Obama Transcript on today's 'Meet the Press'

Here is the transcript for 'Meet the Press' today with Obama


A definite must-read.  This is a tough show to go on- he spends most of the time on the defensive  He does have nice things to say about Hillary, which I appreciate, but every tough question is put to him- I'm not sure why people go on the show, they certainly get hammered all during it

Here are some samples of some of the questions, read the entire interview at the link or watch the show- it repeats again tonight.

MR. RUSSERT:  Mayor Giuliani said Obama, Clinton have never managed a city, managed a state, run a business, met a payroll.  How can they possibly want the top executive job in the country?

MR. RUSSERT:  A year ago, you were asked about Hillary Clinton.  And this the exchange.  “Where do you find yourself having the biggest differences with Hillary Clinton, politically?” Obama:  “You know, I think very highly of Hillary.  The more I get to know her, the more I admire her.  I think she’s the most disciplined—one of the most disciplined people I’ve ever met.  She’s one of the toughest.  She’s got an extraordinary intelligence.” “She is—she’s somebody who’s in this stuff for the right reasons.  She’s passionate about moving the country forward on issues like healthcare and children.  So it’s not clear to me what differences we’ve had since I’ve been in the Senate.” Do you still hold to that?  There aren’t any differences?

MR. RUSSERT:  But, Senator, you said last year—earlier this year that everything should be on the table for Social Security, including looking at raising retirement age, indexing benefits, and then suddenly you said, “No, no.  Those aren’t off—on the table; I’m taking them off the table.”

MR. RUSSERT:  You were not in the Senate in October of 2002.  You did give a speech opposing the war.  But Senator Clinton’s campaign will say since you’ve been a senator there’s been no difference in your record.  And other critics will say that you’ve not been a leader against the war, and they point to this:  In July of ‘04, Barack Obama, “I’m not privy to Senate intelligence reports.  What would I have done?  I don’t know,” in terms of how you would have voted on the war.  And then this:  “There’s not much of a difference between my position on Iraq and George Bush’s position at this stage.” That was July of ‘04.  And this:  “I think” there’s “some room for disagreement in that initial decision to vote for authorization of the war.” It doesn’t seem that you are firmly wedded against the war, and that you left some wiggle room that, if you had been in the Senate, you may have voted for it.

MR. RUSSERT:  Some involved in the anti-movement have said that in 2004, 2005, 2006 Barack Obama voted to fund the war.  Every time there was a proposal to have a fixed date withdrawal you said no, it would be a slap in the face to the American troops, it may create bloodshed and more division, that American credibility was at stake, that you were not a leader in trying to stop the war until you ran for president and got to Iowa and got to New Hampshire and had a sense of the anti-war, war fervor in the Democratic base.


MR. RUSSERT:  Where was the leadership?

R. RUSSERT:  I want to talk about Iran, because there’s been a discussion about a vote she cast that you mentioned earlier.  Back in March there was a resolution in the Senate, and here’s what it said:  “The Secretary of State should designate the Iranian Revolutionary Guards as a Foreign Terrorist Organization.” And you voted for that.  Now, The Washington Post analyzed your position and Senator Clinton’s, and this is what they editorialized:  “So is there any real difference between Mr. Obama and Ms. Clinton on Iran?  Mr. Obama contends that one distinction lies in Ms. Clinton’s acceptance of language in the September 26, ‘07” “resolution that ‘it is’” “‘critical national interest of the United States’ to stop Iran from creating a Hezbollah-like force in Iraq.  Mr. Obama claims that such language is ‘saber-rattling’ that could be used by the Bush administration to justify an attack on Iran.  This is hard to fathom.  Not only is there no mention of the use of U.S.” forces “in the resolution, but last year Mr. Obama gave a speech in which he said it ‘is in our national interest to prevent’ Iran or Syrian from using Iraq as ‘a staging area from which to attack Israel or other countries.’”

So if you have the same concern about using—Iran using that as a staging area, you would have a position very similar to Senator Clinton’s.

MR. RUSSERT:  You’ve been talking a lot about lobbyists and money in politics.  This is The Boston Globe in August:  in eight—“Obama’s eight years in the Illinois Senate, from 1996 to 2004, almost two-thirds of the money he raised for his campaigns came from” political action committees, “corporate contributions,” “unions, according to Illinois Board of Elections records.  He tapped financial service firms, real estate developers, healthcare providers, oil companies, and many other corporate interests, the records show.” You now talk about, “Well, I’m not taking any money from lobbyists.” You do take money from state lobbyists.  You took $1.5 million from federal lobbying—employees who work for federal lobbying firms.  There seems to be a real inconsistency between the amount of money you raise and where it’s coming from, and your rhetoric.

MR. RUSSERT:  You talked about Senator Clinton having records released from the Clinton Library regarding her experience as first lady, and yet when you were asked about, “What about eight years in the state senate of Illinois,” you said, “I don’t know.” Where, where are the—where are your records?

These are just bits of it, you can read the whole thing at the link.  People scream 'copyright' if you put too much.  I think he does the best he can answering but no one seems to come out looking good after an interview with Russert.

Tags: Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton (all tags)


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