Face the Nation Transcripts April 5, 2015: Moniz, Graham, Santorum

(CBS News) -- Below is a transcript of the April 5, 2015, edition of Face the Nation. Guests included Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, Sen. Lindsey Graham, former Sen. Rick Santorum, Sarah Warbelow, Margaret Brennan, David Sanger, Jeffrey Goldberg, David Ignatius and Ruth Marcus. Guest host: Norah O'Donnell.
***FULL TRANSCRIPT BELOW***
NORAH O'DONNELL: I'm Norah O'Donnell. Today on FACE THE NATION, after years of negotiating a deal emerges to prevent Iran from building a nuclear weapon.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: I am confident that we can show that this deal is good for the security of the United States, for our allies, and for the world.
NORAH O'DONNELL: That may be easier said than done, as critics both home and abroad have already raised significant concerns that it can't work. Can Iran be trusted to comply and only use its nuclear power for peace? We'll talk to one of the men who helped negotiate the deal--Energy secretary Ernest Moniz, one of the nation's top nuclear scientists.
And we'll hear from a key critic, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.
We will also talk to possible Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum about freedom in Indiana and elsewhere.
Plus, reaction from the Human Rights Campaign as to where the next fight will be. And we'll get an update on the final four and look forward to tomorrow's big game.
That, plus, our all-star panel because this is FACE THE NATION.
Good morning, and happy Easter and Passover. Bob is off today. We begin with the deal struck between the U.S. and Iran. At Easter Mass this morning, the Pope praised it as an opportunity for peace. But many questions still remain. Here is how the proposed deal works? Iran would reduce its total number of centrifuges from about nineteen thousand to just over five thousand enriching uranium. The deal increases the so-called breakout time. That is the time it could take Iran to build a bomb to at least one year. Iran must allow international inspectors into all of its nuclear sites and it will reduce stockpiles of nuclear fuel and modify a plutonium reactor which could have produced fuel for a bomb. Once inspectors have verified that progress, the U.S. and Europe will remove economic sanctions levied on Iran's economy. The President called it a historic deal.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: It is a good deal. A deal that meets our core objectives. This framework would cut off every pathway that Iran could take to develop a nuclear weapon.
NORAH O'DONNELL: But take a listen to Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
BENJAMIN NETANYAHU: Such a deal does not block Iran's path to the bomb. Such a deal paves Iran's path to the bomb.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Joining me now from New York is the secretary of Energy, Doctor Ernest Moniz. He is a nuclear physicist and was at the negotiating table with the Iranians alongside secretary of state John Kerry working to hammer out the specific details of this agreement. Secretary Moniz, thank you for joining us. I know it has been--
DR. ERNEST MONIZ (Energy Secretary): Thank you, Norah.
NORAH O'DONNELL: --a long couple of weeks, certainly doing this deal. I want to get your take on some of the news this morning. First, the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said just this morning that this is a bad deal. Listen.
BENJAMIN NETANYAHU: Not a single centrifuge is destroyed. Not a single nuclear facility is shut down, including the underground facilities that they built illicitly. Thousands of centrifuges will kept-- it will keep spinning, enriching uranium. That's a very bad deal. And after a few years, Iran will have unlimited capacity to build unlimited nuclear infrastructure.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Secretary, technically speaking, is what the prime minister said true?
DR. ERNEST MONIZ: Well, I-- we certainly have a very, very different view of the facts. First of all today, the breakout time is about two months. This will immediately get us over a year. It will get us there with almost instantaneous recognition of any attempt to evade the deal and it will give us plenty of time to respond diplomatically or otherwise. So we have blocked all these-- all of these pathways to a bomb and we should also emphasize this is not a ten-year deal, this is a long-term arrangement. There's no sunset. There will be a lot of phases starting with extremely stringent restrictions on-- on Iran's program. Hopefully, they will comply for a long time, build up confidence but we have ten-year restrictions, fifteen-year restrictions, twenty-five-year restrictions and we have forever restrictions. So this is a long-term program, not something that will kind of go away in a few years.
NORAH O'DONNELL: You just said hopefully they will comply. How will you know that they are complying?
DR. ERNEST MONIZ: We will know because this understanding leading to the agreement in three months will have built-in unprecedented access and transparency. We will be-- we will have eyes on principally through the International Atomic Energy Agency. We'll have eyes on the entire supply chain of uranium going back to the mines, the mills. We'll have continuous surveillance of centrifuge production. We'll have continuous surveillance of-- of the-- of this-- of centrifuge facilities themselves. We will have, by the way, for the plutonium pathway. We will have all of the spent fuel from the newly designed reactor which produces much less plutonium. All that fuel will go out of the country so there won't even be plutonium from that reactor-- in the country for the lifetime of the reactor. I repeat, the lifetime of the reactor. These are very, very strong. If they fail to meet any of these requirements, we are going to know through again our access and transparency and that will immediately lead not only to us but the international community, the P5+1, taking the appropriate actions.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm. One of the concerns, however, that while you will have this unprecedented access and transparency at these declared facilities, like Natanz, where there will still be some uranium enrichment. What about a covert effort? How will you know if something is being done covertly?
