Rock Center   |  April 12, 2013

Steve Jobs’ wife fights for DREAM Act, remembers husband

In her first interview since Steve Jobs’ death, Laurene Powell Jobs talks exclusively to Rock Center Anchor Brian Williams about her fight for immigration reform and passage of the DREAM Act. The intensely private Powell Jobs also addressed her husband's legacy.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> of the least likely people to take a public stand or join in a demonstration on capitol hill . laurene powell jobs, wife och tof the late steve johns is intensely private. with the filmmaker, david gooun guggenheim, she went to washington to push for immigration reform . guggenheim is the man behind the oscar winning film "an inconvenient truth" and "waiting for superman." they screened this new film for congress, "the dream is now."

>> i am undocumented.

>> i'm undo.

>> her passion is the dream act . it addresses those brought to this nation as children opening residency if they serve in the military or seek higher education . we sat down with the two of them the night before their trip to washington, the award-winning documentary filmmaker and laurene powell jobs. she and her husband were married over 20 years and raised three children. she said she will not discuss her husband's death and will never discuss her husband's death because it is a private family matter. she would talk about all that he left us with.

>> for reasons that are your own and you are entitled to for the rest of your life, there are subjects you don't want to discuss and i'm not going to ask. i'm going to ask you one question. that is about legacy. is there anything you would correct about your husband's legacy as it has been laid before us?

>> well, i think steve has a public legacy and a private legacy. in the public, we see the product that he created that he cared so deeply about that changed all of our lives the way that we function and communicate. what he wanted to do in his life was create tools that allowed people to work at the highest level. i think he did that. so that legacy is beautiful for me to live with. his private legacy with me and the kids is that of husband and father and we miss him every day. having kind of the body of work surrounding us is actually a really beautiful reminder. i find it touching and inspiring for me to make sure that i continue to do what i'm most passionate about. i hope my kids feel the same way.

>> that's another way of saying we're left with a world of really cool stuff. i always wanted to know what it was like to be a kennedy and drive to kennedy airport and what it is like to be you at a light and watch ten people cross and the only thing they have in common are white earbuds. what's that like?

>> it's pretty cool.

>> it's pretty cool. that changed our world.

>> yeah. to do what you want to do, to leave a mark in a way that you think is important and lasting, that's a life well-lived.

>> a pretty finite list of people who get to say that.

>> so, you are entitled to your privacy. for there to be a vehicle to come along to get you to raise your hand and speak out, tell me how this issue came into your life through your work with young people .

>> i've been working in education for about 15 years. i started an organization called college track, which works with students who will be first in their families to go to and complete college. many of them are first in their families to complete high school . as i got to know the students, i came across the circumstance of undocumented students, kids brought to this country as youngsters who are raised as americans, who go to american schools and then when they graduate high school , they have no prospects in front of them because they are undocumented. i started getting more active around immigration reform because this is such a waste of lives, such a waste of potential, such a waste for our country.

>> here you are from university of pennsylvania , stanford, a first-class american education . what you seem to be saying is, everything you were given and the opportunities you had should be available?

>> yes. i think that's why i can relate so personally to the students, because i understand that. i understand for me that school enhanced and even made my life. we think of college track as opening up a portal of opportunities for individuals so that they can become what they want to become. that's part of the american promise.

>> more and more, brian, when i make my films, i make them about people i'm drawn to. my hope is that when we tell the story, people see the human lives are at stake. it has an opinion to it.

>> oh, it has got a point of view.

>> it has a point of view. i'm happy that the stars are aligning. i'm happy for these dreamers, because i think if it doesn't happen, what happens to a dream deferred? that langston hughes poem. there is jose , who we have in this movie. jose was a top math scholar and dreamt of being a mechanical engineer .

>> i have all my math, science, engineering books.

>> he was awarded a full scholarship to arizona state university .

>> i have my diploma over here. it has dust on it.

>> whether jose graduated in 2011 , there was a shortage of mechanical engineers in the state but he could not apply for the jobs his other classmates were seeking because he was undocumented.

>> now, i'm working in stucco.

>> he is working in stucco.

>> what happened to a dream deferred?

>> for me, the tragedy is that he had a dream to study engineering and he did it and he was successful and he dedicated his life and he used school to enhance his intellectual capacity. he did everything that he was supposed to do. now, he cannot be employed in that field. that's where the tragedy is.

>> let's roll the next clip.

>> i was inspired by the courage. as a young kid, you always look up to heroes. i just needed marine clothes for me.

>> he attended a public high school that was founded on the principles of the marine corps .

>> everywhere we went, we would take first place overall. it was a good feeling. all the hard work paid off.

>> first place.

>> last year, alejandro was named city staff course for the entire city of chicago .

>> it wasn't until when i was a sophomore when i took driver's ed, i can't get a driver's license or have a state i.d. or get into the military. i had to fill in the space for social security .

>> the marines want him. we need him.

>> i have been around a lot of marines. this kid is a classic profile. he eats, sleeps, breaths marines.

>> yes. my dad was a marine.

>> tell the minds of our viewers watching you guys on a friday night. help us process this. how are we supposed to feel about their parents who did do something bad? this is ill-gotten gains. the first entry into this country was wrong. how are we supposed to feel about the bureaucracy that we would now have to have just to hand social security numbers to a marine or civil engineer ?

>> it is understandable that people are conflicted about this. yes, the parents broke the law. i think that's why congress is trying to find a way to make amends. so have them pay a penalty. have them pay back taxes. have them wait for two decades in order to have the chance to have citizenship. there are penalties that can be brought out. then, you have someone like senator marco rubio who said, i understand why these parents came. if you are in desperate poverty, if you are struggling, if you would do anything in the world to get a better life for your kids, who are we to judge you so harshly?

>> the other part is, we have allowed in our inaction, we have allowed this shallow economy to exist. your nanny may be a citizen but then you go to a restaurant, who is busing those tables? who is chopping those vegetables? all of us benefit from this. we are allowing this shallow economy to happen unless we step up and say, let's fix it. i'm all for saying to businesses, you have to stop doing that. as long as we allow that economy to exist, it is all of us.

>> what about the argument that not everyone will succeed and prosper, some people are trying to game the system. some will be a constant draw, a drain on the american economy , this won't be all net/ net positive ?

>> i think it is for fear. i think it is cynical.

>> one of my favorite quotes is, a lawmaker said, i do not support any immigration policy that would have kept my grandparents out of the country. i think that's a good rule. how about we agree upon what our common american values are, which is let's make this a true land of opportunity. we are also a land of rules and laws that should be enforced. let's fix this problem and then let's let people flourish.

>> laurene powell jobs. davis guggenheim here in new york with