tv Americas News Headquarters FOX News April 11, 2015 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
every year we live longer. that's our show, see you next week for a new episode again in our new timeline, fridays on fbn. see you then. we start with the fox alert. we are right now awaiting a new conference from president obama. he is in panama city. he will step up to the podium, as you can see, momentarily. the president expected to speak there just minutes from now following his historic meeting earlier today with cuban president raul castro. that event marking the first time in generations that a united states president has met with the president of cuba. an both vow of a new era in relations between the two countries. hello, everyone, this is "america's news headquarters." president obama telling cuban leader raul castro the u.s. is ready to turn the page with cuba.
in a historic meeting that hasn't happened in 50 years. >> this is obviously a historic meeting. the history between the united states and cuba is obviously complicated and over the years a lot of mistrust has developed, but during the course of the last several months, there have been contacts between the u.s. and the cuban government. >> now, that meeting also not without controversy. kevin cork has more now from panama. >> reporter: a stunning reversal of more than 50 years of a lack of communication between the u.s. and cuba as today the president of the island nation raul castro absolved president obama of the rift that has kept the two countries that are separated by a mere 90 miles but worlds apart over the past half century. the two men did have the opportunity to address the summit today. president obama for his part acknowledged the long road
ahead, but he promised not to let the past dictate the future. >> the point is the united states will not be imprisoned by the past. we're looking to the future. and the policies that improve the lives of the cuban people and advance the interests of cooperation in the hemisphere. >> president castro meanwhile, spent nearly an hour reciting past grievances between the two cup trees but he said the president is an honest man and he didn't blame him for the past. >> translator: i have told president obama myself that i am very emotional when i talk about the revolution. i apologized to him because president obama had no responsibility with this. he has no responsibility with this. there were ten presidents before him. >> still the president has plenty of critics, in particular on capitol hill, where a number of senators have been very vocal in their opposition to renewed ties with cuba.
among them marco rubio of florida a man himself who would like to be president and is set to announce his run for the white house on monday. traveling with the president in panama, i'm kevin corke, fox news. back to you. >> okay kevin, thank you very much. we're going to bring you that news conference between president raul castro and our president obama in panama city panama, once it begins. as we wait for that, there's another meeting that's about to end in roughly 18 hours. hillary clinton is set to officially announce her candidacy for presidency tomorrow. we're told she will make it offensive through a video message on social media and then is expected to hit the road to get some one-on-one face time with voters in iowa and new hampshire. supporters are not waiting until tomorrow. they were throwing a fund-raising event here in new york city today. you can see they're gearing up and ready. that's where mrs. clinton has already set up her national campaign headquarters in
brooklyn. right now ed henry has been following the campaign our chief white house correspondent. ed so mrs. clinton is expected to travel there where you are immediately after the announcement. how are they preparing for what will be a big day tomorrow? >> reporter: no doubt about it you're right. we expect she'll be here monday or tuesday at the latest in order to hit the ground running. you noted that they have set up the head quarters there in brooklyn, new york. today as well there was this event as you mentioned, fund-raising but also rally ready for hillary. this was a group that was a grassroots organization urging her for months now to get in. they're really passing the baton to the campaign itself now as it officially begins tomorrow. we expect in the afternoon. what's interesting is she did the same thing, hillary clinton did in 2007 with a video on social media to announce she was in for her first presidential bid. she didn't follow it up with a quick visit to iowa, she waited about a week to get to this battleground state.