DR. ERNEST MONIZ: So, again, we-- we started from the beginning to address all the pathways to a bomb, uranium, plutonium, and covert. The covert relies upon these transparency issues. What I want to emphasize is that the Iran will from day one start complying with something called the additional protocol. What this means is they will have access not just to the declared facilities but also to undeclared sites, even sites that may not have nuclear materials. And there will be a process, a-- a time-limited process in which once we establish the suspicion and go through that process, Iran will have a very short time to grant that access or will be judged out of compliance.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Also in the news this morning, the New York Times reports that the factsheets that were put out by the two countries that there are some noteworthy differences which have raised the question of whether the two sides are entirely on the same page. The key difference is on the question of the pace and timing of the sanctions. Iran believes that those sanctions will be lifted immediately. The U.S.-- U.S. has said they would be phased out, which one is it?
DR. ERNEST MONIZ: Well, first of all, my understanding is that certainly in most dimensions, the-- the Iranian factsheet is actually consistent but, clearly, emphasizes different parts of the agreement and tends to omit some parts of the agreement. If I may first give an example from what you raised originally, you said that they will have just over five thousand centrifuges operating, they do not empathize that that's a drop from nineteen thousand. But even, more importantly, they did not mention, apparently, the additional constraints. Their stockpile of uranium will drop from ten tons to three hundred kilograms, that is a ninety-seven-percent reduction and that is a very, very major constraint on what-- on-- on what they can do in terms of any possible breakout. On sanctions, make it very, very clear, the sanctions relief really kicks in only when they have complied with the core nuclear restrictions. And that's what gets us to this two-month to one-year breakout time--
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.
DR. ERNEST MONIZ: --so that's when the sanctions relief will really kick in.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mister Secretary, Iran still remains a state sponsor of terror and will remain so. How would lifting of these sanctions which would essentially deliver billions of dollars in new money to Iran, how can you justify that when Iran is the chief destabilizer in the Middle East?
DR. ERNEST MONIZ: Well, first of all, there's no question that we will have many, many more issues with Iran. You've mentioned them, terrorism, Syria, Yemen, you name it. This agreement in no way lessens our-- the importance of our working against them, supporting our allies and friends in the region, very, very strongly. The thing is, however, would we prefer to be addressing those with Iran having a nuclear bomb or even the threat of having a nuclear bomb versus a situation in which we have, essentially, complete confidence that they are either complying or face the consequences of noncompliance.
NORAH O'DONNELL: All right. Secretary Moniz, good to have you here. Thank you very much.
DR. ERNEST MONIZ: Thank you, Norah.
NORAH O'DONNELL: We want the turn now to Republican Senator Lindsey Graham who is in Clemson, South Carolina, this morning. Senator, you heard the Energy secretary he said this is the best option to prevent Iran from building a nuclear weapon.
SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM (Armed Services Committee/R-South Carolina): Well, my view is probably the best deal that Barack Obama could get with Iranians because the Iranians don't fear nor do-- or do they respect him and our allies in the region don't trust the President. Here's the question for the world is there a better deal to be had? I think so. What I would suggest is if you can't get there with this deal is to keep the interim deal in place, allow new President in 2017--Democrat or Republican--take a crack at the Iranian nuclear program. Obama is a flawed negotiator. His foreign policy has failed on multiple fronts. Nobody in the region trusts him. The Iranians do not fear or respect him so he'll never be able to get the best deal. The best deal I think comes with a new President. Hillary Clinton would do better, I think everybody on our side, except maybe Rand Paul could do better. So that's one way of looking at this program keeping the interim deal in place, that's been fairly successful and have a new crack at it with a new President that doesn't have the baggage of Obama.
NORAH O'DONNELL: The President posed a question for his critics, like yourself, in the Rose Garden. Listen to what he said.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Do you really think that this verifiable deal, if fully implemented, backed by the world's major powers, is a worse option than the risk of another war in the Middle East?
NORAH O'DONNELL: Senator, your response? He said this is the best option out there. If they don't negotiate, if they don't get something, the only other option is a military one.
SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM: I don't buy that for one minute. It's the best deal he could get. But the question is is Barack Obama the best person to deal with the Iranians given his miserable foreign policy failure. Is it really-- does anybody really believe the Iranians will take the billions of dollars that we're about to give them and build hospitals and schools? How many centrifuges should a nation have whose military leadership called for the destruction of Israel during the negotiations. How many centrifuges should a nation have, who is still the largest sponsor of state terrorism. Does anybody in their right mind believe that Iran's behavior is going to change because you give them more money and more centrifuges to eventually make a bomb? And what will the Arabs do in response to this deal? This deal doesn't dismantle one centrifuge, it doesn't close one site. And I believe there is a better deal. I don't want a war but, at the end of the day, I don't want to give Iran the tools and the capability to continue to destroy the Mid-East and one day attack us by building bigger missiles. And until they say they will not destroy the state of Israel, until they stop their provocative behavior, I think we'd be nuts to give them more money and more capability.
