(CBS News) -- Below is a transcripts of the April 4th edition of "Face the Nation". Guests include: Cardinal Dolan, Deval Patrick, Holly Williams, Allen Pizzey, Seth Doane, Peggy Noonan, David Ignatius, Michael Duffy, and John Dickerson.
ANNOUNCER: From CBS News in Washington, FACE THE NATION, substituting for Bob Schieffer CBS This morning co-host Norah O'Donnell.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Today on FACE THE NATION ... the pope celebrates his second Easter and Boston hopes for a safe marathon
But first we'll get the latest from South Korea as the death toll from the ferry disaster rises as hundreds are still missing. Then we'll go to Rome as thousands gather for Easter mass with the Pope. He's led the Catholic Church to newfound popularity -- we'll talk about the Pope Francis effect with the archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan and get his message on this holy day. We'll also hear who HE thinks should be a 2016 Presidential candidate...
CARDINAL DOLAN SOT: I like Jeb Bush a lot.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Anybody else you'd like to see run for President?
CARDINAL DOLAN: (Laughs) Well yeah, Pope Francis. (laughs)
NORAH O'DONNELL: Plus, a year after tragedy struck the Boston Marathon, we'll hear from Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick about preparations for Mondays' race. And we'll talk about it all with Peggy Noonan of the Wall Street Journal, Michael Duffy of TIME, David Ignatius of the Washington Post and our own John Dickerson. 60 years of News because this is FACE THE NATION.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Good morning again, and happy Easter, and happy Passover. We're going to hear from the Archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan in just a moment, but first, breaking news out of South Korea, where the death toll in the ferry accident now exceeds 50, and hundreds are still missing. Seth Doane is in Mokpo, South Korea with the latest.
SETH DOANE: Good morning to you, Norah. That's right. The death toll has jumped significantly, in part because finally divers are able to get into that submerged ferry. They are describing scenes of working in murky water with heavy currents that are just pushing that submerged ferry back and forth. But they have been getting in there, and they have been pulling out bodies - some of them students. We were with family members as those names were revealed. There is a growing frustration also among family members. We saw protests on the street today and scuffles with police as family members have protested the slow rescue. And late today, we actually got into the hospital, where a crew member is being treated. We asked him about that slow evacuation, and he told us that he was waiting for evacuation orders from the captain. He said it was really only the captain's decision to make that call. I asked what it was like when they finally did make that call. He said that the ship at that point was sloping so much, it was just too difficult to reach most of the passengers, Norah.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Seth Doane, thank you.
In the Vatican this morning, Pope Francis delivered his second Easter message in St. Peter's Square. Our Alan Pizzey is there, and Alan, what was the Pope's message today?
ALAN PIZZEY: Good morning, Norah. Well, you may not believe it, but the piazza behind me was sun drenched when the Pope spoke, and there were about 150,000 people jammed in here listening to him. In keeping with the theme of his papacy, he derided what he called the immense wastefulness in the world when so many people go hungry. But the message is called "urbi et orbi" to the city and the world, and he used that to plunge straight into international diplomacy. He called on the international community to what he called negotiate immediately; boldly negotiate a long overdue peace in Syria. And the Pope and the Vatican are proving masters at tailoring the message to the moment, and noting that this year, the Orthodox Easter and the Catholic Easter fall at the same time. Some of the hymns were in Russian, and then there was a deft segway into a call for peace in the Ukraine. This Pope has been noted for doing things off the cuff, but he stayed right on his message today, which was translated into six languages for the official handout. He spoke only in Italian. And then when he did his final moment at the end of it all - he does his little tour in the Popemobile - this time he didn't go down the Via della Conciliazione - the main street leading to the Vatican - probably because it was packed with pilgrims. And he didn't reach out or kiss any babies or hug anybody. But he did do once again the kind of gestures that have pulled people into him and that make a lot of people listen to his message. So his second "urbi et orbi" message to the city and the world was very Francis, if you will, and it was extremely well received, Norah.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Alan Pizzey, thank you.
Earlier I sat down with a man who many think could be the first American pope, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the archbishop of New York.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Cardinal, thank you so much for joining us.
CARDINAL DOLAN: I'm the one who is grateful, Norah. Blessed Easter.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Blessed Easter to you. What is your message for Holy Week?
CARDINAL DOLAN: Ah, listen, what should we think of? What are you covering on this show? You're going to talk about Ukraine, we're going to recall the slaughter in Boston a year ago, you look at all the darkness, the dreariness, the reasons to be sad and defeated in the world today. And what does Holy Week and Easter talk about? What is Passover talking about? The victory of good over evil. Light over darkness, life over death. We believe, Jews and Christians -- believers hold fast to the truth that God has the last word...
NORAH O'DONNELL: You know we have been doing polling at CBS News for decades and we just found in our last poll that now more people than ever feel that the church is in touch with their needs.
CARDINAL DOLAN: Good to hear.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Why do you think that is?
