FW: in-town pool report #1

-----Original Message-----
From: Mark Matthews [mailto:xxx@email.com]
Sent: Thursday, September 10, 2015 12:43 PM
To: Allen, Jessica L. EOP
Subject: in-town pool report #1

Pool led into Roosevelt Room at 11:45 a.m. where POTUS sat with roughly a dozen veterans and Gold Star Mothers. To the POTUS’ left was Secretary of State John Kerry. (Please find a list of participants at the end of the pool report, via the White House. For those who received an earlier list, the below has been updated by the WH.)

POTUS spoke for about seven minutes -- the main thrust was that these veterans and mothers presented a good case in favor of diplomacy with Iran and against reckless military action.

Specifically, POTUS took aim at “casual threats of military force (and) false promises that military actions will be easy or simple or relatively costless.” “These veterans and their families remind us that is not the case. There are consequences when we rush into war.” As an example POTUS highlighted “two Gold Star Mothers here whose sons gave everything.”

He thanked them all for their willingness to share their stories and “describe the losses they experienced” with members of Congress. That helped create “space” for lawmakers from pressure they might be feeling and allow supporters of the Iran deal to argue their case “on the merits.”

POTUS also said he didn’t want this to be the last time the group made an impact.  “I am hopeful their voices will continue to be heard on a wide range of foreign policy (decisions) because we live in a complicated world and we live in a world where terrible things happen.”

As his talk wrapped up, POTUS noted that “the one principle I want us to remember every time we make a decision is that American power is not restricted” to military intervention. “We have a lot of tools in the toolbox. We have to try to solve problems without resorting to military force.”

Finally, as pool was exiting, POTUS struck up a conversation with Nathan Fletcher (bio below). The topic was teaching. “I miss teaching,” POTUS said. “I don’t miss grading papers.” (h/t Andrew Beatty, AFP)

There’s a lunch lid until 2 p.m.  

VoteVets Participants
* Michelle DeFord, Gold Star Mother
* Paul Eaton, Major General, US Army (Ret.)
* Richard Hegdahl, Petty Officer, US Navy (Ret.)
* Karen Meredith, Gold Star Mother
* Jon Soltz, Chairman, VoteVets
* Lawrence Wilkerson, Colonel, US Army (Ret.)

Truman National Security Project Participants
* Michael Breen, Captain, US Army Veteran, Truman Project Executive Director
* Nathan Fletcher, Staff Sergeant, US Marines Veteran, Truman Project Advisory Board Member
* Kate Hoit, Specialist, US Army Veteran, Truman Defense Council, Class of 2013
* Alex Horton, Specialist, US Army Veteran, Truman Defense Council, Class of 2015
* Zach Iscol, Captain, US Marines Veteran, Truman Fellow, Class of 2010
* Terron Sims II, Captain, US Army Veteran, Truman Fellow, Class of 2006

Mark K. Matthews
Reporter, Washington Bureau
The Denver Post
xxx-xxx-xxxx (newsroom)
xxx-xxx-xxxx (cell phone)
xxx@email.com  @mkmatthews

Show Comments