NORAH O'DONNELL: But let me ask you about, I know one of the other options, one that you have proposed is tougher sanctions. But I want to ask you about the efficacy of sanctions as the New York Times has reported that Iran had about a few hundred working centrifuges in--
SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM: Right.
NORAH O'DONNELL: --in 2003, then thousands when Mister Obama took over, and now nineteen thousand--
SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM: Right.
NORAH O'DONNELL: --centrifuges. So, even though, we have had the toughest economic sanctions in place, Iran has still funded their nuclear program and advanced it to two-to-three-month breakout time. I've talked to people involved in negotiations say the whole point of sanctions was to bring the Iranians to the table that that has worked that this is part--
SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM: Yes.
NORAH O'DONNELL: --of the deal.
SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM: I-- I think it has worked. I think the Bush administration, they were miserable failure when it came to controlling Iran's nuclear ambition. Having been at the table was result of sanctions that the Congress passed hundred to nothing. If nothing else from this interview, please understand the following. I think Congress will require any deal negotiated with the Iranians to come to the Congress for our review before we lift congressional sanctions. I don't mind giving the administration the time between now and June to put this deal together. Because when you listen to the Iranians and Secretary Kerry is almost like you're talking to two-- two different deals. So I support the idea of giving them time to put the deal together but I insist that Congress review the deal, debate, and vote on it before it becomes final. Here is what I think we should do. Continue the sanctions under the interim agreement. That's worked pretty well for the world. It has controlled Iran's nuclear ambitions. They get some money, but do not do a final deal until you have the best opportunity to get the best result. Require Iran to change its behavior, stop destroying the Mid-East, stop bringing down governments one after another, stop chanting death to America, destroying-- death to Israel. Then when they change their behavior, allow a new President without the baggage of Barack Obama to see if they can negotiate a good deal. This deal, I believe, leads to an Arab breakout, they want a nuclear program like the Iranians, and I fear that Israel cannot live with this deal because it gives Iran too much capability and too much money to wreak havoc throughout the region.
NORAH O'DONNELL: All right. Senator Lindsey Graham, nice to have you here. Happy Easter. Thank you for joining us.
SENATOR LINDSEY GRAHAM: Thank you.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And we'll be right back.
(ANNOUNCEMENTS)
NORAH O'DONNELL: To put the Iran deal in perspective, we turn to some of the best in the business. Margaret Brennan is our CBS News State Department correspondent, who was covering the negotiations in Switzerland. David Ignatius is a columnist for the Washington Post. Jeffrey Goldberg is with the Atlantic. And David Sanger is with the New York Times and is also just back from Switzerland. Welcome to all of you. David Ignatius, let me start with you. You said this framework is better than many had feared, why?
DAVID IGNATIUS (Washington Post): I-- I thought the specific provisions, and you summarized those at the beginning of the show, just were-- were better in most dimensions than we had been led to expect. We-- we were expecting centrifuge number on the order of sixty-five hundred, six thousand. It's about five thousand. We were expecting a-- a cap on enriched material to come down from seven thousand kilograms to three hundred is a-- is a very substantial drop. The inspection procedures generally look stronger, more robust than we expected. There's some problems in this deal that really need to be noted. You pressed Secretary Moniz about the difference between the U.S. and Iranians statement summarizing what's in the deal. He did not give a clear answer to that and the reason is that right now there isn't a clear answer.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yeah.
DAVID IGNATIUS: There are two differences, two-- two versions of this. And we're going to find out between now and June which one is going to prevail finally as the agreement.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And, Margaret, I mean, how could this deal still fall apart? There's lots of issues to be worked out.
MARGARET BRENNAN (CBS News State Department Correspondent): Right. Well, in some ways, you needed two versions of this deal to go back and-- and sell to the political constituencies in Tehran and in Washington. So some of the murkiness, people will use to their own political advantage on both sides.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.
MARGARET BRENNAN: And you did see Zarif out there the top Iranian negotiator saying, wait a second, what the White House is saying isn't exactly accurate about how these sanctions will be lifted. And he really zeroed in on that. Senior U.S. officials say, listen, they knew this factsheet was coming out, they knew the way we would be describing it, and there's nothing factually inaccurate.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.
MARGARET BRENNAN: But so much murkiness around how sanctions will actually be lifted, implemented, triggered, tweaked, particularly, at the U.N. Security Council level that stuff still got to be hammered out. And that could be some of the stickiest bits in closing this deal. If it's June thirtieth, we're be on it.
NORAH O'DONNELL: David Sanger, how could this deal still fall apart?
DAVID SANGER (New York Times): Well, a few things, and Margaret got it, one of the them the sanctions, as we were covering it, you know, the sanctions were one of those issues that Secretary Kerry just could not come to agreement with Mister Zarif on. I think a second one is on inspections. That's a big issue. You pressed it with Secretary Moniz. They have set up a somewhat murky system for what happens if the United States says we think there's a covert plant, the Iranians say there isn't. And then there's going to be some way of adjudicating this, we're not sure what that is. We're not sure if the inspectors can get on military sites.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Mm. I mean that's the question. I mean the-- everyone says can-- how can we trust Iran? And the President in his statement said, we don't need to trust Iran because we'll have unprecedented access. Jeffrey.