CARDINAL DOLAN: ...I think at a practical level, especially for us as Catholics, it's got to be Pope Francis. He has really ignited the imagination of the world, and for once, finally, it's almost like people are saying, "Wow. There's reason to cheer, there's reason to hope, there's a good guy. The good guys are winning in the church."...People want the church to succeed. People want religion and faith and spirituality to work. People in general are on the side of virtue and goodness, and everything that's noble and decent in the human person. And when you see somebody like Pope Francis that can tap into that and just seem to emanate that, and call that forth from everybody, people are going to take a second look at religion and say "Wow, maybe belief is worth it."
NORAH O'DONNELL: But what is it about Pope Francis?
CARDINAL DOLAN: I wish I knew and I wish he could bottle it, because I'd order a case (laughter), because I need it. You know what I think it is? Two words: sincerity and simplicity. We have a world that can kind of detect frauds. We have a world that is a little tired maybe, of marketing and polls and PR stuff, and here you've got a guy who is just so genuine and sincere, he doesn't need anybody to script him, he doesn't need any pro to say, "Oh, you ought to go there, you ought to do this," he just does it with a genuineness and a naturalness, that people are shaking their heads and saying, "This guy's the real thing..."
NORAH O'DONNELL: There's a question, however, about whether it's a lot of style, and whether it has been matched yet by substance --
CARDINAL DOLAN: Sure.
NORAH O'DONNELL: -- in terms of reforms of the Church. I mean, he has, for instance, apologized for predator priests in the sexual abuse scandal, but he's not yet met with victims of sexual abuse by priests. Should he?
CARDINAL DOLAN: I think he should and I think he will. Pope Benedict did, so I think he will. We've got to give him some time. He knows that's a towering problem. You know what he's showing us, Norah? You remember last year? You were -- I think you were there during the conclave, and the congregations that met ahead of time -- those ten days before we actually sealed ourselves in the Sistine Chapel and the college of the Cardinals met in confidence every day -- we spoke our mind, and Jorge Bergoglio, who was there, listened intently. And now we know it for sure, because he's doing a lot of stuff that the Cardinals said, "This has got to be taken care of." The Cardinals spoke about the sexual abuse of minors and said we cannot run from this, we cannot deny this, this is a hideous deep wound in the life of the church, and it must be addressed head on. He's doing that.
NORAH O'DONNELL: We also saw Pope Francis wash the feet of twelve people, including a Muslim and a woman. How remarkable is that?
CARDINAL DOLAN: Isn't that beautiful? And you know where that comes from, the last supper that was on Holy Thursday. We do that, I did that at St. Patrick's, I had twelve young people, from the --
NORAH O'DONNELL: -- but last year was the first time he did a woman, washed the feet of a woman.
CARDINAL DOLAN: Or any Pope did, you're right...but you're on to something. When Pope Francis said, I want kind of a -- I want these twelve people to symbolize every religion, both sexes, every background. And to think that he did it at a prison. I mean here's the Pope, who we believe represents Jesus on earth, we Catholics believe that, kneeling down and washing the feet and kissing the feet of those twelve people. Powerful gesture...
NORAH O'DONNELL: It was interesting to hear the Pope say in mass that he occasionally feels bored or lonely. When was the last time we heard a Pope talk about loneliness?
CARDINAL DOLAN: Isn't that beautiful? Yeah. He is...actually, Norah, when's the last time we heard Popes speak about themselves? ...I'd like to attribute it to the fact that, not only is he a genuine, good human being, he's also a Jesuit, as you know. Now, part of the Jesuit spirituality -- the Jesuits were founded by St. Ignatius Loyola -- St. Ignatius says, you know, part of the data, part of the stuff of our prayer and our meditation and our talking to God are our own experiences...when he talks about his grandma, when he talks about growing up, when he talks about falling asleep, when he talks about boring homilies, when he...(laughter)...those are good things, and most people in the world are saying, "Oh wow, I'm glad I'm not by myself, even the Pope falls asleep sometimes when he's saying his prayers."
NORAH O'DONNELL: What changes do you think the Catholic Church will make?
CARDINAL DOLAN: ...Whenever you talk about change, reform, transformation, which are big words, which Jesus often talked about -- first and foremost we're always talking about what? Inside, in the human heart: conversion of life. Going from selfishness to selflessness. Going from sin to grace. Going from hate to love. Going from bitterness to forgiveness. That's the kind of change conversion, transformation that is at the heart of the Christian message. You have heard Pope Francis say that...he says first and foremost I've got to change myself, and the I've got to call all of you to the kind of authentic change, the invitation and conversion of heart that's at the core of the message of Jesus. So that's the basic change, but I think we'll see some change in structure. We already see a change in style. You used that word, and I'm glad you did, Norah.
NORAH O'DONNELL: But I think the question that Catholics and many have from watching the Church is: yes there's been a stylistic change; yes we've seen public opinion change and people become more connected with the Church. Now comes the question about what real reforms will the Church make, and I hear from you that it's internal, that there aren't any plans for any changes at the Church.
