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60 MINUTES OVERTIME
Rex Tillerson on working with Jared Kushner
Rex Tillerson opens up in rare, wide-ranging interview
The normally private secretary of state talks with 60 Minutes about his life, his relationship with
the President, and his efforts to bring North Korea to the bargaining table
2018
Feb 18
BY
Margaret Brennan
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Rex Tillerson admits he was an unconventional choice for secretary of state. He had no prior
government experience, but as CEO of Exxon-Mobil, he had crisscrossed the globe striking
deals with foreign leaders. Secretary Tillerson - a man who still considers himself a Boy Scout
and follows what he calls "the Code of the West" - is fiercely private and has shied away from
interviews. But he agreed to do a rare, wide-ranging one with us.
With the Olympics underway and North Korea very much on his mind, he talked to us about
what may be the toughest deal he will ever work on.
rex-ws-intv-1.jpg
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson CBS NEWS
Margaret Brennan: In his New Year's Day speech Kim Jong Un said the entire area of the U.S.
mainland is within our nuclear strike range. That's gotta make you nervous.
Rex Tillerson: It does make us nervous. It-- it also-- it also stiffens our resolve. That kind of a
threat to the American people by a regime like this is not acceptable. And the president's
meeting his responsibilities as commander in chief of asking our military, Secretary Mattis at
the Defense Department, to ensure we are prepared for anything.
"We're not using a carrot to convince them to talk. We're using large sticks."
Margaret Brennan: And those military options are there in case you fail.
Rex Tillerson: In case I fail. I say to my Chinese counterpart, "You and I fail these people get to
fight. That's not what we want."
Margaret Brennan: But you are willing to work with and potentially negotiate with Kim Jong
Un.
Rex Tillerson: Well, that's who we will have to work with to achieve this diplomatically. What
we have to determine now is are we even ready to start? Are they ready to start? And if they're
not, we'll just keep the pressure campaign underway and we will increase that pressure. And we
are doing that every month. There are new sanctions rolled out. The world wants North Korea to
change.
Margaret Brennan: Well, there's some questions about how badly China wants them to change.
You've really needed their help to put economic pressure on Kim Jong Un. What reassurances
have you given to China so that they actually follow through?
Rex Tillerson: What I think-- we got a common understanding with China is that North Korea
represents a serious threat to China as well. And we've been very clear with them that they are
going to have an important role to play once we get to the negotiating table.
Margaret Brennan: So I-- I hear you saying there-- these wouldn't be one on one talks. China
would be at the table.
Rex Tillerson: Early on they might be one on one discussions for the U.S. first and North Korea
to determine is there a reason to begin to put the construct for negotiations in place.
Margaret Brennan: What is the carrot that you're dangling for North Korea to convince them to
talk?
Rex Tillerson: We're not using a carrot to convince them to talk. We're using large sticks. And
that is what they need to understand. This pressure campaign is putting-- is having its bite on
North Korea, its revenue streams. It's having a bite on its military programs.
Margaret Brennan: But to say full denuclearization, why would they agree to give up something
they've already got that they think is an insurance policy?
Rex Tillerson: Because it buys them nothing. It buys them more of being the hermit kingdom,
isolated, isolated from the world diplomatically, isolated from the world economically.
Margaret Brennan: Senator Bob Corker, chairman of Senate Foreign Relations Committee said
"Every one of us should pray Rex Tillerson and Jim Mattis are successful over the course of the
next eight to ten months, diplomatically, or our nation is going to be facing one of the greatest
military decisions that we face." Eight to ten months. That's how much time you have to get this
done?
Rex Tillerson: I'm gonna use all the time available to me our diplomatic efforts will continue
until that first bomb drops. My job is to never have a reason for the first bomb to drop And we
don't know precisely how much time is left on the clock.
rex-side-shot-intv-1.jpg
Contributor Margaret Brennan interviews Secretary of State Rex Tillerson CBS NEWS
Margaret Brennan: You seem to have convinced the president that diplomacy is the way to go
on this. But it wasn't always so clear. Back in October, you said you were working to get a
dialogue going with the North Koreans and the president tweeted, "Rex, stop wasting your time
trying to negotiate with little rocket man." Have you asked him not to call him little rocket man?