JEFFREY GOLDBERG (The Atlantic): Yeah. But that's-- that's the-- that's one of the core issues which is, we're not-- (a) we're not getting access to the military sites Parchin, which is where they have been doing, apparently, some of the research on nuclear weapons development. But the-- the broader question is that we're-- we don't understand, yet, the way I think of it is, if this is known as a framework agreement, I would emphasize the word framework rather than agreement, because we don't know what's inside this. Because they don't know what's inside this. So we don't know if inspectors are going to be allowed to make surprise inspections, we don't know if all facilities are going to be open. If suddenly they discover another facility, are they going to be allowed to go into this? There are a million questions about this. And to answer the question to David, there are-- there are dozen ways this can fall apart.
NORAH O'DONNELL: One of the chief criticisms of this deal you heard it from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu again this morning is that it doesn't dismantle any facility. The infrastructure is still in place. So you allow Iran to be a threshold state. I mean is that a legitimate criticism.
DAVID SANGER: There is certainly something to it. And I would say that one of the hardest concessions that the administration had to go make was allowing that there would still be a thousand centrifuges in this deep underground site at Fordow that can only be reached by one bunker buster bomb the U.S. has. The Israelis have no way into to it. That was very tough because when President Obama first revealed the existence of this site in 2009, he said it had to be dismantled, everything had to come out. Secretary Moniz would argue, look, we're letting them have the face-saving element of keeping this open. But there will be no fissile material, nothing to make a bomb with. And so his judgment as a nuclear scientist is, much better to let them have the face-saving part but not have the material. The optics of it are pretty bad, they allow the prime minister to say just what he said.
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: But Fordow is actually, doesn't seem to me to be the most important issue in that-- in that basket of issues, the more important issue is the R&D issue, the research and development. I mean what your-- what this agreement will allow the Iranians to do is maintain a vast infrastructure to do research and development in-- in enrichment and in other aspects of the nuclear program. So-- so everything remains in place. There will be inspectors apparently watching most of these things, so we'll know in most cases if something is going awry. But-- but the infrastructure remains.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm. What about that criticism that this administration was so eager to get a deal done that they made a great deal of concessions?
MARGARET BRENNAN: Well, I think one of these principles here, this idea that you're not destroying but rather you're limiting Iran's program is going to be a concession in some way that is going to be the hardest for the administration to sell on the Hill. It is very hard to explain as Secretary Moniz tried to that, you know, we can go all along the production line and limit mines and mills and how you take uranium underground and what you do with it, adding up that formula to explain that we've got this under control is really hard. And allowing Iranians to go home and say they're not dismantling anything when it comes to their infrastructure is, essentially, what the premise of this whole thing is. Diplomacy is win-win. You can't have one victor truly. You can say we can limit this, we can do that. But that's what's going to be so hard to politically to sell.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Not only to sell to Congress but to sell to the Gulf States.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Right.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And I thought, David Ignatius, very interesting that he President mentioned that he had called the king of Saudi Arabia before he called Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu. He has invited all of the Gulf States to Camp David; something that will likely happen in May. What's their chief concern?
DAVID IGNATIUS: The biggest danger under this deal is that the Gulf States will say, okay, this is the deal you made with Iran, we want the same terms. In other words, we will enter into a period of nuclear proliferation in which Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE, Turkey, all essentially, say we want to be threshold nuclear states, too, just like Iran. And that's is a world with so much enriched uranium, so many ways that material could get to a nuclear device or bomb, that's a much more dangerous world. To me the most interesting thing that Lindsey Graham said was, you know, this is best deal President Obama could have negotiated. That's a weird sort of backhand compliment I guess.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yeah.
DAVID IGNATIUS: But he-- he said, I'm prepared to give him the necessary three months to get this deal done if Congress will, in fact, back off and let them try to finish this final agreement, that's significant because there have been fears in the administration that Congress would jump in right away. So I thought that was an important statement by Graham.
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: David has hit on a key point which is that-- is that President Obama has said repeatedly, that the most important goal is to prevent a nuclear arms race in the world's most volatile region. So what's coming up this summit with the Arab States is-- is crucially important, if the Saudis go, then it's a different world.
NORAH O'DONNELL: All right. We'll talk more about that because I know that many of you are coming back. But for now we'll be right back.
(ANNOUNCEMENTS)
NORAH O'DONNELL: There's a lot more FACE THE NATION ahead, including an interview with possible 2016 presidential candidate Rick Santorum and a discussion on religious freedom in America.
(ANNOUNCEMENTS)
NORAH O'DONNELL: Welcome back to FACE THE NATION. I'm Norah O'Donnell. Bob is off. Earlier I sat down with former Republican senator and 2012 presidential candidate Rick Santorum.
Senator, good to have you here.
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM (R-Pennsylvania): Thank you, Norah.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Let's talk about the debate that's been going on in Indiana and Arkansas. First Indiana, was it right for Governor Pence to change the language in the bill?
