President Obama slams CBS journalist Major Garrett
President Obama found it necessary to slam CBS reporter Major Garrett for a disrespectful Right Wing talking point type question. The disrespect that many reporters inflict on this president is unforgivable. The president showed control, calmness, and grace even as it was evident he was extremely upset with the baseless question. Following is the exchange that took place.
Major Garrett: Thank you, Mr. President. As you well know, there are four Americans in Iran, three held on trumped-up charges that, according to your administration, one whereabouts unknown.
Can you tell the country, sir, why you are content, with all the fanfare around this deal, to leave the conscience of this nation, the strength of this nation, unaccounted for in relation to these four Americans?
And last week, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said under no circumstances should there be any relief for Iran in terms of ballistic missiles or conventional weapons. It is perceived that was a last-minute capitulation in these negotiations.
Many in the Pentagon feel you've left the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff high out to dry. Could you comment?
President Obama: I've got to give you credit, Major, for how you craft those questions.
The notion that I am content as I celebrate with American citizens languishing in Iranian jails, Major, that's nonsense, and you should know better. I've met with the families of some of those folks. Nobody's content. And our diplomats and our teams are working diligently to try to get them out.
Now, if the question is why we did not tie the negotiations to their release, think about the logic that that creates. Suddenly, Iran realizes you know what? Maybe we can get additional concessions out of the Americans by holding these individuals. Makes it much more difficult for us to walk away if Iran somehow thinks that a nuclear deal is dependent in some fashion on the nuclear.
And by the way, if we had walked away from the nuclear deal, we'd still be pushing them just as hard to get these folks out. That's why those issues are not connected. But we are working every single day to try to get them out, and won't stop until they're out and rejoined with their families.