this time democrats here on the ground are telling us she really has to get in and get her hands dirty. listen. >> i don't think you should ever take iowa for granted. iowa is a state that candidates win by going out and meeting the voters individually. if she decided to come in here and just run a standard primary type of campaign the last couple of weeks, throw some commercials up she would lose. >> now, remember, back in 2007, 2008 she was considered the inevitable democratic nominee then as she is now, but finished third here in the iowa caucuses behind barack obama and john edwards obviously trying to change all of that this time. >> these one-on-one meetings sound like the listening tour when she ran for senate here in new york state traveling around introducing her one on one. meanwhile, the republicans are not wasting any time hitting back at her already. >> reporter: not at all. eric, you make a great point, which is while she really sort
of drops the trappings of being a first lady in 2000 in that first senate race and got one on one up close with voters, in 2008 she was more of a distant figure as a united states senator and kind of you know lost the lesson that she had learned in the senate campaign. the rnc, the republican national committee, has an ad out in some of these battleground states this weekend as a prebuttal if you will saying her record is too tied to the failed policies of the obama administration. it's interesting, we had a chance to talk to the republican party chair here in iowa at a news conference right here on the steps of the state capitol. here's what he said about her record as secretary of state. >> look at the results that were proved -- that were produced while she was secretary of state. if you look at what the world looks like in all seriousness, if you look at what the world looked like in 2008 before barack obama took his oath of office and she became his secretary of state and you look at the world now, i don't know
if i was -- if i was mrs. clinton, i don't know if i'd be bragging about that. >> reporter: also interviewed martin o'malley, a potential democratic rival to clinton. he said something similar. he wasn't as harsh in his criticism but as a democrat he said, look traveling all around the world as secretary of state doesn't mean that you've just resume and doesn't mean you actually have accomplishments. so once she's in tomorrow, she's going to be facing heat from all sides, eric. >> she'll certainly be asked by republicans about benghazi and the e-mails and all of that. of course, ed on monday marco rubio we're told jumps into the republican side. it will be quite a busy two days for you. >> reporter: a crowded field on both sides. >> it is. thank you so much, ed as always. meanwhile senator rand paul hitting the campaign trail after announcing his bid for the white house last week. senator paul in las vegas today speaking to a rally at a community center where hundreds of supporters turned out to hear
what he had to say. nevada used to be solidly red but has transformed into a swing state. president obama won it twice. senator paul, one of the few republican names on the big ticket names invited to this weekend's convention of the national rifle association. but most of the others were there, like former florida governor jeb bush wisconsin governor scott walker and texas senator ted cruz. all calling out hillary clinton and the democrats for their stance on gun control. >> well i'll tell you if hillary clinton is going to join with barack obama and the gun grabbers and come after our guns, then what i say is come and take it. >> elizabeth has the story from washington. >> reporter: front and center at the national rifle association's convention, presidential policies both present and future. >> this next election in 2016 is
going to come down to a leader who will tell us the truth and who will do what he says he will do. >> i promise you one thing. if i run for president and if i win, the second amendment will be totally protected. that i can tell you. >> it's described, first and foremost, as the commander in chief. and yet president obama has treated this duty like an afterthought. he entered office believing that the united states was too engaged in the world in too many places. >> reporter: florida senator marco rubio is expected to be the third formal candidate to enter the presidential ring monday but he is among a number of potential gop presidential candidates taking the stage over the weekend. many, such as wisconsin governor scott walker, using the podium to take a jab at former secretary of state hillary clinton and her foreign policy past. >> whose former secretary of state, hillary clinton, actually gave russia a reset button. >> reporter: noticeably absent from the stage kentucky senator
rand paul who was campaigning in iowa on the heels of his presidential announcement. he's received an "a" rating from the association. also gone, new jersey governor chris christie who in years past has gotten a "c" rating on the nra scorecard and recently approved a number of new gun laws in his state. there were no speakers from the democratic party. in years past there have been a number of members who supported the association. back to you. >> elizabeth prann reporting from washington. thanks, elizabeth. we have new information now about that shooting that happened right outside the u.s. capitol building this afternoon. it briefly put the building on lockdown. we are now told that gunman committed suicide by shooting himself. u.s. capitol police have just finished a briefing with reporters and peter doocy was there and joins us with more details. hi peter. >> reporter: eric, as you can see, it's calm now but there was chaos earlier when the crowded u.s. capitol filled with tourists who were in town to see the cherry blossoms became a
crime scene. a man shot himself to death next to a fountain that sits in the famous rotunda but first he was seen carrying some kind of a protest sign referencing social justice. >> it was just a social sign about social justice. i don't have the exact -- i don't have the exact language, but we can get that for you later. >> reporter: the bomb squad showed up to check out the shooter's backpack and a rolling suitcase, both of which were later cleared, and we spoke to an eyewitness who described 50 to 60 people walking around the west front of the capitol when he heard what he thought was a balloon popping and saw a man go down. additional panic came shortly after when someone spotted another gun, but it was carried by an off-duty capitol policeman showing his wife the cherry blossoms. >> what i keep going back to is
thankfully my girls weren't there because there were young girls my girls' age there and they just saw a man blow his head off. >> police officers never fired a shot and they do not believe there's a connection to terror with what happened today. they also will not tell us if the man who committed suicide just over my right shoulder is someone that they had seen protesting here in the past. >> all right, peter, a tragic situation. thank you so much. well the situation in yemen getting worse and worse with violence crossing the border into saudi arabia. three saudi army officers reportedly killed by a mortar shell fired from yemen. john has more on the growing bloodshed. >> reporter: saudi defense officials say that houthi rebels fired a mortar killing three officers. saudi military forces have been posted along the border with