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM: I was hoping he wouldn't. I think that the language they had is-- is better language. This is acceptable language. I voted for this language, so I certainly can't say that it's-- it's a bad bill. It's a good bill. But it doesn't do a lot of the things. It doesn't really open the debate up on-- on some of the more current issues. I think that the current language that the-- that the federal law is, now Indiana is, has been held pretty much to have a pretty limited view of what religious liberty-- religious freedom is in-- in the workplace. And I think we need to look at as religious liberty as now being pushed harder to provide more religious protections. And that-- and that bill doesn't do that.
NORAH O'DONNELL: What now do you think with this new language changes?
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM: I-- I think what we need to look at is, we-- we aren't for discrimination for-- against any person. I mean I think that's-- no business should discriminate against but-- because of who you are. But it should have the ability to say, we're not going to participate in certain activities that we disagree with from a religious point of view. I don't think, frankly, either bill does that, but the second one, the one that Governor Pence backed away from, moves toward that.
NORAH O'DONNELL: In fact, here's what the language says. It makes clear that the law does not allow businesses to refuse services, facilities, use of public accommodations, goods, employment, or housing to any member or members of the general public based on race, color, religion, ancestry, age, national origin, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or United States military service. With this language if you were a wedding planner--
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM: Mm-Hm.
NORAH O'DONNELL: --and you did not want to be involved in planning a same-sex marriage, this language would not allow you to opt out.
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM: I'm not a legal scholar, but I can tell you the way that the previous laws have been ruled, they-- they have not provided any type of legal protection for that and I think that's--
NORAH O'DONNELL: And you think that wedding planners who don't want to plan a same-sex marriage should be allowed to--
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM: Again it's a matter-- it's a matter of accommodation. Tolerance is a two-way street. If-- if you are a-- if you are a-- a print shop and you-- you are a-- a gay man, should you be forced to print "God Hates Fags" for the Westboro Baptist Church because they hold those signs up? Should you be forced to do-- should the government and this is really the case here. Should the government force you to do that? And that's what these cases are all about. This is about the government coming and say, no, we're going to make you do this. And this is where I think we just need some space to say, let's have some tolerance, have it be a two-way street.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Do you think that what's behind many of these religious freedom laws is that gay marriage is now legal in more than thirty states and so this is really about trying to protect business owners who don't want to be involved in same-sex weddings?
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM: I think you've seen-- obviously attitudes in this country change. And when those attitudes change, we run into a whole bunch of new issues. And so the question is how do we deal with that in respecting people on both sides of the issues? And I think that's where you have to differentiate between discrimination against the person because of who they are and discrimination-- unwillingness to participate in actions because they're-- they're-- they're inconsistent with your-- with your religious beliefs.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Are you going to run for President?
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM: No announcements here today. You know, I'm going through the process that I think seventeen or eighteen other folks are going through right now, which is trying to determine whether your message is a good message, and after delivering a message on making sure that the-- we have a message that unifies the country. One of the-- one of the things that really bothers me the most about what we see going on in the-- the Capitol building behind you is the divisiveness that-- that we see in Washington, DC. And I think people are looking for someone to bring us together. And I-- I put a book out last year called Blue Collar Conservatives; and it's the whole idea that we have to start bringing those who are being left behind by this economy. We have to give them an opportunity to be able to-- to reach that American dream again. And I think Republicans, frankly, have been very weak on that. And-- and there's a real opportunity for-- for a candidate to come forward with a plan that's going to provide upward mobility for everybody and-- and unite the country in-- in a way that we haven't seen in a long time.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Do you think Mitt Romney lost because religious conservatives stayed home?
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM: I think there's a lottery. I wouldn't point to that specifically although there's certainly evidence that that happened. I think there's also evidence that he didn't do a very good job reaching out to the very voters that I just talked about. I think there's a lot of folks who are very disenchanted with both political parties because neither party is really talking about them and really saying how-- what's the way forward for the seventy percent of Americans who don't have a college degree but, you know, want economic opportunity like everybody else and-- and nobody's talking about that. Not have--
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yet again you have the Republican Party focused on a-- on a social conservative issue with the-- what was going on in Indiana and Arkansas.
FORMER SENATOR RICK SANTORUM: Well, I mean there's room for lots of debates on lots of issues. And-- and, you know, we're going to have-- hopefully, have a very great conversation about national security in this election and-- and the Iranian deal, for example. So there's-- there's lots of room for lots of issues to be discussed. I've made the central focus of-- of-- of what I've been out talking about, the fact that ninety percent of American workers don't own their own business. They're actually working for businesses and that Republicans better have a message that-- that appeals to their place in the world today and their opportunity to rise in society. And I'm really excited that some Republicans now, not many, but some are beginning to follow along with what I've-- what I've been talking about for the past several years and begin to talk about those issues. That's an encouraging sign for me.
NORAH O'DONNELL: For more on religious freedom and laws in this country and the backlash that forced changes in the Arkansas and Indiana laws, we are joined now by Sarah Warbelow, the legal director for the Human Rights Campaign, the country's largest gay and lesbian civil rights organization. Sarah, good to have you here. You just heard from Senator Santorum who said this law would have protected a gay business owner from having to do work on something that he finds offensive or discriminatory. Would that have been an important protection to have?
