December 21st, 2014
03:48 PM ET

Sen. John McCain responds to President Obama on N. Korea, Russia & Cuba with CNN's Candy Crowley

Senator John McCain (R-AZ) joined CNN’s Candy Crowley to respond to her interview with President Obama, specifically on the topics of North Korea’s cyber-attack on Sony Pictures, Cuba, Guantanamo Bay, and Vladimir Putin.

 The interview aired Sunday, December 21st, on CNN at 9AM and 12PM EST

 Text highlights and a transcript of the discussion are below

 MANDATORY CREDIT: CNN’s “State of the Union with Candy Crowley”

 TEXT HIGHLIGHTS

McCain on President Obama calling cyber-attack “cyber vandalism”: I think, again, the president is - does not understand that this is a new - this is a manifestation of a new form of warfare. When you destroy economies, when you are able to impose censorship on the world and especially the United States of America it's more than vandalism. It's a new form of warfare that we're involved in and we need to react and react vigorously, including reimposing sanctions that were lifted under the Bush administration, including other actions and that will squeeze them more economically and - but most of all, we have to really work together with the president and the Congress to come up with counters and abilities to respond, but more importantly to prevent.”

McCain on President Obama’s comments regarding Vladimir Putin: “I think that it's bizarre to think that any action on the part of the President of the United States has proved any deterrence to Vladimir Putin. We won't even give defensive weapons to the Ukrainians. We - President Obama - and we should be thanking the Saudis, who have allowed the value of a barrel of oil to go to the point where it's affecting dramatically Vladimir Putin's economy. It has nothing to do with any action taken by the President of the United States.”

 McCain on normalizing relations with Cuba: Well, because we would be rewarding the failure that they haven't done anything. If they had shown some progress, I think maybe that it would be what we are doing is endorsing their 50 years of oppression and repression in Cuba.”

 McCain on Guantanamo Bay: I always wanted to close Guantanamo, but I wanted to transfer those prisoners to maximum security prisons, prisons in the United States of America that the president has never had a plan for that. And he didn't mention to you that some 27 percent or 30 percent of these people we have released have reentered the fight. It's outrageous to release people that are going to reenter the fight and try to kill Americans and attack America. And that's the problem with his idea of doing, quote, "everything" he can.”

 

Full Transcript available after the jump.

FULL POST

December 21st, 2014
03:16 PM ET

Candy Crowley: 27 Amazing Years at CNN

Candy Crowley signs off one last time after 27 years with CNN.

December 21st, 2014
12:12 PM ET

CNN's Candy Crowley interviews President Barack Obama

For his last interview of the year, President Obama sat down, exclusively, with CNN’s Candy Crowley to discuss North Korea’s cyber-attack on Sony Pictures, normalizing relations with Cuba, Russia, Iran, race relations in America and Guantanamo Bay.

The interview aired Sunday, December 21st, on CNN at 9AM and 12PM EST

Text highlights and a transcript of the discussion are below

 MANDATORY CREDIT: CNN’s “State of the Union with Candy Crowley”

TEXT HIGHLIGHTS

President Obama on Sony Pictures decision to pull ‘The Interview’:Well, look, I was pretty sympathetic to the fact that they've got business considerations they've got to make. And, you know, had they talked to me directly about this decision, I might have called the movie theater chains and distributors and asked them what that story was.

 But what I was laying out was a principle that I think this country has to abide by. We believe in free speech. We believe in the right of artistic expression and things that powers that be might not like.

 And if we set a precedent in which a dictator in another country can disrupt, through cyber, you know, a company's distribution chain or its products and, as a consequence, we start censoring ourselves, that's a problem.”

 President Obama on if the cyber-attack was an act of war by North Korea: No, I don't think it was an act of war. I think it was an act of cyber vandalism that was very costly, very expensive. We take it very seriously. We will respond proportionately, as I said.”

President Obama on normalizing relations with Cuba: “So Cuba offers us an example of an opportunity to try something different. For 50 years, we've tried to see if we can overthrow the regime through isolation. It hasn't worked. If we engage, we have the opportunity to influence the course of events at a time when there's going to be some generational change in that country. And I think we should seize it and I intend to do so.”

 President Obama on why the president feels it is important to continue trying to close Gitmo: I'm going to be doing everything I can to close it. It is a - it is something that continues to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world, the fact that these folks are being held. It is contrary to our values and it is wildly expensive. We're spending millions for each individual there. And we have drawn down the population there significantly.”

Full Transcript available after the jump.

FULL POST

December 14th, 2014
01:17 PM ET

Sen. Schumer & Rep. King on State of the Union

CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley features interviews with Senator Chuck Schumer and Representative Peter King. Senator Schumer described the dynamics of the internal and external relations of the Republican and Democratic parties.  He also provided his prediction on the 2016 elections, as a strong proponent of Hillary Clinton.  Representative King, member of the House Intelligence Committee, defends the CIA following the scathing new Senate report about the agency’s interrogation methods.