yemen because of the continued fighting in the country. a saudi-led coalition has been bombing houthi rebel positions in yemen, trying to push the rebels back from key areas and cities where the fighting has been particularly intense over the past week. al qaeda's branch in yemen al qaeda in the arabian peninsula, has also attacked saudi positions reportedly killing two soldiers when al qaeda fighters took control of a border post in yemen. there's been talk of a possible saudi ground offensive into yemen, though nothing has materialized. but again saudi forces remain posted along the border of yemen as the country spirals deeper into civil war. human rights groups estimate at least 650 people, many civilians, including dozens of children have been killed in the violence and the world health organization estimates that at least 100,000 people have fled their homes because of the escalating violence and fighting. >> hey thank you, john, there
in jerusalem. right now we are waiting for president obama's news conference in which he will tell us all about it. stepping up to the podium. we are told they discussed terrorism, they discussed the u.s. fugitives who have found safety on that island nation. a lot of people wanting them back. will that happen? we may find out from the president in a moment. and there's a violent brawl in a walmart parking lot. a family of eight attacking police officers with deadly results. and hillary clinton -- well, it's countdown time now. she is going to make it official tomorrow and the republicans, well, they're gearing up. what they are saying, what they will do. hillary, hillary, hillary. >> hello, iowa! i'm back! i've got a few things on my mind
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this is a meeting of the minds and for the first time in 50 years. >> 1958 was the last time an american and cuban president sat down together. that was dwight eisenhower and batista. can you imagine? look at that handshake. more than 50 years of problems and certainly differences between both nations. the hard line communist nation on the left, the grand american democracy on the right. a lot of outstanding questions. we'll be talking to mark a little later on in this hour. for example, those fugitives. dozens and dozens that fled from the american justice system they found sanctity and safety in cuba. will they be extradited and brought back to our country? there are issues of trade families, cuban americans. although the president said that it's an historic meeting and it was time he said to try something new and engage more directly with the cuban government and the cuban people. mr. castro said that there will be differences and they may not agree with everything but that both sides are talking about
opening up embassies in each country, so we will see what the president has to say when he steps up to the podium in a moment. regarding those embassies, talk of embassies in both countries, they made good progression in the conversation. there's some technical issues that lie ahead. of course the ability of cubans to have access to banking in the u.s. in each meeting they say they have advanced the ball. speaking for about an hour earlier today. >> and, you know, the cuban president said something that was kind of stunning in his news conference. he said he agreed with everything that president obama said. he also called him an honest man. so clearly there was praise from raul castro for barack obama and for his opening the hand and extending that hand to cuba and of course also it's caused a lot of controversy. tweets coming in. jeb bush saying why is the president meeting with a communist dictator when he wouldn't meet with benjamin netanyahu and others questioning
the whole rationale behind this new era, quote unquote with this communist government. not with the cuban people but with the government that still holds political prisoners, that allegedly still beats those cuban prisoners and there are some reports of incidents there in panama during the summit. so there are a lot of questions and this has caused a lot of outrage especially in little havana. >> and you mentioned that castro called president obama an honest man. he's saying he doesn't hold him responsible -- doesn't hold president obama responsible for his things that took place before he was even born. getting back to the talk of the embassies perhaps opening in both countries it could be concluded relatively quickly. both of the presidents want to get this done as soon as possible but they definitely want to get it right. again, historic meeting lots of controversy as well surrounding this as well and they're talking about that terrorism list. the review, if it's complete or not. the president is going to be
talking about possible decisions in terms of removing cuba off the terrorist list or state of harboring terrorists. we'll see if that's going to happen. >> you know it's interesting, the state department has had cuba on that list since 1982. >> 19 i don't82. >> and there's a lot of speculation that maybe that announcement could come now, during this news conference that the united states would take cuba off the state sponsor of terrorism at the state department and we'll just have to see. congress certainly will at some point weigh in on all of this because there was a lot of anger on the other side about some of these moves. we'll hear a lot more of this from marco rubio, certainly, on monday when marco rubio the senator from florida who is a cuban american, whose family fled from cuba see what he has to say in contrast to what the president is about to say moments from now. >> and it's going to be interesting to see how hillary clinton, if she's going to align with the president on this issue
or not. we're going to bring in our political panel right now to weigh in on this as we await president obama to take that podium. let's bring in tammy bruce now radio talk show host and fox news contributor. and mary ann marsh, former senior advisor to former senator john kerry and democratic strategist. before we talk about hillary clinton and how hillary clinton might respond and how she's going to align herself or not with the president on this tammy, let me get your thoughts about this historic meeting between raul castro and president obama. >> look, it's extraordinary. he's snug ling up to another tie ranting. you speak to the cowboyuban community and they realize this is a regime that executed most of the intellectual class in order to maintain control. they took possession of all property, any element anyone owned on that nation. nobody owns anything now. the people that fled that nation for this one lost everything.