Is that a diplomatic term?
Rex Tillerson: The president's going to-- the president's gonna communicate the way he
communicates. My job as chief diplomat is to ensure that the North Koreans know we keep our
channels open, I'm listening. I'm not sending a lotta messages back 'cause there's nothing to say
to them at this point. So I'm listening for you to tell me you're ready to talk.
Margaret Brennan: How will you know?
Rex Tillerson: They will tell me. They will tell me.
Margaret Brennan: That explicitly?
Rex Tillerson: We-- we receive messages from them And I think it will be very explicit as to
how we want to have that first conversation.
As we saw during a meeting with top aides about the crisis in Yemen, the whole world is now
his portfolio, but Rex Wayne Tillerson comes from a family of modest means in North Texas.
He was named after actors Rex Allen and John Wayne, because his parents loved Westerns.
Margaret Brennan: We actually have a photo of you back in your Boy Scout uniform. I
understand you rose to Eagle Scout?
Rex Tillerson: Yes.
Margaret Brennan: So how old were you here?
Rex Tillerson: I think I was 14 when that was taken.
Margaret Brennan: You look very proud.
Rex Tillerson: I am very proud. And was very proud. I still am.
Margaret Brennan: I can tell-- I mean, Boy Scouts, you reference it a fair amount. That played a
big, formative role in your life.
Rex Tillerson: It really shaped who I am.
Margaret Brennan: You still think of yourself as a Boy Scout?
Rex Tillerson: Yes.
Margaret Brennan: Really?
Rex Tillerson: Absolutely.
Margaret Brennan: You don't get to be the CEO of Exxon Mobile as a Boy Scout.
Rex Tillerson: I did.
Margaret Brennan: You talked a lot about something that you call the Code of the West. What
does that mean?
Rex Tillerson: Well, you know the Code of the West, as the West was unfolding there wasn't a
lot of law enforcement. And people basically relied upon each other's word. And "My word is
my bond." And I've used that throughout my life as well, even at Exxon Mobil. I would sit down
with the head of state for that country or the CEO of that company and we'd look each other in
the eye. And I'd say, all I need to know is that you're gonna live up to your side of this deal. And
I give you my word I'll live up to my side of this deal. And then a lotta the Code of the West
was people were very loyal to their organizations. And the phrase, "Riding for the brand" is a
phrase that's always stuck with me that--
Margaret Brennan: Riding for the brand?
Rex Tillerson: Riding for the brand. When a cowboy signed on to a ranch or-- or to that
organization, he was committed to that organization.
Margaret Brennan: And what is the brand for you now?
Rex Tillerson: The State Department of the United States government. The American people are
my brand.
tillerson-horse.jpg
Tillerson and friends at his Texas ranch in 2017. REX TILLERSON
Margaret Brennan: So one leader you hadn't met before December of 2016 was Donald Trump.
Tell me what that first encounter was like.
Rex Tillerson: We met in his office in Trump Tower. And-- he just began by askin' me, you
know, "I want you to just kinda talk about how-- how you see the world." So we just-- we
walked around the world for about an hour. And then after that-- He kinda went into a little bit
of a sales pitch with me and said, "I want you to be my secretary of state." And I was stunned.
Margaret Brennan: You didn't know it was a job interview?
Rex Tillerson: No, I didn't. I didn't. I-- I thought it was just-- I was goin' up just to talk to him
and share with him, which I've done with previous presidents. I did with President Obama, I did
with President Bush. So I really thought that's all it was.
Margaret Brennan: Do you have any sense of what you were getting yourself into?
Rex Tillerson: By and large-- I did.
