Antonio Villaraigosa on 'Your World'

This is a rush transcript from "Your World With Neil Cavuto," June 8, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, ANCHOR: Well, a clear battle line being drawn between Meg Whitman and her Republican opponent, Steve Poizner, over Arizona’s immigration law, but neither support boycotting that this guy is enforcing.

To the Democratic mayor of Los Angeles, Antonio Villaraigosa.

Mayor, very good to have you. Thanks for joining us.

ANTONIO VILLARAIGOSA D-MAYOR OF LOS ANGELES: Neil, it’s great to be on your show again.

CAVUTO: You know, it’s funny. These two Republican candidates, at least the front-running candidates, are the ones who are saying what you are doing, what your city is doing is wrong, and that you have more important things you should be doing than boycotting another state.

What do you make of that?

VILLARAIGOSA: Well, we are focusing on the important things. And we would like them to be discussing them in this election.

The issue of jobs. You just asked the governor about the economic situation in California, which is very dire, and particularly here in Los Angeles, where we have a 14.5 percent unemployment rate. As you know, we were also looking at big budget problems in Los Angeles. And I’m proud to say that, on July 1, we will have a balanced budget, and we will have extricated about 3,500 folks from our civilian payroll.

So, we need to figure out how we get them to work. Those are the issues, the most important issues facing our state and our city.

CAVUTO: Well, agreed, Mayor. And you’re a pretty astute business read yourself. And I’m wondering, in your heart of hearts, sir, whether you think, in the middle of the fiscal mess you’re trying deal with, and you’re trying to get unions in your city to make concessions, no easy task, especially for a Democratic governor asking unions to do that, that it is worth the trouble, the time or the effort to be targeting a state whose crackdown on illegals you might or might not like?

VILLARAIGOSA: Well, you know, I can tell you what I do like, in fact what I love. I love the United States of America. I love our Constitution.

I love the principles and values that have always embodied that document and who we are. And, frankly, I think the Arizona law go — goes against the grain of that tradition, of that Constitution. I think it’s unconstitutional on its face, but we can disagree about that.

What we should all be focused on is creating jobs here in Los Angeles and across the state. And when you see politicians focusing...

CAVUTO: I understand that, Mayor, but at any level — at any — I know, sir, but, at any level, do you think in your gut with so many other worries, whatever you say about Arizona, that there are more important fish to fry right now?

VILLARAIGOSA: There are a lot of important issues facing us. And one of them is the issue of jobs and the economy.

But the issue of civil liberties and democratic rights is also something that’s important to all of us. And, so, as I said, I have taken the position I have, a position of principle, just like I voted today, because, as a question of principle, I think it’s important for us to exercise our right, and I hope that Angelenos and Californians all come out to the polls.

CAVUTO: All right.

VILLARAIGOSA: I heard you say that the turnout is low right now.

CAVUTO: OK. You never know. You never know.

VILLARAIGOSA: And my hope is that they go out and vote.


CAVUTO: All right, Mayor. Sorry. We’re pressed for time.

Content and Programming Copyright 2010 Fox News Network, Inc. Copyright 2010 Roll Call, Inc. All materials herein are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of Roll Call. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.