TEXT HIGHLIGHTS

Sen. Schumer on the internal schisms in congress: “I think the soul of the Democratic party is economic issues, and I think on economic issues, we are united. And I think Elizabeth Warren, even if people don’t agree with her, she’s constructive. She’s not like Ted Cruz.”

Rep. King on the CIA : “I think it’s important for people like myself and people in the media to speak out and say the people at the CIA did an excellent job, that the people of the CIA operated under the most extenuating circumstances, that they’re responsible for stopping attacks against the United States and that we have to stop this self-loathing.”


Full transcript after the jump. FULL POST

December 14th, 2014
01:13 PM ET

MA Gov. democrats who lost in midterms “didn’t stand for anything"

Today on CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley, as Democrats look to repair the damage from this year’s elections, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D-MA) offers his prescription for what ails his party, bridging America’s racial divide, and the nature of capitalism in America.

 

TEXT HIGHLIGHTS

On the results of the midterm elections:I think the reason in the outcome in the elections is because Democrats didn't stand for anything.  And the Democrats who lost are the ones who were saying, look, we're just not as bad as the other guys and gals.  I think that we are a party that believes in the American dream.  We believe in the collaboration between government and the private sector to enable the American dream. ”

On the possible Democratic candidates in 2016 : “I'm a great admirer of Senator Warren, as I am of Secretary Clinton, and the others who are - who are circling around...”

On the recent protests across America: “They weren't interested in engagement, because part of the point was to be disruptive.  And I think it does beg some questions, what is it we're trying to accomplish beyond disruption?  Certainly, part of it is to make sure people understand just how broadly the concern lies around being understood, and not being fearful, either as unarmed black men or as police.  And that huge chasm of misunderstanding between the two has got to be bridged.”

On being business friendly: ” I just don't believe that markets solve every problem in everybody's life.  And I don't think government solves every problem in everybody's life.  I think they have to work alongside each other. “

Full transcript after the jump.
FULL POST

December 8th, 2014
01:41 PM ET

Bush refutes CIA torture report to CNN's Candy Crowley

On Sunday, December 7th, CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley featured an exclusive interview with the 43rd President of the United States, George W. Bush.  Candy Crowley sat down with President Bush at Moody Air Force Base in Georgia to discuss the legacy of President George H.W. Bush which is the subject of his new book, 41: A Portrait of My Father. In addition, he weighed in on impending release of the Senate Intelligence Committee report on CIA interrogation tactics and other topics.

Additional portions of the interview will air this Sunday, December 14 at 9AM and 12 PM EST.

TEXT HIGHLIGHT

President Bush on the CIA Report:

CROWLEY:  I would be remiss if I didn’t ask you at some point in this interview about the Senate Intelligence Committee report that’s coming out some time next week.

BUSH:  Yes, yes.

CROWLEY:  About the CIA and what it did during your era.

BUSH:  Yes, I haven’t seen the report.

CROWLEY:  I haven’t either.  I would expect it’ll be somewhat critical.

BUSH:  But I’ll tell you this - well, first of all, as I understand it, it’ll be critical but there’s also going to be a report of - a counter report coming out of the agency. FULL POST

December 7th, 2014
11:37 AM ET

Candy Crowley's Exclusive Interview with George W. Bush

The 43rd President of the United States, George W. Bush, joins CNN's State of the Union for an in-depth interview ranging from childhood experiences to United States policy.

Candy Crowley sat down with President Bush earlier this week at Moody Air Force Base in Georgia to discuss the legacy of President George H.W. Bush which is the subject of his new book, 41: A Portrait of My Father. In addition, he weighed in on Jeb Bush's prospects for 2016, his relationship with the Clinton family, and race relations in the United States. President Bush stated that despite his close relationship with the Clintons, his brother Jeb would "absolutely" beat Hillary in the 2016 elections. According to the former president, race relations have improved but it is still sad to see race as "an emotional, divisive part of life." The former president also shared his views on Vladimir Putin, a man he once fished with, and the situation in Iraq.

TEXT HIGHLIGHTS

On Putin, his former fishing partner: “Well, I think he's become more zero-sum type thinker.  In other words, I don't - haven't talked to him in years, but it's almost as if he says that if the - if the West wins, I lose.  And if I win, the West loses.  As opposed to what can we do together to enhance our respective positions?”

On race relations in the United States and protests in New York:  “I thought: how sad.  The verdict was hard to understand, but I hadn't seen all the details.  But it's sad that race continues to play such a, you know, kind of emotional, divisive part of life.  I remember back in when I was a kid, in the '70s, and there was race riots with cities being burned.  And I just think we've improved.  I had dinner with Condi the other night and we talked about this subject, and, yes, she just said you got understand that there are a lot of, you know, black folks around that are just incredibly more and more distrusting of law enforcement.  Which is a shame, because law enforcement's job is to protect everybody.