"You know, the only person that knows whether I'm resigning or not is me."
Margaret Brennan: You've won some policy arguments. When it came to keeping troops in
Afghanistan. You prevented the president, in some ways, from tearing up the Iran nuclear deal,
like you said he was going to do. You lost a few arguments too. The Paris Climate Agreement,
the president exited. The Trans-Pacific Trade Partnership, you cautioned against ripping up a
deal America had committed to, and you cautioned against moving the U.S. embassy to
Jerusalem on the timeline they laid out. Do you think that's a fair accounting of your record?
Rex Tillerson: I think the American people have won with the decisions the president has taken.
And it's not about agreeing or disagreeing. Because he's-- he's the decision maker.
Margaret Brennan: Tell me what it's like to work in an administration where the U.S. has
walked away, or threatened to walk away from a number of commitments. That has to be hard
for someone who believes in the Code of the West.
Rex Tillerson: Well some of those, I think it's important to keep in mind what the level of
commitment was. We have agreements that the Congress never had the opportunity to weigh in
on. And so President Trump was elected by the American people, and many of these were issues
that he ran on.
In the past year, Tillerson spent a lot of time denying that he was being outflanked by others in
the president's inner circle, and that he was either going to resign or be fired after reports he
called the president "a moron."
Margaret Brennan: Why didn't you deny calling the president a moron?
Rex Tillerson: You know, that's a really old question.
Margaret Brennan: You understand that by not answering the question, some people thought
you were confirming the story.
Rex Tillerson: I think I've answered the question.
Margaret Brennan: You think you answered the question.
Rex Tillerson: I've answered the question.
Margaret Brennan: Did you call the president a moron?
Rex Tillerson: I'm not gonna dignify the question. We got so many bigger issues that we could
be talking about. I'm not from this town. I understand this town likes to talk about a lot of things
that are really not important.
Margaret Brennan: Do you think you have enemies in this town?
Rex Tillerson: I don't know.
Margaret Brennan: Where do you think those reports came from? That you were resigning, or
being fired?
Rex Tillerson: I-- I-- I have no idea where they come from. I really don't. And I don't give it
much thought.
Margaret Brennan: I mean, you walk into ministry meetings and reporters are shouting, "Sir,
when are you resigning?"
Rex Tillerson: I never hear those questions. You know, the only person that knows whether I'm
resigning or not is me.
Margaret Brennan: So one of the other challenges that you have here-- is sometimes the
president's message doesn't jive with your own. I think you'd acknowledge that.
Rex Tillerson: Well, as I said, the president communicates in his own style, his own way, his
own words. And from time to time I will ask him, "Are you changin' the policy? Because if we
are, obviously I need to know, and everyone needs to know."
Margaret Brennan: Well you would've thought he'd talk to you about changing the policy before
he tweeted.
Rex Tillerson: And-- and to finish the thought, that has never happened. Every time I've talked
to him he says, "No, the policy hasn't changed." And I say let-- then I'm good. That's all I need
to know.
rex-meeting-1.jpg
Within the ranks of the State Department, there have been complaints Secretary Tillerson is
dismantling American diplomacy by embracing major budget cuts, and being slow to fill crucial
jobs.
Margaret Brennan: There are 41 embassies without confirmed ambassadors and that's even in
places where there are crises. No ambassador in South Korea, Saudi Arabia, in Turkey. How do
you explain that?
Rex Tillerson: Well, there's been no dismantling at all of the State Department. We've got
terrific-- people, both foreign service officers, civil servants, that have stepped into those roles
around the world--
Margaret Brennan: On an interim--
Rex Tillerson: --and have stepped in--
Margaret Brennan: --basis.
Rex Tillerson: --here. It is an interim basis. So clearly, it is not with the same kind of support
that I wish everyone had. But our foreign policy objectives continue to be met.
Margaret Brennan: But some of these don't even have nominees. I mean 41 embassies without
ambassadors in them.
