things. He's asking to be able to evaluate, if there's a difference between good teachers and bad teachers. That seems almost common sense in 21st Century America. Why teachers should be worried about having their managers evaluate them. Every worker in America has their managers evaluate them. Every professional does. So I think he's - what he's trying to do is to try to get that whole union turned around to worrying about the children. Not worrying about themselves and how they're going to be evaluated…. I hope he wins.”
Giuliani also weighed in on the latest CNN-ORC poll numbers, showing President Obama received a slight 'bounce' after the political conventions.
"I think Mitt Romney is in good shape. I mean, the fact is, most important thing that happened last week, not all the speeches, it was the fact that our unemployment rate is still over 8 percent. The number of people off the rolls is catastrophic, 368,000 people and this is the 43rd month that President Obama has given us eight-plus percent unemployment. He wants a second chance. I don't think they're going to give him a second chance to screw up our economy as badly as he did the first time," he says.
Health officials announced Monday that the government will now cover the treatment for 58 forms of cancer that can be linked to toxins that residents and rescue workers were exposed to at Ground Zero. On the 11th anniversary of September 11, 2001, Rep. Peter King (R-NY), who co-authored the Zadroga Act to help ailing 9/11 responders, discusses the law and the delays in getting it passed.
“The whole situation is inexcusable. It shouldn’t have taken 5 years to pass the Zadroga Bill in the first place,” King says. “It was so obvious that these forms of cancer came from what happened here at Ground Zero. We have young men and women in their 30s and 40s, in the peak of their life, coming down with these rare forms of blood cancer, these rare diseases.”
“Now we have really another struggle ahead of us,” he adds. “Because these 52 forms of cancer are covered, but the amount of money in the fund has not been increased. We have to find ways to increase that fund. It’s our moral obligation to stand by those who put their lives on the line, not just on 9/11, but in the days, weeks, and months following 9/11.”
This morning, memorial ceremonies across the country will commemorate the 2,997 lives lost in the Sept. 11th attacks. For many of those mourners, a chance to move forward was reached last night. A dispute that had stalled construction of that 9/11 museum at Ground Zero appears to be settled with a new deal finally in the works.
On "Starting Point," New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg explains why it's so important to always mark the 9/11 anniversary.
"If you're a family member, I don't think you've forgotten at all and my job is to make sure that those who didn't lose a relative don't forget. Our freedoms are fragile and if we forget, somebody will come again and try to take them away from us," Mayor Bloomberg says. "That's why we have the museum and the memorial, to make sure that people understand that what we take for granted, we shouldn't be taking for granted. And we have young men and women who are willing to fight overseas and work on the streets of our cities to keep us safe and, hopefully, they will be in the next generation will want to do the same thing. It's up to us to explain to them why."
He also addresses the question of why it took so long to complete the 9/11 museum at Ground Zero. "We've been working on this for, let's say, 11 years and the Senator Inowye from Hawaii said to me it took 40 years to build the museum and memorial for World War II," he says. "There was never any question that we were going to finish the museum. Governors Christie and Cuomo were 100 percent committed to it, but everybody has their responsibilities and they want to make sure that their interests are protected."
Bloomberg also said there would be a fee to enter the museum to maintain the space.
Bloomberg also weighs in on the Chicago teacher labor strike, which enters its second day today with no sign of a deal.
"I'm not familiar with what's going on there, other than what I read in the papers. Mayor Emanuel is trying very hard to do what's right for the students. That's his responsibility. The union's responsibility is to protect their members, to get the best working conditions, the most money and the fewest hours. And that's fine, nothing wrong with that whatsoever. So they'll continue to do that here in the city. We work with the union and we are committed to making sure that our children get an education that they are going to need," he says.
"Our school system should not be run by the people that work there. Our school system should be run for the students," he adds.