On ISIS and Iraq: “first thing is there has to be a goal, and the president has laid out what I think is a good goal, and that is to degrade and defeat ISIS.  Once you state the goal, then you have to put plans in place to achieve the goal.  And seems like to me the initial plans are being adjusted, and all I hope is that we succeed, because ISIS is lethal.  They're lethal not only for the people in the neighborhoods in which they live; they're lethal to our security.”

On Bush 41’s advice before and during Bush 43’s presidency: “he didn't want to steer us.  Not only in our career choices but once we had made choices on how to - on how to make decisions, in my case. Now, if I ever wanted advice, of course he was always there.  And I tried - it's hard for people to understand.  I fully understand that.  But I hope when people read this, and I hope they do, is that they understand that when he reached across and grabbed my arm after the speech on September the 14 in the National Cathedral, I mean, incredibly emotional moment for me, it was in many ways symbolic of what he'd meant for me as president.  In other words, he was a comforter.  A lot.  Because he had been through what I was going through and he knew that he - you know, each president has to make up their own mind.  They have to develop their own team of people they trust.  He knew that he got a lot of advice as president, a lot of it not grounded in knowledge, and that - and so he was confident I had a good team and that I would make decisions based upon good judgments of a lot of good advisers.”

Full transcript after the jump. FULL POST

December 5th, 2014
03:48 PM ET

Bush 43 on State of the Union with Candy Crowley

On Sunday December 5th, State of the Union with Candy Crowley will feature an exclusive interview with the 43rd President of the United States, George W. Bush.

The interview airs this Sunday, December 5th, on CNN at 9AM and 12PM EST.

Text excerpts from the interview are below. FULL POST

November 30th, 2014
01:29 PM ET

FAA "hundreds of cases" of operating drones "carelessly" & "recklessly"

Today on CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley, Michael Huerta, head of the Federal Aviation Administration, joins Candy Crowley to discuss the surge of near-collisions between drones and commercial aircraft, the FAA’s new “highways in the sky” program, and the busiest travel days of the year.

TEXT HIGHLIGHTS

On unmanned aircrafts: “Unmanned aircraft has both great potential as a use for things like surveillance of power lines and so forth, but we care about first and foremost maintaining a safe aviation system. So how we integrate them into our national airspace system is done with safety as our paramount concern.”

On the surge of near-collisions between drones & commercial aircraft: “That is certainly a serious concern. And it is something that I am concerned about. That's why we are very focused on education. That's why we're also focused on enforcement. We have enforced hundreds of these cases, where we have seen someone operating one of these things carelessly and recklessly and posing a danger to aircraft, and that can't happen.”

On handling air traffic & the NextGen program: “Every year for holidays, the Defense Department releases a lot of airspace to us. And that enables us to actually plan different highways in the sky. Also, over the last year, we have been making a lot of investments in making the existing highways much more efficient. And that's a big thing, because this program, our NextGen air traffic control program, enables us to have much more efficient arrivals and departures at busy airports. Here in Washington, we just rolled out some new procedures that, collectively, will save airlines about 2.5 million gallons of fuel a year."

Full transcript is available after the jump.
FULL POST

November 23rd, 2014
12:26 PM ET

Sen Graham: Benghazi Report is "full of crap"

Today on CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC)  speaks to Gloria Borger about the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation into the Benghazi attacks which concludes that there was not a White House cover-up. Condemning both the Obama Administration and the intelligence community, Senator Graham states that he considers the Benghazi report “crap” and “garbage”. Senator Graham says he does not  “believe that the report is accurate, given the role that Mike Morell (then deputy CIA director) played in misleading the Congress on two different occasions”. He also indicates that “the House Intelligence Committee is doing a lousy job policing their own” referring to the CIA. In addition, Senator Graham did not rule out running for the presidency in 2016 and chided the Republican party on immigration, saying “shame on us” for not passing a bill in the House.

"I am so disappointed in my party, my president, and my country." – Senator Lindsey Graham

TEXT HIGHLIGHTS

On the House Intelligence Committee’s Benghazi report:  “I'm saying the House Intelligence Committee is doing a lousy job policing their own.  I'm saying that anybody who has followed Benghazi at all knows that the CIA deputy director did not come forward to tell Congress what role he played in changing the talking points.  And the only way we knew he was involved is when he told a representative at the White House, I'm going to do a hard review of this, a hard rewrite.”

On the placing the blame for Benghazi: “This report puts all the blame on the State Department and absolves the intelligence community.  When the Department of Defense committees looked at it, the Department of Defense was held blameless.  At the end of the day, everybody is pointing fingers to everybody else.”

On immigration reform: “Shame on us as Republicans.  Shame on us as Republicans for having a body that cannot generate a solution to an issue that it's national security, that's cultural and it's economic.  The Senate has done this three times.”

A full transcript of the interview is available after the jump. FULL POST

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