Rex Tillerson: Well, some of these are in the process. It's not a question of people being…are
neglecting the importance of it. It's just the nature of the process itself.
"I'm here to serve my country. I committed to this president. My word is my bond."
Margaret Brennan: You've said you had a very close relationship with Vladimir Putin. You've
done huge deals with him. Photos of you toasting him with champagne. And all that closeness
raised eyebrows It even inspired a Saturday Night Live skit. Did you ever see that skit?
Rex Tillerson: I did. My kids pointed me to it.
Margaret Brennan: Did you laugh?
Rex Tillerson: Absolutely. Absolutely. I laughed out loud.
Margaret Brennan: What-- it-- it made light though of-- of this concern that you have-- a
friendship with Vladimir Putin and that because of that you and the president aren't going to
hold him to account.
Rex Tillerson: The relationship that I had with President Putin spans 18 years now It was always
about What could I do to be successful on behalf of my shareholders, how Russia could
succeed.
Margaret Brennan: How different was it walking into the Kremlin as secretary of state?
Rex Tillerson: It was different-- because-- and I had to think very, very h-- carefully about that,
And the only thing I said to him was "Mr. President, same man, different hat."
Margaret Brennan: But the dynamic changed.
Rex Tillerson: The dynamic changed because the issues were different. What he is representing
is different than what I now represent. And I-- and I said to him, "I now represent the American
people." And-- and I think it was important that that be said right up front. And he clearly got, I
mean, he clearly understood that as well.
Margaret Brennan: But since you're secretary of state now you've accused him of violating
nuclear arms control agreements, of cheating on North Korea sanctions, letting Assad continue
now to use chlorine gas chemical weapons on civilians. He doesn't seem to be particularly
concerned about the warnings you're giving him.
Rex Tillerson: Well, I don't know. We'll see if he's concerned or not.
Margaret Brennan: There were six chlorine gas attacks in the past 30 days.
Rex Tillerson: That's correct. And we have called them out for the fact that Russia has special
responsibilities, in our view, because of commitments they made, to destroy chemical weapons
and ensure they knew that there were none.
Margaret Brennan: That sounds a lot like the last administration. That doesn't sound very
different.
Rex Tillerson: Well, when it comes to killing people with chemical weapons It shouldn't look
any different. I think the only difference is the consequences for it. And President Trump has
already demonstrated there will be consequences.
Margaret Brennan: Does that mean military action is still on the table for chlorine gas attacks?
Rex Tillerson: As it was in April last year, we are serious about our demands that chemical
weapons not become regularized or normalized as a-- as a weapon in any conflict.
Margaret Brennan: Why not implement the sanctions that Congress overwhelmingly says they
wanna see put on Russia?
Rex Tillerson: We have and we are we've taken steps that have already prevented a number of
Russian military sales as a result of the legislation. And we are evaluating additional individuals
for-- for-- possible sanctioning.
img-1066.jpg
Rex Tillerson speaks with contributor Margaret Brennan KYLIE ATWOOD
Near the end of our interview, we were interrupted by a phone call from the president.
Afterward, the secretary took us out for a brief stroll on his terrace before heading to the White
House.
Margaret Brennan: How often do you talk to the president?
Rex Tillerson: We typically'll try to talk every day, even if it's only for a few minutes. A lotta
times, I'll call from the-- the road when I'm on a trip just to let him know how it's going.
Rex Tillerson enjoys the view from the top of the State Department, he seems to be one of the
few people in Washington not surprised he's still here.
Margaret Brennan: If I believe the press reports that came out about you in the past year, you
would not be sitting here talking to me as the secretary of state. It seems like reports of your
political death were premature?
Rex Tillerson: Well I hope with this little bit of exchange we've had you understand the man
better. That's why I'm still here. Those things don't bother me. I'm here to serve my country. I
committed to this president. My word is my bond. I ride for this brand. That's why I'm here. And
nothin' anybody else says is gonna change that.