it has been a tyrannical regime. there are political prisoners. there are individuals who continue to disappear. there are journalists who of course cannot report properly. it is ruled with an iron fist. it has nothing to do with any kind of democracy. there is no real demands put on the castro brothers to create at least this kind of a detante. the same with iran. and of course refuses to speak with netanyahu is spying on our european allies, seems to be very comfortable cozying up to the tyrants throughout the world. >> mary ann your take on this. do you think that this meeting between raul castro and president obama is a good -- a good move toward the future or is this too much controversy surrounding this meeting? >> it's an historic meeting and it only signals the first step
in a long series of progress that's going to be made in establishing relationships with cuba. president obama said this months ago. after 50 years, it's time to try something different because what we've been doing for the last 50 years hasn't worked. so he is good to his word. he's trying to establish better relationships with cuba. here in the united states, including in florida, this is a generational divide on this issue. all cubans aren't opposed to this. younger cubans support this effort by the president to normalize relations with cuba. i think you are going to see this play out in the presidential election. rubio and bush and others are opposed to the president on this while democrats and younger cubans and younger voters certainly support the president on this. i think that's an important point. just to refute tammy for a second there, the fact is president obama speaks to prime minister netanyahu all the time. meets with him regularly. didn't on this last trip, understandably so. but he deals with netanyahu all the time. the way he's approaching iran, the way he's approaching cuba is
a way to get a different outcome, a better outcome and a way to actually get things done. that's what we need in the world because the more democracy there is, the more economic stability there is, the more opportunity for people who live in these countries to have a democracy and chart their own path the safer we're all going to be. >> mary anne, let me jump in because some of the conversation between president obama and president castro, president obama saying obviously there are going to be deep and significant differences between the u.s. and cuba. the president adding that he will speak out for democracy and human rights and cuba will lift up concerns about u.s.y as well as he said mr. castro did during his speech at the summit earlier in the day. so tammy jumping back in there, mary anne raised a point that the optics are not the same, but president obama does speak to prime minister netanyahu regularly. >> there's also demands. there's a lot of demands put on israel. you know frameworks about whether or not what will help conversations and whether
certain conversations will proceed. lifting -- having a better relationship is great if you can actually create a new democratic framework for the people of cuba. let me just say leading into this, cuba is highly reliant on venezuela and russia. as the economy of both those nations started to collapse, we were right at the point of being able -- >> tammy let me jump in here and let's listen in to president obama now. he's stepping up to the podium. >> i want to begin by thanking the president and people of panama city and all the pan manian people for being excellent hosts at the summit of measures. a place with cultures and commerce of our hemisphere have long intersected panama has often been called the crossroads of the world and with panama's leadership, our nations have come together to focus on the world, on the future and on what we can build for the one billion people of the americas.