CARDINAL DOLAN: Yeah. And we can't diminish that. But you've got to remember, Norah...Christianity, like Judaism, is a revealed religion. It's an inherited religion. We believe that God has told us certain things about himself and ourselves, and we can't tamper with that. Now, we can kind of redirect the way we teach it or express it, and, boy, this Pope is doing that on steroids. But to the substance of it: can't, can't, can't. Sometimes we wish we could. Okay. I wish I could change, for instance, the Lord's teaching on forgiveness, because there are certain people in my life I find it very difficult to forgive. But I can't change it! Because it comes right from Jesus; he calls us to forgive people. I wish he didn't. I've got to try to change my life to meet up to his teaching, not to tamper with his teaching.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Really? Who can you not forgive?
CARDINAL DOLAN: Oh, listen (laughter)...better not tell you...but I'm kind of using that as an example of a very tough teaching of Jesus. Most of the time when we think of the tough teachings we want to change, you know what we're talking about: sexual stuff, okay? Divorce and remarriage, or abortion or homosexuality. Those are the things most of the time. When you look at Jesus -- and Francis has reminded us -- what are the real tough teachings he gives us? Well: faith in him, even when life gets tough; hope in him, even when things are very depressing; forgiveness, love, mercy, reaching out to those doing everything in the world not to deserve our love. Those are tough teachings that I wish sometimes Jesus would soften, but he's not, and I've got to pass those on. And I can't tamper with them.
NORAH O'DONNELL: We've seen a remarkable change in the United States in terms of public opinion and legal rights for gay Americans. Do you believe that civil unions are wrong?
CARDINAL DOLAN: ...Here's what I believe. I believe that marriage is a given -- by God, because I'm a man of faith -- but also in the human psyche and human reason and the natural law, that marriage is, at its essence, is between a man and woman; forever, lovingly, faithfully, to bring forth new life and children. I believe we can't tamper with that. Would I do things to protect the civil rights of those who are unable to live up to that? You bet I would, whether that became insurance, whether that became housing, whatever. Do I believe that society could be affected negatively if we tamper with the definition of marriage? Yeah. And that's just not as a man of faith, that's just, I'd like to think, as a loyal American -- that if we tamper with that essential of human relationships - marriage -- we're sooner or later going to come to regret it.
NORAH O'DONNELL: But you've seen the polling. I mean, that's way out of step with most Americans now. When I say that: a majority of Americans, even Republicans.
CARDINAL DOLAN: Yeah, but, you know what, we're used to being out of step...like immigration, capital punishment. The Church is out of step on that too. The polls show that our people aren't with us. So we keep saying, "Well, our job is to teach it, to call people, to try to convince people, to invite people." Even when the polls are against us, we've got to keep at it.
NORAH O'DONNELL: I noticed that you invited former Governor Jeb Bush on your radio program.
CARDINAL DOLAN: Yes. And he's going to come to town.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yes.
CARDINAL DOLAN: You know, to help us plug our Catholic schools. Yeah.
NORAH O'DONNELL: So are you pro Jeb Bush?
CARDINAL DOLAN: (laughs) I like Jeb Bush a lot. Whether I'd be for him as a presidential candidate or not, I don't know, personally. But I sure admire him, and I especially appreciate the priority he gives to education and immigration, by the way.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And why do you admire him?
CARDINAL DOLAN: Well because he -- I found him as I looked at what he did in Florida, Norah, I found him remarkably innovative. He was almost like, for education, what Franklin Roosevelt was for the economy. He said, let's see what works. We can't do business as usual. We've gotta help our public schools, we know that they're terribly flawed. What can we do to improve them? And he experimented. And he went out on a limb, and a lot of things, things began to click in Florida, such that he's rightly proud of this progress that he made in education. And, if you don't mind me blowing our own horn here, he says one of the best things going is Catholic education.
NORAH O'DONNELL: A champion, certainly, of Catholic education.
CARDINAL DOLAN: He is indeed.
NORAH O'DONNELL: So would you like to see him run for President?
CARDINAL DOLAN: Yeah, I think he -- I sure think he'd bring something. Yeah. He'd be good. Yeah.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Anybody else you'd like to see run for President?
CARDINAL DOLAN: (laughs) well yeah, Pope Francis (laughs)...
NORAH O'DONNELL: I want to talk to you about one of the cases that is before the Supreme Court. It's known as the Hobby Lobby case, and they're considering whether private companies should be exempt from the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, and the mandate about whether to provide contraceptive coverage to their employees. Where do you stand?
CARDINAL DOLAN: I would be inspired by the Hobby Lobby...I think they're just true Americans. They're saying, "look: the genius of America is that religious convictions affect the way we act. America is at her strongest, at her best, when people can bring everything into the public square, including their moral, ethical, spiritual, and religious convictions. And the government should never force us to do anything that is contrary to those deepest held convictions." That they're fighting for that, willing to go all the way to the Supreme Court -- boy, they sure have my admiration.