Produced by Andy Court, Evie Salomon and Kylie Atwood
© 2018 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.
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RELATED VIDEO

60 MINUTES POLITICS
Betsy DeVos on guns, school choice and why people don't like her
Betsy DeVos on guns, school choice and why people don't like her
The secretary of education has been one of the most criticized members of President Trump's
Cabinet, but DeVos says she's "more misunderstood than anything"
2018
Mar 11
CORRESPONDENT
Lesley Stahl
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Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is a devout Christian grandmother from Michigan -- who
has spent most of her life trying to improve the quality of education for poor kids. So how in the
world did she become one of the most hated members of the Trump Cabinet?
She is dedicated to promoting school choice but her critics say she really wants to privatize the
public school system that she once called, quote, "a dead end."
Now, after the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, her portfolio is expanding. Monday,
President Trump is expected to appoint her as head of a new commission on school safety
charged with developing policies to prevent school violence.
Do something unexpected: answer our questions. You came to our school just for publicity and
avoided our questions for the 90 minutes you were actually here. How about you actually do
your job? #neveragain #DoYourJob https://t.co/4Ts0INq0gR
— Aly Sheehy🦅 (@Aly_Sheehy) March 7, 2018
Betsy DeVos visited the school in Florida on Wednesday, but like almost everywhere else she
goes, she faced criticism. Some of the students sent out angry tweets: "You came to our school
just for publicity and avoided our questions." "Betsy DeVos came to my school, talked to three
people, and pet a dog." Many of the students are frustrated at the administration for talking
about school safety, but not acting.
Betsy Devos came to my school, talked to three people, and pet a dog. This is incase the press
tries to say something else later
— Alanna//#NEVERAGAIN (@AgCI3Cu2) March 7, 2018
Betsy DeVos: I give a lot of credit to the students there for really raising their voices, and I think
that they are not going to let this moment go by.
Lesley Stahl: They want gun control.
Betsy DeVos: They want a variety of things. They want solutions.
Lesley Stahl: Do you think that teachers should have guns in the classroom?
Betsy DeVos: That should be an option for states and communities to consider. And I hesitate to
think of, like, my first-grade teacher, Mrs. Zorhoff, I couldn't ever imagine her having a gun and
being trained in that way. But for those who are-- who are capable, this is one solution that can
and should be considered. But no one size fits all. Every state and every community is going to
address this issue in a different way.
0311-60mins-betsy5.jpg
Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos speaks with 60 Minutes correspondent Lesley Stahl CBS
NEWS
Lesley Stahl: Do you see yourself as a leader in this-- in this subject? And what kind of ideas
will you be promoting?
Betsy DeVos: I have actually asked to head up a task force that will really look at what states
are doing. See there are a lot of states that are addressing these issues in very cohesive and
coherent ways.
Lesley Stahl: Do you feel a sense of urgency?
Betsy DeVos: Yes.
Lesley Stahl: 'Cause this sounds like talking. Instead of acting.
Betsy DeVos: No, there is a sense of urgency indeed.
"I hesitate to think of, like, my first-grade teacher, Mrs. Zorhoff, I couldn't ever imagine her
having a gun and being trained in that way."
The reason Betsy DeVos wanted to be secretary of education was so she could promote school
choice, offering parents options other than traditional public schools – where 90 percent of kids
go. She has proposed massive cuts in public education funding and wants to shift billions to
alternative players like private, parochial and charter schools.
Betsy DeVos: We have invested billions and billions and billions of dollars from the federal
level And we have seen zero results.
Lesley Stahl: But that really isn't true. Test scores have gone up over the last 25 years. So why
do you keep saying nothing's been accomplished?
Betsy DeVos: Well actually, test scores vis-à-vis the rest of the world have not gone up. And we
have continued to be middle of the pack at best. That's just not acceptable.