SARAH WARBELOW (Human Rights Campaign): On the contrary, the legislation would have done no such thing. It explicitly allowed individuals to use their religious beliefs to underline other types of laws that provide protections. Not only against gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people but against other religious minorities and in some instances against African-Americans and Asian-Americans as well.
NORAH O'DONNELL: So we saw Indiana change its law Arkansas as well. Where is the next fight?
SARAH WARBELOW: Well, there are over a hundred bills that have been introduced in the state legislatures this year attempting to target the LGBT community. In particular, we're going to be turning our vision to states like Texas and South Carolina that have bills similar to what we saw in Indiana already in the works.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm. I understand there is going to be some tech titans that are coming out on Monday in order to urge laws that prevent this type of discrimination against gay and lesbians, including Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg of Facebook along with Eric Schmidt and Larry Page of Google. Why do you think this is all happening now?
SARAH WARBELOW: The tech industry is joining many other important American voices in the business community from Apple to Walmart to Angie's List, who are really looking at their employees' whole lives. These companies already offer nondiscrimination protections in employment for their employees. But they want to make sure that outside of the workforce their employees are not going to be turned away when they go to a restaurant, when they go grocery shopping, when they go to purchase a home or rent an apartment. Nondiscrimination protections are critical to every area of their employee's lives.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And in how many states do those laws currently not exist?
SARAH WARBELOW: So currently only twenty-one states and the District of Columbia have laws that protect on the basis of sexual orientation and seventeen of those on the basis of gender identity. So there's a lot of work to be done.
NORAH O'DONNELL: All right. Sarah Warbelow, good to have you here. Thank you very much.
SARAH WARBELOW: Thank you so much for having me.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And we'll be right back.
(ANNOUNCEMENTS)
NORAH O'DONNELL: For more on Iran and the other news this week, we turn to our panel. Again, we're joined by Margaret Brennan our State Department correspondent; David Ignatius a columnist for the Washington Post. We welcome Ruth Marcus also a Post columnist; and Jeffrey Goldberg a national correspondent for The Atlantic. Welcome all. Let's turn back the issue of Iran, Jeffrey. I mean is it possible that the rift with the-- between U.S. and Israel is even larger now?
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: Well, this is the-- there's an interesting moment coming up, because I think the President right after this framework agreement was announced, did a couple of things. He immediately reached out to the Gulf States, the Arabs. And he immediately reached out to Benjamin Netanyahu. Now, remember, it's not his favorite thing to do during the day is make long involved phone calls to Benjamin Netanyahu, but he did it and they're going to be talking in the coming days and weeks about strengthening the defense relationship between Israel and the United States. So I think the White House is cognizant of the fact that they have to work with their Middle East allies to make them feel somewhat allayed about this. And also it's-- it's good politics for the White House because if you-- if you give the Arabs something, if you give the Israelis something, maybe then their-- their-- their objections to this deal will be somewhat more muted.
NORAH O'DONNELL: What do we have to give them?
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: We can-- we can do various things to ensure, for Israel. Obviously, it's making sure that their qualitative military edge is maintained, various other sort of security guarantees and close cooperation. The Israelis feel or the Israeli government at least feels that the U.S. is drifting away from it or the Obama administration is drifting away. So now is the time to sort of stitch back that together.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Let's take a look at this recent tweet from the Israeli prime minister. It's a map of the region with arrows from Iran leading to Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Egypt, and, Yemen, the title being Iran's Aggression During the Nuclear Negotiations. I mean that's one of the criticisms, Margaret, is this didn't deal anything with Iran's funding a lot of these proxy groups in these and being a chief destabilizer.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Right. And Secretary Moniz was unable to answer your question about that of, you know this windfall for Iran financially, how do you control where the money goes, which is a big question that people can't quite answer. But what the administration would say is well, you know, we are keeping other sanctions on Iran as it relates to human rights abuses, etcetera. And that at the U.N. some of the biggest embargos like on arms will still be maintained. So we have some lever of control there. But you know it's interesting I interviewed Secretary Kerry right after he unveiled this deal or announcement, framework for an announcement-- for a deal, possibly, some would say and-- and he responded in a way that just suggested the Israeli criticism was Pavlovian, you know it is-- they're going to say this regardless.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yes.
MARGARET BRENNAN: And it's not based on fact. And I think as the administration makes its argument to Congress, they're going to rely more and more on the science of it. I think we'll be seeing more and more of Secretary Moniz as sort of the credibility for the administration in arguing the science of this.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yes.
MARGARET BRENNAN: And lean more and more on that because they-- they are dismissing the rhetoric coming from Israel as rhetoric.
NORAH O'DONNELL: I know certainly the administration is trying to make that case, let's look at the science of this.
I also want to just step back for a moment about this being really a moment for President Obama who-- who has spent, reportedly, more time on Iran than almost any other issue in terms of-- of foreign policy. Does he have any foreign policy legacy without getting something on Iran?