NORAH O'DONNELL: But doesn't that set a dangerous precedent, if a private company can use religion to deny benefits to its employees.
CARDINAL DOLAN: It could. As you know, they're arguing that...and the Supreme Court, in the past, if I understand correctly, has said in general, the bias is on the side of the rights of conscience and religious liberty. There may be occasions when that is so detrimental to the common good that it will outweigh it. Is this one of them? I mean is the ability to buy contraceptives that are now widely available? By Lord, all you have to do is walk into a 7-Eleven or any shop on any street in America and have access to them -- is that right to access those and to have them paid for? Is that such a towering good that it would suffocate the rights of conscience? I don't think so, but I hope the Supreme Court agrees.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Monday is the anniversary of the Boston Marathon. In the year since, what has inspired you about the people of Boston?
CARDINAL DOLAN: Well, far be it for a New Yorker to compliment Boston -- but let me, okay? I found myself cheering on my friend Cardinal Shaun O'Malley, the archbishop of Boston, the pastor, who expressed such gratitude for Boston. Boston has risen up. It's an Easter story, if you want to talk about it. It's a Passover story. Boston has risen up from carnage, from death, from darkness to the most nauseating type of attack on a civilized society at an event that brings people together. They've risen from that. And the victims of that, their families, the whole Boston community, has reminded us once again of the message of Easter. Life is stronger than death. Hope is stronger than despair. And we're not going to let this evil -- we're not going to let this evil destroy us. Life goes on, and probably stronger and grittier than before, because we've come through that darkness. I thank them for that.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Indeed. Cardinal Dolan, thank you so much.
CARDINAL DOLAN: Thank you Norah. Good being with you!
NORAH O'DONNELL: We'll be back in one minute.
NORAH O'DONNELL: We're back now to talk more about Boston. Tomorrow, more than a million people are expected to cheer on some 36,000 runners at the 118th Boston Marathon. Expectations are high for security after the attack on last year's marathon when two backpack bombs exploded near the finish line, killing three people and injuring more than 200. To talk about the race and security preparations is Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, who joins us from Boston. Governor Patrick, good to see you. Thank you so much for joining us on Easter.
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: I'm glad to be with you, Norah. And may I just say thank you to his imminence for the very gracious comments about the spirit of this place and how we have come together and recovered from last year's terrible, terrible tragedy.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Well, we are thinking about Boston. Let me ask you, how safe will it be for Monday's marathon?
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: Very safe. Somebody said it may be the safest place in America tomorrow. But I will say that we've tried to strike a balance between enhanced security and preserving the family feel of this day. One commentator, a friend of ours, Mike Barnacle described the marathon as a 26.2 mile long block party. And there are no strangers here, so we want to maintain that spirit but also have considerably more rigor because of the attention that the marathon got last year, the tragedy that ensued and the demands we think that are quite reasonable for enhanced preparation for this year.
NORAH O'DONNELL: What specific changes have been made since last year?
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: Well, some I can talk about, some I won't. I will say that there'll be considerably more police presence. There are tactical units, strategically placed at different points along the route. There are a number of undercover people and assets that will be deployed.
We had a tabletop exercise, Norah. This is basically a practice session, a daylong practice session. 450 people in the room representing every state, federal and local law enforcement and first responding agencies and municipal officials from the towns and cities along the route. And we practiced different scenarios. So I think we're very, very well prepared.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Despite some of the safety assurances, last week there were two backpacks that had to be detonated. How confident are you that something like this won't happen again?
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: Well, I feel quite confident. I think, in fact, it was the training and preparation of the team that identified those backpacks when they did. One was a hoax, as you know, and not a very funny one. And the other was a camera bag. We are not permitting backpacks at or near the finish line or in those last several hundred yards. And I think there's going to be a sensitivity that many of the spectators have to people bringing parcels closer to the race, and I ask that people respect that.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Has the Boston Police Department or anyone in state law enforcement received specific threat information from the FBI about tomorrow's race?
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: No, Norah, we haven't. And, you know, the intelligence folks often talk about so-called chatter in intelligence channels. And there has not been elevated chatter, as they say. We're not taking that as a sign to sort of stand down. We're very alert. We're very prepared, and we're assuring people as much as we can that it'll be a fun day and a safe one.
NORAH O'DONNELL: You know, I know Boston has successfully hosted a major sporting event since last year's attack, of course, the World Series. Everything went well at Fenway Park. But securing Fenway Park seems a little bit easier than securing a 26 mile route.
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: It's a completely--
NORAH O'DONNELL: How do you do that?
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: --different game. You know, the head of our emergency management team said he would take a stadium over a marathon route any day. Because there's certain defined exits. It's a confined space. This is considerably more challenging, but we also don't want to have it, you know, kind of a race through a militarized zone. So it's about striking a balance, and I think we have struck that balance.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And let me ask you about some of the runners involved in this race. Last Sunday, 60 Minutes profiled Shalane Flanagan who seems to be the hometown favorite.