Lesley Stahl: No it's not acceptable. But it's better than it was. That's the point. You don't
acknowledge that things have gotten better. You won't acknowledge that, over the--
Betsy DeVos: But I don't think they have for too many kids. We've stagnated
Lesley Stahl: Okay, so there's the big argument. So what can be done about that?
Betsy DeVos: What can be done about that is empowering parents to make the choices for their
kids. Any family that has the economic means and the power to make choices is doing so for
their children. Families that don't have the power, that can't decide: "I'm gonna move from this
apartment in downtown whatever to the suburb where I think the school is gonna be better for
my child" if they don't have that choice – and they are assigned to that school, they are stuck
there. I am fighting for the parents who don't have those choices. We need all parents to have
those choices.
"We should be funding and investing in students, not in school buildings, not in institutions, not
in systems."
Question is: does her solution work? Do choice schools perform better than public schools?
Naturally -- there are conflicting studies. It's complicated.
But DeVos spends a lot of time showcasing choice schools like Cold Spring Elementary, a
public school in Indianapolis – that was allowed to get rid of the local teachers' union and create
an innovative curriculum.
But when parents choose these options, taxpayer funds follow the child and that means that the
public school left behind can end up with less money.
Lesley Stahl: Why take away money from that school that's not working, to bring them up to a
level where they are-- that school is working?
Betsy DeVos: Well, we should be funding and investing in students, not in school-- school
buildings, not in institutions, not in systems.
Lesley Stahl: Okay. But what about the kids who are back at the school that's not working?
What about those kids?
Betsy DeVos: Well, in places where there have been-- where there is-- a lot of choice that's been
introduced-- Florida, for example, the-- studies show that when there's a large number of
students that opt to go to a different school or different schools, the traditional public schools
actually-- the results get better, as well.
0311-60mins-betsy2.jpg
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos works with students at Cold Spring School in Indianapolis
CBS NEWS
Lesley Stahl: Now, has that happened in Michigan? We're in Michigan. This is your home state.
Betsy DeVos: Michi--Yes, well, there's lots of great options and choices for students here.
Lesley Stahl: Have the public schools in Michigan gotten better?
Betsy DeVos: I don't know. Overall, I-- I can't say overall that they have all gotten better.
Lesley Stahl: The whole state is not doing well.
Betsy DeVos: Well, there are certainly lots of pockets where this-- the students are doing well
and--
Lesley Stahl: No, but your argument that if you take funds away that the schools will get better,
is not working in Michigan where you had a huge impact and influence over the direction of the
school system here.
Betsy DeVos: I hesitate to talk about all schools in general because schools are made up of
individual students attending them.
Lesley Stahl: The public schools here are doing worse than they did.
Betsy DeVos: Michigan schools need to do better. There is no doubt about it.
Lesley Stahl: Have you seen the really bad schools? Maybe try to figure out what they're doing?
Betsy DeVos: I have not-- I have not-- I have not intentionally visited schools that are
underperforming.
Lesley Stahl: Maybe you should.
Betsy DeVos: Maybe I should. Yes.
DeVos is the only Cabinet secretary protected by a squad of U.S. Marshals because she's gotten
death threats. She's frequently met by protesters who accuse her of pushing an elitist agenda.
She often manages to offend, as when she called historically black colleges and universities
"pioneers" of "school choice" – as though they had a choice.
At this commencement speech at Bethune-Cookman University, students booed and turned their
backs to her.
Lesley Stahl: Why have you become, people say, the most hated Cabinet secretary?
Betsy DeVos: I'm not so sure exactly how that happened. But I think there are a lot of really
powerful forces allied against change.
Lesley Stahl: Does it hurt?
Betsy DeVos: Sometimes it does. Sometimes it does. Again, I think-- I think--
Lesley Stahl: Do you ever say--
Betsy DeVos: --I'm more misunderstood than anything.