DAVID IGNATIUS: This is without question the biggest thing he has tried to do. He said it from his inaugural address in January 2009. He specifically spoke, reached out to Iran, said he's-- he's sought an engagement based on mutual respect and mutual fist.
NORAH O'DONNELL: They unclenched their fist. Yeah.
DAVID IGNATIUS: And-- and now six years later here we are with this tentative deal, a deal that has struck many observers in the U.S. is a little better than expected. The reaction, Israel is a little less angry than expected. Many Iranians are jubilant at the end of their isolation. So he can say the biggest thing I tried to do in foreign policy, you know, I-- I am succeeding at. And I think that's important politically. It's important for him in terms of his-- his legacy. Hillary Clinton was a key part of making this secret diplomacy work in the beginning. So she's-- she's part of it, too. And I think it's going to be tough for the Republicans to run hard against this if the elements that are now shaky in the deal can be firmed up in a way that looks like they constrain Iran more.
NORAH O'DONNELL: I think I took a look at just about every potential Republican presidential candidate for 2016, and all of them were very critical of this deal.
RUTH MARCUS (Washington Post): Well, I think that the real legacy question is not going to be answered during the 2016 campaign. And I think David said the critical word which is "if," if they can reach this agreement by June, if Iran abides by the deal assuming that the deal goes through. And if it turns out that it's not unleashing a destabilizing force in the region by either giving Iran more money or impelling the arms race with other neighbors, then it could affect President Obama's long-term foreign policy legacy, because right now it looks very, very messy. If he has solved this Iran problem or at least improved the Iran problem, he could then-- we could then look back on him as having opened real relationships with two important countries that we did not have relationships with at the start, one being Cuba, the second being Iran. But in the short term in 2016, it is going to be a partisan battle along the lines that Senator Graham was suggesting.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm. Jeffrey, you talked about the President and his relationship with these Gulf states. I mean he's trying to convene, quite frankly, which would be not a summit, but I mean this incredible gathering--
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: Yeah.
NORAH O'DONNELL: --of leaders from the Saudi Arabia, from Bahrain, Kuwait, the UAE. Give me if I'm leaving off one of them off the top of my head, but what-- is it an effort by the President to show unity? Is it-- does he really have some convincing to do? Does he have to sell some of them, some new advanced weaponry as has been suggested to me?
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: Well, they-- they get a lot of pretty advanced weaponry already. So I don't know how much of a sale it is. But no, it's-- it's-- it's a reassurance meeting. It's a-- it's a meeting to-- to convince people that he's not actually shifting American focus to Iran, trying to make Iran the principle stabilizer of the Middle East, but that we're still friends with the Arabs. And a very important part of this, he is trying to-- he's trying to convince these Arab states, look, you don't have to go down the nuclear path yourselves because we've got your back. Again, it's-- it's all about trying to convince the Saudis not to go to their friends in Pakistan and buy some nuclear weapons, to put it bluntly. Because then you have what-- what-- what President Obama has described as a-- as a nightmare. So now is the time to-- to reassure all of America's allies in the Middle East, and that's what he is doing in a rather dramatic way at Camp David.
MARGARET BRENNAN: And I think it's in some ways tacit recognition that something the administration has tried to ignore or deny which is they say this nuclear deal with Iran is not connected in any way to anything else in the Middle East.
RUTH MARCUS: Yeah.
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: Right.
MARGARET BRENNAN: As a portfolio it's totally siloed, and, yet, it is inextricably linked to every country and every conflict in the Middle East.
RUTH MARCUS: Yeah.
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: Right.
MARGARET BRENNAN: And so those conversations need to be had. But I think one interesting development in the past few weeks is also to see what Saudi Arabia has chosen to do in Yemen.
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: Mm-Hm.
MARGARET BRENNAN: And what many of the other Arab countries have chosen to go along with them on, which is essentially some kind of Arab response force, right? There's no shortage of weapons, but there's been a shortage of choices of to use weapons in a way to defend them at least.
JEFFREY GOLDBERG: One of the things that the Arab states are going to-- one of the things that the Arab states are going to be asking for is a little bit more assertiveness on the part of the United States against Iran, in Syria, in Yemen, in Lebanon.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Mm-Hm. Mm-Hm.
RUTH MARCUS: There's one other ball I think we need to be keeping our eye on because it's not just a selling job that the President needs to do with Arab states and with Israel, it's a selling job with Congress. So after this Easter recess, Congress is going to come back, it is going-- the Senate has been asserting its role the admiration would well prefer it to say, oh, well, you're the commander-in-chief, you're the chief force in foreign policy, we'll just sit back and whatever you want us to do with the sanctions, fine, we'll go along. They-- the administration is understanding that's not the way it's going to work. Congress is going to assert its role. It has started to do and it knows it needs to do, is serious selling job with Congress because this Corker bill is going to come up that is going to require a congressional role in undoing the congressional end of the sanctions, and that's an important piece to watch, including the fact that Senator Schumer, the soon-to-be, not that soon, but waiting Senate Minority Leader in waiting has signed on to this bill that would assert the congressional role. So keep an eye on that.