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: Yes, indeed.
NORAH O'DONNELL: How important would it be do you think for Boston to have a native win on Monday?
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: Well, we're so proud that she's running and so excited about her prospects. I think you'll be able to hear the roar all the way to Washington, D.C. when she goes by.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Well, we will be there on Monday. We're cheering everyone on and hoping as well for a very safe marathon. Governor, thank you for joining us on this Easter.
GOV. DEVAL PATRICK: Great to be with you. Happy Easter.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And we'll be right back.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Tomorrow, all eyes will be on Boston, and we'll be there live from Boston Common on CBS This Morning. We'll talk to Boston Mayor Martin Walsh and have some moving conversations with some running the marathon this year. But now stay tuned. There's a lot more Face the Nation ahead, including our political panel. We'll be right back.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Some of our stations are leaving us now, but for most of you we'll be right back with a lot more FACE THE NATION.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Welcome back to FACE THE NATION ... now our all-star political panel, Michael Duffy is the Deputy Managing Editor for TIME -- the cover story this week is "Finding God in the Dark", Peggy Noonan is a columnist for the Wall Street Journal and author of John Paul the Great: Remembering a Spiritual Father, David Ignatius is a Columnist for the Washington Post, and last but certainly not least -- John Dickerson is our CBS News political director.
We've got a lot to talk about this morning, but first, there was some violence overnight in Ukraine this as pro-Russian protestors continue to control many government buildings in the east... our Holly Williams filed this report from Slavyansk.
HOLLY WILLIAMS: Ukraine's pro-Russian separatists are locked in an uneasy standoff with the country's government. Here in eastern Ukraine the separatists have occupied public buildings in around ten towns and cities and some of those buildings were seized by masked gun wielding militants. Here in the town of Slavyansk there was a fatal shooting last night with reports of at least one person dead though it's still not clear who was responsible. The fear here is really that this will spiral into civil war and split Ukraine in two but this is clearly also a test of Russia and whether Moscow will continue to intervene militarily in its neighboring countries. On Thursday, the U.S., Russia, Ukraine and E.U. reached a deal in Geneva to try to end this crisis. They offered the separatists amnesty if they disarm and leave the buildings they've occupied. But that hasn't happened and Ukraine's government and the U.S. continue to blame Moscow for stirring up unrest here. Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, has denied orchestrating this insurgency but he has also said that if there is violence here Russia has the right to intervene militarily in Ukraine. Holly Williams, CBS News, Slavyansk.
NORAH O'DONNELL: David, let's talk about this growing violence, the diplomatic efforts stalled. What does this say about Secretary Kerry's efforts?
Well, obviously they're not going as far as fast as he had hoped. It was typical that today there was an Easter truce that was violated in eastern Ukraine. I think there are two bad things about what Secretary Kerry negotiated last Thursday in Geneva, and one good thing.
The two bad things are first, the negotiation was done with a gun to the head of the Ukrainian government. Russian troops were massed, maybe 40,000 of them, just across the border. It was not a normal negotiation. And the second thing, you have to say that a few days later, that agreement has not led to the stand down of forces that was discussed.
The good thing is that Russia has begun talking to the Ukrainian government, and that's the only way that this crisis is going to move towards some resolution. It's got to be done by the Ukrainians with Russia, and even today with today's bad news, that's still a prospect.
NORAH O'DONNELL: What's it say about President Obama?
MICHAEL DUFFY: Well, the administration said that if further actions by the Russians and Putin take place into Ukraine it would up the kind of sanctions it's been talking about and willing to actually put into place. What's unclear, though, is whether Putin really has to go further.
By taking over 10% to 15% of Ukraine, that's about what they control, the paramilitaries control, Putin is effectively paralyzing the nation because by controlling all of it he sort of shuts down the autonomy of the rest of it. And that's really Putin's goal. He may not have to go further, because he's at the moment sort of taken Kiev, the capital of Ukraine and reoriented it back toward the east, away from democracy, away from, you know, economic reform and away from the west.
NORAH O'DONNELL: But I'm fascinated by this relationship or lack of relationship between President Obama and President Putin. And Peter Baker of the New York Times reports today on the front page that the President's advisors have concluded that he-- the president will never have a constructive relationship with Mr. Putin. Peggy, what are the consequences of that?
PEGGY NOONAN: You've got to wonder how that works as a strategy, do you know what I mean, that strategy of, "Well, essentially we're not speaking, or we're giving up." I know or at least it's been in the press a lot that Putin and President Obama have spoken on the phone a number of times during this crisis.
I guess the president feels that's going nowhere, but that seems to me a side bar of the essential question. The essential question is, "What strategy is the United States going to adopt as Putinism is on the move?" And there it is. Obviously this is not just an immediate crisis. It is going to be a long running one.
It's run for a while now, and you can see where it's going in the future. I also wondered, connected to that report, if I may say, your reports on the ground, the extent to which the pro Russian separatists are in fact a Russian covert operation, I would think substantial. But I'm not on the ground there, I don't know.
