From: Cook, David [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Tuesday, March 10, 2015 12:42 PM
To: Velz, Peter
Subject: Travel Pool Report #3 -- Schultz Gaggle
Travel Pool # 3
March 10, 2015
Eric Schultz Gaggle
Schultz said that in Atlanta the president would talk about “the rising challenge of helping students afford a higher education and manage their debts.” He noted that before departure for Atlanta the president signed a memorandum directing the Department of Education and other federal agencies “to work across government to help borrowers afford their monthly loan payments through 19 executive actions.”
On why Schultz why Admiral Sandy Winnefeld was on board Air Force One. Her is “a proud, active alum of Georgia Tech University. He is joining us in that capacity.”
On whether there was anything specific the White House was looking to hear from Hillary Clinton’s forthcoming press conference. “I don’t have anything for you on a press conference that hasn’t happened yet.”
On whether there was an expectation that emails Secretary Clinton has asked State to turn over would include emails from POTUS. He said emails from the president “would have been preserved under the presidential records act.” Those emails turned over by Secretary Clinton “the State Department by matter of course goes over those documents.” He added “I am going to let that process play out before I judge it.”
On whether the White would claim executive privilege on presidential emails with Secretary Clinton. The question “is jumping about 10,000 steps ahead of where we are. So let’s just let the State Department review that process under their regular order.”
On the White House response to Democrats on the Benghazi panel who want Clinton emails on that subject prioritized and released earlier. “I am going to defer” to the State Department on the review.
On whether the president has his own private email. “Part of the security precautions we take” around the president’s email “is not talking about it much publicly.”
On whether Schultz and his colleagues are sick of answering questions about Hillary Clinton. “Our view is that we take these [email]guidelines seriously…so we are happy to engage you in questions about this.”
On whether the college announcements today are small potatoes. “I would dispute your characterization of this…I do agree with you there is lots more to be done…”
On WH reaction to the foreign minister of Iran saying today the US is unreliable . The GOP senators’ letter” was a flagrant, partisan attempt to interfere with the negotiations. As my colleagues have said we have one president at a time in the United States. …the letter that was released yesterday is without precedent in the past two centuries…we feel like that letter was reckless, was irresponsible was misguided.”
On whether, given Bibi’s speech and the Republican senators’ letter, doesn’t Iran
If talks fail:
Shultz noted that the negotiations with Iran are not bilateral. "We are involved in a complicated, sensitive negotiation" with members of the P5+1. He reiterated that the letter from Republicans was "misguided."
He noted the many other times that presidents have made agreements without Congressional involvement: basing agreements for troops, agreement with Russia to rid Syria of chemical weapons, withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan.
He said there is a role for Congress, noting the imposition of sanctions that has already taken place.
On Menendez, declined to comment on whether the administration would exert any claim of privilege in the investigation, saying: "I think you are presupposing a lot of facts that haven't necessarily been stipulated, so I'm not going to have anything to engage you on that hypothetical."
On Myanmar beatings: "We of course deplore any violence. The values of human rights and fundamental freedoms are something the president holds dear."
On lethal aid to Ukraine: He basically said POTUS has still not decided whether to send lethal aid to Ukraine. "We do not have an update from when the president addressed this" during the recent Merkel visit.
But he also restated POTUS's belief that "this is a conflict that has to be resolved at the negotiating table."
On Scott Walker, Schultz rejected the idea that POTUS statement represented injecting himself into the 2016 race.
"Our bottom line is this is an issue that we have spoken out on whenever it rears its ugly head.:
"Instead of rolling back workers rights, states including Wisconsin should be expanding worker's rights like raising the minimum wage and paid sick leave."
All of this with major thanks to co-pooler Mike Shear of The New York Times