NORAH O'DONNELL: You know while Iran was certainly one of the big headlines this week, the other big headline was this debate over the religious freedom law in Indiana and Arkansas. Ruth, how would you sort of characterize what happened this week? I mean we had two Republican governors who, essentially, backed down and revised laws in the face of this very strong opposition and criticism.
RUTH MARCUS: It was a remarkable week. And I think I would say what we're seeing here with these religious freedom laws and the various states, and Sarah and others have lot of work on their hands ahead. But it's really the last gasp of the culture wars. No longer are we going to be seeing Republican candidates-- Republican strategists affirmatively putting anti-gay measures on the ballot in order to turn out their votes at the expense of Democrats, rather both on the business end because corporations are with the program of anti-discrimination and on the demographic end because young voters, Republican and Democrats, also will not tolerate this. The Repub-- those who want to wage the cultural wars are on the losing end to the battle.
NORAH O'DONNELL: I mean, David, this is going to be-- we're going to have a Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage. This debate is not over.
DAVID IGNATIUS: No, the Supreme Court's final judgment whether it is constitutionally protected for gays to marry will significantly change--change the debate. I thought what was poignant this week was that you saw the Republican Party and the Republican presidential candidates caught between where their base is feeling passionately we should not be forced to do things that we religiously don't believe in and as a popular cause, you heard Rick Santorum say, really, he'd like to see even more attention to that. Coming up against the reality that the Republican Party today, like the country, increasingly accepts gay marriage.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Mm-Hm.
DAVID IGNATIUS: Majorities of white mainstream-- Protestants of white Catholics, of Hispanic Catholics, majorities of all of those support-- support gay marriage. So the-- the party is-- is stuck between its base and where the country is. We saw that this week, we saw Jeb Bush rush to be, you know, right there with Mike Pence and then all of a sudden Jeb Bush is left out there all alone wondering, gee, maybe-- maybe I shouldn't have done that quite so quickly.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yeah.
RUTH MARCUS: I want to quickly disagree with one thing that my smart colleague David said because I actually think that the Supreme Court decision bizarrely, who would have thought we wouldn't be on tenterhooks about it, I think we know which way the Supreme Court is going. I don't think it's going to change in terms of the debate because the country is already where the majority of it is, where the Supreme Court I think is going to turn out, which is in favor of same sex marriage. And so the next frontier, and the platen of lining of this debate is to put in place the anti-discrimination laws that most people think are already there to protect gay and lesbian marriages.
DAVID IGNATIUS: But once you have that decision--
NORAH O'DONNELL: Yeah.
DAVID IGNATIUS: --then you just say to Mike Pence, this is unconstitutional.
NORAH O'DONNELL: Right.
DAVID IGNATIUS: And you can't quite say that today.
NORAH O'DONNELL: The debate will continue. All right, thank you all.
Coming up next, a look at the Final Four. Wasn't that fun last night?
RUTH MARCUS: It was great. Go Wisconsin.
NORAH O'DONNELL: A college basketball top prize.
(ANNOUNCEMENTS)
NORAH O'DONNELL: Finally today, March Madness comes to an end tomorrow night on CBS in Indianapolis with the men's national college basketball Championship game featuring the Duke Blue Devils and the Badgers of Wisconsin. For more on the match up, we are joined by CBS Sports sideline reporter Tracy Wolfson. Tracy, good to see you. Wow. Undefeated no more. How did Wisconsin beat Kentucky?
TRACY WOLFSON (CBS Sports): Unbelievable, right? I mean we kind of knew it would be such a close game, and actually Bo Ryan before the game told his team, jab, jab, jab. You know he compared it to a prize fight. That's kind of what it was. It was back and forth. It was one of those epic games we're going to look back on in a few years from now and just say, wow. I think how Wisconsin did it was they just imposed their will. And, you know, they are playing with a chip on their shoulder. They lost to Kentucky last year in the Final Four and they want to get Bo Ryan that first championship and they want Sam Dekker and Frank Kaminsky before they leave the Badgers. They want to get that championship.
NORAH O'DONNELL: And now Wisconsin faces Duke on Monday night. My co-host Gayle King and Charlie Rose are so excited that Duke is going to be in the championship. We're going to see AP's player of the year, Frank Kaminsky against the runner-up for that ward, Duke's star freshman Jahlil Okafor, what a match-up?
TRACY WOLFSON: Really an unbelievable match-up. They have faced each other earlier in the season and Duke won that one. But you can look back to December and to be honest none of that matters. Both of these teams are different. They have matured. They have changed. That is going to be the match up. Any time you talk about Duke, you talk about Jahlil Okafor. Anytime you talked about Wisconsin, you talk about Frank Kaminsky. So to watch those two go at it underneath the basket it's going to be one for the ages again.
NORAH O'DONNELL: We will all be watching on CBS. CBS Sports reporter Tracy Wolfson, great to have you. We'll be right back.
(ANNOUNCEMENTS)
NORAH O'DONNELL: That's it for us today. Bob will be back next week. Wish you all a happy Easter and Passover. I'll see you tomorrow on CBS THIS MORNING. Thank you for watching FACE THE NATION.
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