MICHAEL DUFFY: And the administration certainly thinks they are basically a part of the Russian government. What's interesting this week, was as this agreement was being put together in Geneva, the president was already saying, "I'm not sure this is going follow through."
He was skeptical in the moment because it's not just an agreement with anybody. Unless it's an agreement with Putin himself, and he sticks to it, that's the only thing that anybody can be sure of. But nobody can be sure of what he's going to do. And the question is, Peter Baker mentioned containment.
This isn't containment in the sense that there's a global ideological fight over communism versus capitalism. It's a containment of the damage that Putin can do as he goes about following his schemes. But the question is, okay, you can try and contain him but what about the areas, and David knows this so well, Syria and Iran, where we have interests where we need to deal with Russia.
NORAH O'DONNELL:That's a great point.
DAVID IGNATIUS:Well, I think the White House feels that to the extent that Putin still wants to be seen as a figure of a global stage, he really has to continue to work with the U.S. in Syria, certainly on the chemical weapons disarmament and probably also in the Iran negotiations.
What I hear from the negotiators who've been meeting recently is that the Russians have continued to be part of those talks. Basically, Obama thinks that Putin, although he's looked strong, he's looked like a bully in this period, he's playing a weak hand. That he's now aroused all the Europeans to be much more skeptical of him.
He's reinvigorated NATO. There will be NATO military movements. I think the U.S. is going to be putting troops into the Baltic states, which is something we promised in the '90s we would not do, at least on short term rotations. So all those things are against Putin's interests and I think President Obama is saying, "Look, Vladimir, are you really that happy with what you've ended up with here? You know, you have a volatile used to be a client state, now it's a state in great turmoil."
NORAH O'DONNELL: But since it is Easter, let's turn from something dark to something light. We saw Pope Francis this morning in St. Peter's Square holding an Easter mass. It was a sunny day there, more than 100,000 packed in to hear his Easter mass. Peggy, what about this Pope Francis effect?
PEGGY NOONAN: Oh, I think it is considerable. I found very interesting, and what I thought was a remarkable interview with Cardinal Dolan this morning that you had, I found it very interesting that you pressed the cardinal on what real substantive changes has Francis made.
We all know he is embracing and he's irrepressible and he's warm, and that's a matter of style as you and the cardinal said. But I also think there's something more going on with Francis, and he showed us that in one of first interviews when he became pope and he referred to the world as a hospital-- a sealed hospital in the middle of a battle.
And he sort of said (VOICES) we are going to stop doing these narcissistic, doctrinal arguments about things that obsess the west. We are going to speak of Christ in the world and his healing embrace in the field hospital. And what he meant by the healing embrace was Christ's love. That's a kind of shift in emphasis that is more than style, I think.
MICHAEL DUFFY: And he puts his money where his mouth is. So we're used to seeing images of the pope in the so-called Pope Mobile. We're used to seeing these big gatherings. But when he goes down and sees a man whose face is covered in tumors and embraces him, that is acting in the field hospital. And it also, for Catholics, has (UNINTEL).
I mean, St. Francis himself, 13th century, scared of lepers, embraces a leper. Christ, that is the message of Christ. So here he's not just saying the right things. He's doing. It's religion you can use, and that's what's so appealing when you're talking to Catholics. And I'm Catholic.
NORAH O'DONNELL: But I mean, I asked him against gay marriage and civil unions. And of course the church is not going to change on those things. But there is reform needed in the Vatican, many reforms needed and it's not yet clear what those reforms will be.
MICHAEL DUFFY: He referred to the pope as sort of, you know, he talked about his simplicity. The word I think that really describes it is humility. The foot washing thing was important because, of course, you know, that's a reversal of power. That's the powerful ministering to the helpless.
NORAH O'DONNELL:Washing the feet.
MICHAEL DUFFY:(UNINTEL) the most interesting thing I think the pope's done in the last couple weeks actually took place in a Lenten mass a few weeks ago where he's about to go take confession from a number of people. And instead, doing that, he stops. Breaks away from what was clearly the plan, and goes to a normal priest at a normal confession booth right next to him and takes, in front of the throngs of St. Peter's, takes confession himself as a man.
PEGGY NOONAN: That was so touching.
MICHAEL DUFFY: And now, that is a message of mercy and forgiveness that he's not--
PEGGY NOONAN: His humility, yeah.
MICHAEL DUFFY:--trying to teach his priests, because he thinks they haven't been so good at that, but also the rest of us.
DAVID IGNATIUS:He has shown the world what leadership is, and he's shown the difference that a new personality imbued obviously with deep faith can do to reinvigorate an institution. And the fact that on this Easter Sunday the world is talking about Francis as somebody who's really changed the way we think about things, as expressed so well by Cardinal Dolan, in talking about him, that's a big change in the world.