this has been my third summit of the americas and my eighth visit to latin america. my trip reflects, as i mentioned earlier, a new era of u.s. engagement in the region. over the past few days we've advanced our engagement across the board. in keeping with the interamerican democratic charter, we continue to stand up strongly for democracy and human rights. this was the first summit of the americas to include a formal role for civil society. as i said at yesterday's forum the united states will continue to deepen our support for civil society groups across the americas and around the world. i'm pleased that there was widespread agreement among the nations here that civil society groups have a permanent role in future summits. the united states will support this work through the new innovations center we're creating to empower civil society groups across latin america. how to promote greater opportunity for the cuban people was also a major focus of my meeting with president castro. the first between leaders of our
two nations in more than half a century. i told president castro in private what i've said in public, that our governments will continue to have our differences and the united states will continue to stand firmly for universal values and human rights. at the same time we agreed that we can continue to take steps forward that advance our mutual interests. we'll continue to work toward re-establishing diplomatic relations, reopening embassies in havana and washington and encouraging greater contacts and commerce and exchanges between our citizens. i'm optimistic that we'll continue to make progress and that this can indeed be a turning point, not just between the united states and cuba but for greater cooperation among countries across the region. second, we continued our work to create more prosperity and opportunity for our people. at our meeting yesterday, federal american leaders reaffirmed their commitment to have the things that are needed
and i said i would work with congress to secure the $1 billion i proposed for our engagement with central america. yesterday's deal between boeing and copa airlines will support jobs in the united states, in panama and across the region and i think is representative of the commercial opportunities that allow both north and southern hemispheres -- both north and south america as well as central america to prosper if we deepen those trade ties. i was encouraged by the support of many leaders here for the wto trade facilitation agreement which would boost regional trade and for the transpacific partnership with its high standards for trade and protections for the workers and the environment. the summit included a special focus on how countries can expand access to education. i want to thank our private sector partners who pledged to continue their support of our hundred thousand strong in the americas initiative to encourage more exchanges between our
students. the nearly $70 million in investments that i've announce end in jamaica will expandedcation and training and employment programs for young people across latin america and the caribbean, including the impoverished and marginalized communities and the young leaders of americas initiative will help young entrepreneurs and civil society leaders across the entire region access the training and the resources and connections they need to start new ventures including the small businesses that create so many jobs in the region. finally, we took new steps to invest in clean energy and combat climate change. the new fund i announced with our caribbean and central american partners will help mobilize private sector investment and clean energy projects and reduce carbon emissions across the region and our task force will identify additional steps we can take together. a number of our countries committed to doubling our collective share of nonhydro renewable energy by
2030. i reaffirmed that through our $3 billion pledge to the green climate fund the united states will continue to help developing nations deal with the impacts of climate change. i reiterated our commitment to ensure that all countries in the hemisphere have open access to climate data as we meet this challenge together. so continued progress on cuba, new commitments to help lift up young people in the region, new partnerships to protect this beautiful land and our planet. as i said this morning, the united states is more deeply engaged across the region than we have been in decades and i believe the relationship between the united states and the americas is as good as it has ever been. we're focused on the future and what we can build and achieve together, and our engagement with the countries and people of the americas is going to continue throughout the remainder of my presidency. so with that let me take some questions. i'll start with jim kuhn.
>> thank you, mr. president. sir you head back to the united states with the task of convincing the american people and congress on two major foreign policy initiatives, the framework for a nuclear deal with iran and likely soon a decision to remove cuba from the list of state sponsors of terror. recent remarks by ayatollah have some wondering whether that deal can occur with iran. senator schumer wants congress to have the right to vote on removal of sanctions. presidential politics are likely to play a part in this cuba decision inevitably. so i'm wondering if it would take a lot of political capital just to get one done, let alone two. have you bitten off more than you can chew? >> no.
you may be surprised by that response, jim. let me take them in turn. first of all, with respect to cuba, there is majority support of our policy in the united states and there's overwhelming support for our policy in cuba. i think people recognize that if you keep on doing something for 50 years and it doesn't work you should try something new. and so the american people don't need to be persuaded that this is in fact the right thing to do. i recognize that there's still concerns and questions that congress may have. we've got concerns and questions about specific activities that are taking place in cuba and human rights and reform. there were two members of the cuban civil society that were in attendance at the meeting that i had yesterday who expressed much of what they have to go through on a day-to-day basis. they were supportive of our policy of engagement with cuba.
and so i don't think it's so much that we have to persuade anybody. the issue of the state sponsor of terrorism list as you know, the state department has provided recommendation. it's gone through our interagency process. i'll be honest with you, i have been on the road and i want to make sure that i have a chance to read it, study it before we announce publicly what the policy outcome is going to be. but in terms of the overall direction of cuba policy i think there is a strong majority both in the united states and in cuba that says our ability to engage, to open up commerce and travel and people-to-people exchanges is ultimately going to be good for the cuban people. now with respect to iran, i have always been clear. we are not done yet. what we were able to obtain was
a political framework between the p5+1 nations and iran that provided unprecedented verification of what is taking place in iran over the next two decades that significantly cuts back on its centrifuges that cuts off pathways for it to obtain a nuclear weapon, and that calls for in return the rolling back of sanctions in a phased way that allows us to snap back if iran violates the agreement. that's the political framework. that was not just something that the united states and iran agreed to but iran agreed to a political framework with the other p5+1 nations. now, what's always been clear is that iran has its own politics around this issue. they have their own hard-liners.
