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Sound of Sunday: Most intriguing quotes

By CNNPolitics.com
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Candy's post-game analysis
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Lawmakers debate whether tougher gun control laws are needed
  • "This is a psychiatric failure. It's not a political failure," psychiatrist says
  • Sen. Schumer says elected officials have an obligation to try to tone down the rhetoric
  • On 2012, Pawlenty says he'll decide and announce "sometime in the next few months"

(CNN) -- Here are some of the most notable sound bites from the Sunday morning shows:

On blaming political discourse for violent behavior:

"This is something we have to pay attention to. Look, as we're trying to piece together what happened in Arizona, unfortunately, people are going at the low-hanging fruit and they're blaming political discourse, which may have some role in the underlying aspects here, but we also need to look at there will be other things that come out -- the music, the video games, the social ways that people handle anger." -- Republican Rep. Tim Murphy, CNN's "State of the Union"

"I think that it's really a problem with mental illness, and lack of access, lack of services, and lack of engagement. I don't think that changing the tenor of political dialogue would have really made any difference in this situation." -- University of Maryland psychiatry professor Dr. Lisa Dixon, "State of the Union"

On the tone in Congress:

"I think what they need to do is to be straight and to be candid with people. Now, that doesn't mean to be nasty and vitriolic. I think that the two can be divided. Be straight. Be honest. Don't varnish it. But there is no reason to be nasty and vitriolic about it either." -- Republican Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, "Fox News Sunday"

"I think that violent discourse in political life, right, left or center, is wrong and should be rejected. But I do think we, as elected officials, have an obligation to try and tone that down. If we tone it down, then maybe the media will be less vociferous." -- Democratic Sen. Charles Schumer, NBC's "Meet the Press"

"So I think we need to be leaders by example, and when we do that, then hopefully we're going to be able to push the shock jocks and others outside our process to take a page from our book. And if we have a more productive civil discourse, then we can really live up to President Obama's words and Christina Taylor Green's dreams of her expectations for our democracy. We've got to lead by example." -- Democratic Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, CBS's "Face the Nation"

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"I think that we Republicans, and I think Democrats alike, will realize that if we tone down the rhetoric sometimes our debate is more effective from our own side. If you take a cue from the movie industry, you look at the top grossing movies, they're almost always PG or PG-13. It's better to have a more civil tone and a civil debate. And I think it behooves all of us to do so." -- Republican Rep. Jeff Flake, "Face the Nation"

On mental health policy:

"Unfortunately, it does not hit the radar scope in Washington or almost in any statehouse. And I can tell you, I've been on this for over 20-some odd years and it's always something you don't talk about, you don't discuss because of the stigma. And I think we need to address that heavily." -- Democratic Rep. Grace Napolitano, "State of the Union"

"I think the system failed miserably on it and I think Arizona has among the worst mental health services in the United States. ... So even if someone tried to get treatment for this fellow, it may or may not have succeeded in Arizona, because they have cut many of their outpatient services. This is true all over the United States." -- Dr. E. Fuller Torrey, psychiatrist, "State of the Union"

On revisiting gun laws:

"This is a psychiatric failure. It's not a political failure. It's a failure of our ability to provide basic care for people who have brain diseases, that are seriously mentally ill. If these people had kidney diseases we wouldn't stand for it. But they don't understand the brain well enough and we have completely failed them." -- Torrey, "State of the Union"

"There is a right to bear arms. It's in the Constitution. And you can't ignore it, just like you can't ignore the others. But like all the other rights, it's not absolute. ... And so to me, it's a vindication that smart, rational gun control laws that protect the right to bear arms, but have reasonable limits, are the way to go." -- Schumer, "Meet the Press"

"If you have somebody that is a criminal, that wants to get around the law, they're going to get around the law. The problem with gun laws is they limit the ability to defend yourself, one. But number two is that people who are going to commit a crime or going to do something crazy aren't going to pay attention to the laws in the first place." -- Republican Sen. Tom Coburn, "Meet the Press"

"It would seem to me that you'd address this with the most relevant problem first. The most relevant problem was the lack of an ability to deal with what was apparently paranoid schizophrenia that should have been treated. Then I would re-establish a situation of civility, which we seem to be doing, so we can talk to each other about gun laws without yelling at each other." -- Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, "Face the Nation"

"I think the nation's spirits would be lifted if the Congress acted quickly with the president and reinstated the assault weapons ban, which also had the ban on these large magazines, these clips that carried 30-plus bullets." -- Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania, "Face the Nation"

On repealing the health care legislation:

"First, we welcome, in a certain sense, (the Republicans') attempt to repeal it, because it gives us a second chance to make a first impression. ... We have the best health care system in the world and the most inefficient. And if we can work together on cutting those costs without damaging the good health care that people get, that's an area for bipartisan agreement, I think." -- Schumer, "Meet the Press"

"I think we ought to try to repeal it, because we ought to build the basis that we've gone in the wrong direction to solve the real problems in health care. The real problems in health care is it costs too much; and what we've expanded the coverage, but haven't worked on the cost." -- Coburn, "Meet the Press"

On running for president in 2012:

"Listen, I think every year you have as a governor in an executive position in a big state like New Jersey would make you better prepared to be president. And after one year as governor, I am not arrogant enough to believe that after one year as governor of New Jersey and seven years as the United States attorney that I'm ready to be president of the United States, so I'm not going to run." -- Christie, "Fox News Sunday"

"Well, I'm seriously considering it. I'm going to make that decision and announcement final sometime in the next few months. Two things. One is what does the country need and what do I bring to it? I think I've got a lot of experiences in those eight years as governor in Minnesota in a transformational way. And number two, it's a deeply personal decision. It has a lot of impact on not just me but my family. I want to make sure that they're understanding that burden and willing to shoulder some of that as well." -- Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, "Fox News Sunday"

On Republicans and Democrats sitting together at the "State of the Union" address:

"My colleague Sen. Mark Udall called for Democrats and Republicans to sit together at the State of the Union (speech). I called up Tom (Coburn) after he did that and he graciously agreed we're going to sit together." -- Schumer, "Meet the Press"

"Well, I think it's a symbol. And a symbol is a very good place to start. And so if we can actually come into that chamber and instead of me going to the left I go to the right and the Republicans do the opposite what you're going to create is an image of the Congress deciding that we are going to work as a body, not as two separate sides. That's a very good place to start." -- Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, "Face the Nation"

 
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