NORAH O'DONNELL:You heard him make sort of an endorsement for Jeb Bush running for president, and it's a nice way for us to segue to Jeb Bush and 2016 politics because there's a lot to talk about on that front. John, what's the biggest impediment for Jeb Bush to getting in this race?
JOHN DICKERSON: Well, there's a competition for the biggest impediments, because he's got a few. I mean, let's focus just the narrow one. I mean, one is he hasn't run a race since 2002. Things have changed a lot in politics. He is not necessarily a happy warrior kind of fellow, and presidential campaigns right now would test the happiest warrior.
I mean, Hubert Humphrey would be in tears. The constant pinging and the abuses of the presidential campaign, and he would be attacked on both his family legacy, not just about Iraq but about his father's supporting of tax increases, his brother's lack of spending restraint. Conservatives don't like those two things.
That's why the Bush name is booed at a recent gathering of conservatives in New Hampshire. Common Core, the educational standards that the cardinal talked about education, well, this is an issue that a lot of conservatives in the grass roots don't like these national standards. So there are both issue reasons, family reasons, and also just personal reasons that he would have some hurdles. But there's also no frontrunner in the Republican party and he also has a name, and so he would have a shot.
MICHAEL DUFFY: You know, as someone, Peggy and I were talking about this before the show that people who know Jeb really well say that he has gone from being almost dismissive of this moment, of this round, this cycle, to being literally more, I don't want to say coy, but less dismissive. And that signals to them that it's a serious consideration.
There was also some news this week that could affect the 2016 presidential race but it came from Chelsea Clinton. Listen.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And then, of course, Hillary Clinton tweeted that, "This will be my most exciting title yet, Grandmother-to-be." Most exciting title, yet.
DAVID IGNATIUS: Well, what could she possibly be thinking about two years hence? Hillary Clinton is the presumptive favorite for the Democratic nomination in 2016 to an extent that I think is fascinating and should be worrying for Democrats. If Hillary Clinton announced tomorrow she doesn't want to run, or something else happened, who would there be?
And it's really striking. You look at the Republican field, there are a lot of smart, young, dynamic Republicans with something to say. You look at the Democratic side, it's very hard to find somebody who, if Hillary stumbled, would be there ready to move in. And that should worry Democrats.
PEGGY NOONAN: Yeah, I think. She freezes the field as long as nobody knows what she's going to do, and so nobody can come up, break through, be the guest on the show who kind of dazzles you in 20 minutes. I would also say about Jeb Bush, by the way, there is a certain sense that I have that maybe he himself doesn't know if he's going to move forward, but he knows the eyes of the press and the political establishment are on him. And he's going to use that focus to advance the things he wants to advance, immigration, Common Core, education, et cetera. So I think that may be going on a little bit there.
NORAH O'DONNELL: John, on Hillary we learned that her book is going to be out in June, the publisher of the book, Simon and Schuster which is a division of CBS News. Here's the cover right here. It's been released, and it's called Hard Choices.
JOHN DICKERSON: Yeah, I mean so it's better than Times I Blinked Under Pressure. So this is both, if you're going to run you want to get your story down on paper before you run. So this is both, if she's going to run, getting her story out, but it's also a kind of-- what does a president do? They make hard choices.
So it's kind of, like, "Here, I've already done it." And remember that famous ad, the 3:00 a.m. phone call that she ran against Barack Obama saying, "When the call comes, he has no experience. He won't be able to do it." Well, it actually at the time turns out she he doesn't think had a lot of 3:00 a.m. phone calls either. Now she has had some, and if she's running, that's what this book is about. I've been through, made hard, tough choices. I'm ready to go.
MICHAEL DUFFY: I think (UNINTEL). She puts out-- she (UNINTEL) name of her book is Hard Choices which may or may not have anything to do with her decision about whether to run for president. And two, she won the Chelsea primary. She's been campaigning for years, you know, to get to have a grandchild. They won that now. Bill was quite outspoken it, they both were. So I think we can go onto the next contest.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yes, well the publisher is describing this as an inside account of the crises, choices and challenges that Clinton faced during her years as Secretary of State. But, David, how important and how much do you think this book will signal about what she wants to do in the future? But, do we already know that she's running for president?
DAVID IGNATIUS: Well, okay, we're assuming that she has that fire in her that her husband certainly had, and still has. By publishing this book and my sense in talking to her is that she really is going to tell us about what it was like to be Secretary of State--
NORAH O'DONNELL: And Benghazi.
DAVID IGNATIUS: --she's putting her chips on that idea that she was a strong, effective leader of American foreign policy. She's not just a former First Lady. She's not just a former Senator. She made these hard choices. And the problem with that is that if you compare Secretary Clinton, who I think was a solid Secretary of State, with her successor, John Kerry, you see what a dynamic Secretary of State who didn't just make hard choices, went out there day after day after day trying to make diplomatic agreements.
PEGGY NOONAN: Put himself on the line.
DAVID IGNATIUS:And that comparison I think won't work in Secretary Clinton's favor. She can say, "I was a solid secretary," but compared to what Kerry's attempted she just wasn't really at that level."