they have their own counterveiling impulses in terms of whether or not to go forward with something. just as we have in our country. and so it's not surprising to me that the supreme leader or a whole bunch of other people are going to try to characterize the deal in a way that protects their political position. but i know what was discussed in arriving at the political agreement. there's always the possibility of back sliding. there's a possibility that it doesn't get memorialized that satisfies us that we're able to verify that in fact iran is not getting a nuclear weapon and that we are preserving the capacity to snap back sanctions in the event that they are breaking any deal. and that's why the work is going to be so important between now
and the end of june to memorialize this so we can all examine it. we don't have to speculate on what the meaning of a deal is going to be. either there's going to be a document that iran agrees with the world community about and a series of actions that have to be taken or there's not. part of the challenge in this whole process has been opponents of basically any deal with iran have constantly tried to characterize what the deal is without seeing it. >> now, if we are able to obtain a final deal that comports with the political agreement and i say if, because that's not yet final, then i'm absolutely positive that that is the best way to prevent iran from getting a nuclear weapon. and that's not my opinion. that's the opinion of my secretary of energy who is a
physicist from m.i.t. and knows this stuff. that's the opinion of a whole bunch of nuclear experts who examined the deal. very rarely do you see a consensus of a large majority of people who are experts in the field saying this is actually a realistic, plausible meaningful approach to cut off the pathways for iran getting a nuclear weapon and it is more likely to succeed, not only than maintaining current sanctions or additional sanctions but more likely to succeed than if we took a military approach to solving the problem. again that is not uniquely my opinion, talk to people who were not affiliated with the administration, some who were skeptical about our capacity to get a deal done and have now looked at it and said if we're
able to get what was discussed in the political framework, it's absolutely the right thing to do. now, there's politics and political pressure inside of the united states, we all know that. the prime minister of israel is deeply opposed to it. i think he's made that very clear. i have repeatedly asked what is the alternative that you present that you think makes it less likely for iran to get a nuclear weapon and i have yet to obtain a good answer on that. and the narrow question that's going to be presented next week when congress comes back is what's congress' appropriate role in looking at a final deal. and, you know, i've talked to not only bob corker but i've talked to ben carden, the ranking member on the democratic side and i want to work with them so that congress can look at this deal when it's done. what i'm concerned about is making sure that we don't prejudge it or those who are
opposed to any deal whatsoever try to use a procedural argument essentially to screw up the possibility of a deal. the last comment i'm going to make on this. when i hear some, like senator mccain recently, suggest that our secretary of state, john kerry, who served in the united states senate, a vietnam veteran who's provided exemplary service to this nation is somehow less trustworthy in the interpretation of what's in a political agreement than the supreme leader of iran, that's an indication of the degree to which partisanship has crossed all boundaryies and we're seeing this again and again. we saw it by the letter by the 47 senators who communicate directly to the supreme leader of iran.
the person they say can't be trusted at all warning him not to trust the united states government. we have mitch mcconnell trying to tell the world don't have confidence in the u.s. government's abilities to fulfill any climate change pledge that we might make. and now we have a senator suggesting that our secretary of state is purposely misinterpreting the deal and giving the supreme leader of the iran the benefit of the doubt in the interpretations. you know that's not how we're supposed to run foreign policy. regardless of who's president or secretary of state. we can have argument, and there are legitimate arguments to be had. i understand why people might be mistrustful of iran. i understand why people might oppose the deal, although the reason is not because this is a bad deal per se but they just don't trust any deal with iran.
