Who better than an ex-Hillary Clinton adviser, someone who worked on the Iran nuclear deal, to weigh in on the escalating conflict with North Korea? That’s who Charlie Rose turned to on Wednesday’s CBS This Morning. The co-hosts did not press Jake Sullivan on problems or scandals involving the Obama administration’s Iran negotiations.
Instead, Sullivan was allowed to get away with this smear: “ It just doesn't help when our allies and the countries in the region can’t tell whether it's Donald Trump or Kim Jong-un who's the crazier one.” The co-hosts had no follow-up or question to this attack. Instead, they moved on to other topics.
Sullivan was the national security adviser to Vice President Joe Biden and involved in the secret negotiations on the Iranian nuclear deal. Rose and the other journalists could have brought up a blockbuster Politico report from April that exposed the buried secrets of Obama’s Iran deal giveaway.
Politico senior investigative reporter Josh Meyer authored a more than 7300-word bombshell showing that Obama secretly released 21 Iranian prisoners (not the seven originally claimed), men who were deeply involved in Iran’s missile and nuclear program. This never came up in the interview.
Instead, Rose seemed far more concerned on, you guessed it, why Hillary Clinton lost:
If Hillary Clinton had been elected president, everybody assumes you would have had one of the principal roles around her. National Security adviser or something like that. We also ask this question and I'm sure she asks it and I’m sure you ask it. Why did she lose?
After Sullivan cited a growing populist movement as one cause, a wounded Rose followed-up:
Why didn't you see that and why didn't she see that? I mean, that’s the role of people who were principal advisers stories to a president. There were stories she was unhappy about that and so was her husband, the direction of the campaign speaking to those issues.
If only he’d shown similar interest in the Iranian nuclear deal. Guest co-host Margaret Brennan instead wondered if Sullivan would one day run for office. These are not exactly examples of journalists speaking truth to power.
[CBS’s biased segment was brought to you by Buick, Clear Choice Dental Centers and Visa.]
A partial transcript is below:
CBS This Morning
CHARLIE ROSE: [Former Hillary Clinton/State Department adviser Jake Sullivan] You say North Korea is a land of lousy options. Where are we going? What is going to happen and does the language of the President help or hinder?
JAKE SULLIVAN: Well, what we need right now is steady resolve, calm, and absolutely strong and consistent leadership and the problem with what the President said is it puts all the attention on the United States and what the United States is thinking. When right now the attention should be on north Korea and producing pressure to produce a diplomatic outcome. It just doesn't help when our allies and the countries in the region can’t tell whether it's Donald Trump or Kim Jong-un who's the crazier one.
ROSE: You have also said the likelihood of war is not North Korea but Iran.
MARGARET BRENNAN: And we’re potentially looking at an October deadline for some sort of diplomatic crisis if as the President has said in interviews he chooses not to re-certify the nuclear deal that you are apart of. What actually happens if he says Iran's not abiding by the agreement?
ROSE: And General Mattis has said about the Iran nuclear deal that he supports it even though he finds some flaws in it. And even President Obama probably finds some flaws in it, I assume.
BRENNAN: But at the end of the Obama administration, you and I both know people in that administration who would admit privately now that they missed opportunities with North Korea and they allows things to escalate? Why wasn’t there a diplomatic option at the time and what’s different now?
ROSE: If Hillary Clinton had been elected president, everybody assumes you would have had one of the principal roles around her. National Security adviser or something like that. We also ask this question and I'm sure she asks it and I’m sure you ask it. Why did she lose?
JAKE SULLIVAN: That's a very difficult question that to this day keeps me up at night. I don't think there is any one reason. I think there's a combination of factors. Any one of which that had been changed on the day of, she would have won. Frankly if the election had been held one week earlier or later she might have won. There was a combination of outside factors, like Comey and Russia. And then there was the fact that, honestly, this country wanted dramatic change and there was a populist movement —
ROSE: Why didn't you see that and why didn't she see that? I mean, that’s the role of people who were principal advisers stories to a president. There were stories she was unhappy about that and so was her husband, the direction of the campaign speaking to those issues.
BRENNAN: Are you going to run, Jake?
BRENNAN: Run for office. You’ve pondered it before.
SULLIVAN: It’s possible that someday I’ll run for office.