PEGGY NOONAN: I think part of the purpose of this book, pinging off what David is saying, part of the purpose is to refute the idea out there that as Secretary of State, she was not a significant player in the creation of U.S. foreign policy. She was a person put on a plane and sent to Manila to be on Good Morning, Manila, do you know what I mean? It was different from Secretaries of State in the past, and I think she's going to try to say in this book, "Oh, no, no, no, I was very involved in the bubbling up and creation of U.S. foreign policy."
NORAH O'DONNELL: Well, in fact I think she's revealed there's an entire chapter on Iran, which I think she's going to make it a point of where they did make some progress--
DAVID IGNATIUS:Well, she got that story started. I think that's one of the most interesting parts of this book, my guess is, is she will tell us how the initial secret contacts with Iran began under her secretaryship with her mandate. And that's going to be news.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yeah, indeed. Go ahead.
JOHN DICKERSON:I was going to say, don't forget she's got some things to answer for, too. Former Secretary of Defense Gates has written a book that was in places quite critical of her, particularly about her political look at certain issues overseas. We'll see how she answers those, because those will be read side-by-side.
NORAH O'DONNELL:All right, we have more to talk about. So we'll be right back with more of our panel.
NORAH O'DONNELL: We're back with more of our panel. One of the major issues in this fall midterm election is Obamacare. And the president came to the White House briefing room last week to champion the fact that eight million Americans have signed up for health insurance. And he gave this advice to Democrats running for re-election.
NORAH O'DONNELL:John, not be defensive, but did he say Democrats should run on it?
JOHN DICKERSON: No, he didn't. And that's-- there's some interesting movement here. In February he spoke to the Democrats in the house who were having a retreat and he said, "In five to ten years we will look back on this law as a monumental achievement." And some people in the audience thought, "But our election's in November and not in five to ten years."
They want the president to give them air cover, and it should be noted that February, the numbers weren't as good as they look right now. And so what the President's doing is hoping for those Democrats running, is to give them air cover so that perhaps they can neutralize this issue.
So you won't see a lot of Democrats, let's look at those Senators running for re-election in Republican states. They're not rushing out to herald the eight million signups and so forth. But they hope that if the temperature is lowered on the Affordable Care Act, they can then talk about their issues. They can get some oxygen in the air to talk about their opponent and how bad their opponent is. And so the president is doing work in that way. The Democrats are happy to see him do it, and they're all very happy to have something good to say after many days of not having something so good to say.
NORAH O'DONNELL:But it's hurt the Democratic party in this year's elections no doubt, despite the encouraging numbers.
JOHN DICKERSON: Right. Because the polls are still very much against Obamacare, they're rising a bit, and because the launch was so disastrous. The eight million number that they announced this week were people who had signed up under the exchanges is more than even they had expected.
It's not exactly clear how many of them are new health insurance owners, or how many of them will stay with the program and actually pay the premiums. That'll be probably some weeks if not months before we know that. That's another reason why I think the Democrats probably aren't excited about running on this this year. But it's interesting that the president is talking about it after having not talked about it that much in the last campaign. And we'll see what the party, which has its own troubles in the fall, will do.
PEGGY NOONAN: I think one of the questions is, how many people still to this day, it's hard to get the number, simply lost their insurance in the past few months? And how many of those were, if you lost your insurance, you were really told you have to go on the exchange?
So the number, you know, to say eight million-- to suggest that eight million got brand new insurance and to give the impression that they had not been insured, I don't think that quite works. I also think Americans had the day by day familial, company oriented sense of how this thing is working, Obamacare. And I don't think they probably feel, "Wow, this was great. Let's do that one again."
So I think it remains as a blanket, suppressing for Democrats, in the coming election. I think it is now, and I suspect it will be in the future. I also think the decision the president just made on Keystone Pipeline will probably be difficult for Democrats running for the senate, especially the ones most vulnerable at the moment.
PEGGY NOONAN: Yeah, the decision to delay Keystone. I don't feel the president has done his party a lot of favors recently.
DAVID IGNATIUS: He's looking to his own legacy. I think what John cited, his comments to house members says it all. In five or ten years, this'll look great and I'll look great. The most important number I thought that came out last week was that the estimate of the costs of medical care have gone down by $100 billion over the next, you know, umpteen years.
And if Obama can succeed in that aspect of the Affordable Care Act, driving down the costs of this wildly expensive system, he will really have done something important. The problem is, that's gonna hurt for a lotta people. As costs are cut, your access to certain things that you counted on isn't going to be there. So it's sort of-- either way, it may be the thing to do, but in terms of politics, hard to see a benefit.
NORAH O'DONNELL: All right. Well, thanks to our political panel. Happy Easter. Happy Passover to everyone. Thank you all, and we'll be right back.
NORAH O'DONNELL: That's it for us today; Bob will be back next week. Thank you for watching FACE THE NATION.
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