they may prefer to take a military approach to it. but when you start getting to the point where you are actively communicating that the united states government and our secretary of state is somehow spinning presentations in negotiation with a foreign power, particularly one that you say is your enemy, that's a problem. it needs to stop. jim acosta. i'm sorry, where's jim. >> right here. >> there you are. >> thank you very much mr. president. i was wondering if you were struck by raul castro's warm words for you today. he said he admired you said he had read some of your autobiographies, described you as an honest man. i'm just curious what you thought about that and do you
feel that raul castro is an honest man and can be trusted? and i would be remiss if i didn't ask you about another secretary of state, hillary clinton, who is expected to announce her campaign for the presidency tomorrow. do you foresee being involved in her campaign and do you hope that she runs on your record? thank you very much. >> it was a candid and fruitful conversation between me and raul castro. i can tell you that in the conversations i've had so far with him two on the phone and most recently face-to-face that we are able to speak honestly about our differences and our concerns in ways that i think offer the possibility of moving the relationship between our two countries in a different and better direction. we have very different views of
how society should be organized. and i was very direct with him, that we were not going to stop talking about issues like democracy and human rights and freedom of assembly and freedom of the press. not because we think we are perfect and that every country has to mimic us exactly but because there are a set of universal principles for which we stand. and one of the goals in my administration is to have some consistency in speaking out on behalf of those who oftentimes don't have a voice. and i think during his speech in the plenary session he was pretty clear about areas of u.s. policy he doesn't like, and i suspect he's going to continue to speak out on those. what's been clear from this entire summit, though, is the unanimity with which regardless of their ideological predispositions the leaders of
latin america think this is the right thing to do because what they see is the possibility of a more constructive dialogue that ultimately benefits the cuban people and removes what too often has been a distraction or an excuse from the hemisphere acting on important challenges that we face. so you know i am cautiously optimistic that over the coming months and coming years that the process that we've initiated first announced in december, reaffirmed here at the summit of the americas, will lead to a different future for the cuban people and a different relationship between the united states and cuba. with respect to hillary clinton
i'll make my comments very brief. she was a formidable candidate in 2008. she was a great supporter of mine in the general election. she was an outstanding secretary of state. she is my friend. i think she would be an excellent president. and i'm not on the ballot. so i'm not going to step on her lines. when she makes a decision to announce, i'm confident that she will be very clear about her vision for the country moving forward if she announces, and you know, in terms of her relationship with my administration, she was focused and working on really important foreign policy initiatives and the one thing i can say is that she's going to be able to handle
herself very well in any conversations or debates around foreign policy. and her track record with respect to domestic policy is i think one that cares about working families. you know if she decides to run and makes the announcement she's going to have some strong messages to deliver. jim. >> thank you mr. president. first of all, on cuba if i could two questions. the cuban government has frequently said that it cannot allow more political or personal freedoms freedoms owe pressed freedoms because the united states has used both covert and otherwise actions to try to overthrow the castros. does your new era in fact end regime change efforts by the united states? and should the cubans then respond by allowing free elections and tolerance of
dissent now because of the changed policy? and secondly, on the issue of hillary clinton, vice president biden of course said that the democratic race is wide open. the polls seem to say otherwise. what is your opinion on that is the race still wide open? >> not only have i run my last election, but i am not in the business of prognosticating future elections. that is your job. and there is no shortage of people who are happy to opine on that. i will not be one of them. on cuba we are not in the business of regime change. we are in the business of making sure the cuban people have freedom and the ability to participate and shape their own destiny and their own lives and supporting civil society. and there's going to be an evolution, regardless of what we do, inside of cuba.
