From: Sarah Wheaton [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Monday, May 18, 2015 01:43 PM
To: Velz, Peter
Subject: travel pool 5 - gaggle
Many thanks to David Nakamura for help with transcription.
Eric Schultz gaggled on AF!.
Opened by talking about Camden (see background in Pool report 2)
Referred questions about scope of limits on equipment to DOJ.
In response to question about possible impact on public safety of local law enforcement not having access to this equipment.
Schultz: “Part of the good work that was done through this working group making sure that we did balance the needs of law enforcement with the sorts of equipment that we found contributed to unrest in communities.”
On the controlled items: “In deploying those, we’ll look for more stringent protocols in terms of more transparency, and more accountability.”
“Ramadi has been contested over the last 18 months.”
“There’s no denying that this is indeed a setback. But there’s also no denying that we will help the Iraqis take back Ramadi.”
No new strategy to preview that’s under contemplation.
“Today we are supporting the Iraqi forces and the government of Iraq with precision airstrikes and advice to the Iraqi forces. Our aircraft are in the air right now and searching for ISIL targets. They will continue to do so until Ramadi is retaken. In fact we have conducted 32 airstrikes in Ramadi in the past 3 weeks, including 8 over the past 24 hours. These strikes will be continuing. ISIL will ultimately be defeated in Ramadi and elsewhere in Iraq because we believe the Iraqi forces have the capacity to ultimately take Ramadi with coalition support.”
Equipment ban and restrictions are part of an executive order; Schultz said he’d check on whether it would expire at the end of term.
(Camden a success story?) “We think Camden does have a remarkable story of making significant success. They are not done. There’s still a lot of work to be done. … We are fully aware of the challenges they face on the ground and the progress they’ve made…. They’ve improved the environment by which the public can register complaints and also broadened the definition of excessive force to capture more complaints. Part of what we’ll be talking about is increased transparency and increased accountability.”
“Overall violent crime statistics show dramatic improvement in Camden since 2012.”
(does prez want to praise some police practices amid complaints about tactics) Schultz said part of the task force mission was to “identify best practices” among local law enforcement agencies. “But Camden is one of those places where they have been able to rebuild the relationship between law enforcement and the community they serve .. and bridge the gap that once existed of deep divide and deep distrust.”
(would WH support two month extension Patriot Act b/c not enough time to pass USA Freedom Act) “Our strategy on these important security matters is to not kick the can down the road. Congress has known of this impending deadline for months and months. The June First expiration should not be taking anyone by surprise.”
(Trade is WH confident like McConnell and Ryan on Sunday shows) “We are confident in our argument. We are confident these are the types of trade deals that would be good for American workers, good for American jobs.”
(on ISIS fighter killed over weekend; how high was he) “He was a senior ISIL leader, who among other things had a senior role in overseeing ISIL’s oil and gas operations, which is a key source of revenue that enables the terrorist organization to carry out their brutal tactics.”
White House Reporter