0311-60mins-betsy4.jpg
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos CBS NEWS
Some of the criticism, she feels, is unfair, especially when it involves her wealth. She faced a
hostile question about it during a speech at Harvard last year.
Harvard Question: So you're a billionaire with lots and lots of investments. And the so-called
school choice movement is a way to open the floodgates for corporate interests to make money
off the backs of students. How much do you expect your net worth to increase as a result of your
policy choices?
Moderator: You can choose not to answer that secretary.
Among President Trump's cabinet of moguls and titans, DeVos is the richest: she grew up
wealthy and married even wealthier. In their hometown of Grand Rapids, the DeVoses have
been exceedingly charitable, their name decorates buildings like the civic center and children's
hospital.
At her bruising confirmation hearing, she was grilled about her wealth and lack of experience.
She's been an advocate, not an educator.
Lesley Stahl: What happened there?
Betsy DeVos: I've not had a root canal, but I can imagine that a root canal might be more
pleasant than that was.
Lesley Stahl: So you've been on the job now over a year. What have you done that you're most
proud of?
Betsy DeVos: Yeah. We've begun looking at and rolling back a lot of the overreach of the
federal government in education.
By overreach she means regulations. And like most of President Trump's cabinet, DeVos is a
devoted de-regulator. Part of her job as Secretary of Education is overseeing guidelines that
protect the civil rights of students.
Just days after being confirmed, she rescinded a guideline implemented under President Obama
that allowed transgender students to use the bathrooms of their choice – sparking even more
protests.
She is now considering scrapping the Obama-era "guidance on how to identify, avoid and
remedy discriminatory discipline," which aims to prevent schools from punishing students of
color more harshly than their white classmates.
Betsy DeVos: We are studying that rule. We need to ensure that all students have an opportunity
to learn in a safe and nurturing environment. And all students means all students.
Lesley Stahl: Yeah but let's say there's a disruption in the classroom and a bunch of whites kids
are disruptive and they get punished, you know, go see the principal, but the black kids are, you
know, they call in the cops. I mean, that's the issue: who and how the kids who disrupt are being
punished.
Betsy DeVos: Arguably, all of these issues or all of this issue comes down to individual kids.
And--
Lesley Stahl: Well, no. That-- it's not.
Betsy DeVos: --it does come down to individual kids. And--often comes down to-- I am
committed to making sure that students have the opportunity to learn in an environment that is
conducive to their learning.
Lesley Stahl: Do you see this disproportion in discipline for the same infraction as institutional
racism?
Betsy DeVos: We're studying it carefully. And are committed to making sure students have
opportunity to learn in safe and nurturing environments.
While this regulation is under review, she has already drawn fire for changing Title IX
guidelines on handling sexual assault on college campuses. She's allowing colleges to require
stronger evidence from accusers, and give the accused a greater benefit of the doubt.
Lesley Stahl: Are you in any way, do you think, suggesting that the number of false accusations
are as high as the number of actual rapes or assaults?
Betsy DeVos: Well, one sexual assault is one too many, and one falsely accused individual is
one too many.
Lesley Stahl: Yeah, but are they the same?
Betsy DeVos: I don't know. I don't know. But I'm committed to a process that's fair for everyone
involved.
Lesley Stahl: The Me-Too Movement has come along at the same time. This is all feeding into
it. We're not talking about colleges anymore. We're talking about men in positions of power in
industry and government. Have you ever had an issue?
Betsy DeVos: I can recall a number of moments in the past-- several decades ago that I think
today would just be viewed as unacceptable. Yeah.
It's been an unlikely journey and balancing act for grandmother Betsy DeVos, from her
sheltered life in Michigan – to her life now as a lightning rod in Washington.
Produced by Shachar Bar-On. Natalie Jimenez Peel, associate producer.
© 2018 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Lesley Stahl
One of America's most recognized and experienced broadcast journalists, Lesley Stahl has been
a 60 Minutes correspondent since 1991.
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