partly it's going to be generational. you know, if you listen to president castro's comments earlier this morning, a lot of the points he made referenced actions that took place before i was born. and part of my message here is the cold war is over. there's still a whole lot of challenges that we face and a lot of issues around the world, and we're still going to have serious issues with cuba on not just the cuban government's approach to its own people but also regional issues and concerns. there are going to be areas where we cooperate as well. you know, cuban doctors deployed during the ebola crisis made a
difference, cuban activity in haiti in the wake of the earthquake made a difference, so there may be areas of collaboration as well. but what i said to president castro is the same thing that i've said to leaders throughout the said to leaders throughout the region. we have a point of view and we'll not be shy of expressing. it but i am confident that the way to lift up the values we care about is through persuasion .... and that is going to be the primary approach we take on a whole host of issues. primarily because they don't implicate our national security in a direct way. we have to be very clear, if cuba is not a threat to the united states, that doesn't mean we don't have differences with it. but on the list of threats that i am concerned about i think it
is fair to say betweeni sill and iran getting a nuclear upon weapon and activities in yemen and libya and boko haram, russian aggression in ukraine and the impact on our allies. i could go down the list, climate change, so i think our approach has to be one of working with the region and other countries, and be very clear about what we believe and stand for and what we think works and what doesn't. and so often, when we insert ourselves in ways that go beyond persuasion, it's counterproductive and it back fires. that's been part of our history,
which is why countries use us an excuse for their own go vernance failures. we'll lift up prosperity and security for people in the region. major derek? >> good afternoon, mr. president. allow me if you will to quite the supreme leader directly. united states activity since the framework it deceptive and lying and devilish and on two particular points. iran yeah sites cannot be inspected and all sanctions should be removed when the deal is signed. is it your opinion, mr. president, that this is pure postureing and disregarded by you
and your secretary of state and help me understand to whom the supreme leader is posturing. that is not usually a job description to the supreme leader. >> that is a well crafted question. even the guy with a supreme leader has to be concerned about his own constiency. and the issue is not whether i have to take his word for whether that's his understanding, because we have work until the end of john to see if we have a document that works. and if that is his understanding and his position in ways that can't be squared with our concern about being able to embark on vigorous inspections to assure that iowa ran is not cheating under any program and
that we don't have the capacity to snap back sanctions when we see a potential violation, then woer probably not going to get a deal. part of the concern that i have in this debate here major, i don't understand why everybody is working so hard to anticipate failure. the opponents of the deal don't seem to be focused on how we get to a good deal as much as they are focused on how can we show it is not possible to get a good deal. my simple point is let's wait and so what the deal is. and we'll be able to look, and if in fact, we are not satisfied that it cuts off the pathways for iran to obtain a nuclear weapon, then we'll not sign it. if on the other hand it does
then i will strongly argue and i believe the american people will support and the international community will support that it's far preferable to the other alternatives. major, it's not going to be perfect in the sense that if you asked prime minister netanyahu or some members of the republican caucus, or even some democrats if you ask me would i prefer that iran never have or did have or never have a single nut or bolt or anything related to nuclear power and don't have nuclear scientist and don't have capacity to develop it, that would be great. but that's not possible. that's not achievable through sanctions or military means. they're going to have some form of peaceful nuclear power. and that will then pose a challenge for the
international community which is why the political agreement calls for unprecedented framework of inspections that allows us to assure that it's not used or diverted in ways that could be weaponized. we'll have to see if we can get a deal or not. my only question is why do we keep trying to short circuit the actual negotiations. nobody is desarms. we're not getting rid of our nuclear weapons or navy or giving anything up. we are simply waiting to see what it is that the negotiators come up with if in fact, that we are able to come up with something that works, then we'll know. with respect to the supreme leader, yes, it is a pretty important title. it seems a little more clear cut
than president. on the other hand there may be ways of structuring a final deal that satisfies their pride, their optices and their politics but meet our core practicic objectives. last question. carren. there she is. >> thank you. just to belabor the point on that question mr. president your people have said that the framework agreement stands. and they are not not renorthboundable points although the implementation can be renegotiated some way. how in that framework that is
already agreed how we can come up with something that concerns the questions he raised. no inspection of military sights and immediate lifting of all sanctions that the day is sewned and also on cuba i want to ask, as you discuss the state sponsor of terrorism list, with president castro. there is a issue of the 45 day waiting period. i know your agreement is eager to have the recommendation remove and we move ahead quickly. cubans have raised questions about the 45 days and how something could go wrong in the 45 days and it doesn't give them access to the kinds of things that they can have once if and when they were removed from the list. is it your belief once they are
removed that there is no impedeiment to open the embassy once you approve their removal of the list. >> i will make one last run of iran. >> there is a political framework outlines satisfied between iran and p5 plus one. ? some cases there was great specificities. and the reductions of takes place in the number of centerfugges. or a facility that does not permit the production grade of weapon's grade uranium. in other cases, there were language of intent and the details matter, and how those details are interpreted are subject to negotiation. so it is not accurate to suggest
and i don't think my team has suggested that somehow everything is all done and it is just a matter of writing it up. there is a situation in which we have a framework if implemented powerful and will achieve our dpoel of making sure that iran doesn't have a nuclear weapon. but the details make a difference of how they are structured. i guaranteed there will be tough negotiations around that. and that is what i said the first day when i announced we had an agreement and that's what we continue to say. there is no contradiction here. keep in mind, when we started the process off even with the interim agreement with the jpoan in the beginning of this whole thing. there was a si