From NBC's Chuck Todd
If you are wondering about how frustrated the White House is about the coverage of the criticism some Republicans are leveling against the president, then check this out. The press office sent around the following list of supportive quotes overheard on the Sunday Shows. It was a, well, very campaigny thing to do, reminiscent of the post-debate "what they're saying" emails campaign reporters would regularly get from all of the presidential campaigns.
Video: A group of demonstrators gathered outside the White House in order to have their voices heard regarding the recent Iranian presidential elections.
In the release, the White House shared quotes from George Will, Richard Lugar, Sam Nunn, Bob Casey, Dianne Feinstein, Evan Bayh and Chris Dodd. Of course, it shouldn't be a surprise the White House is finding supportive quotes from Democrats, but note they led with Will and Lugar, to underscore their belief that the GOP is actually more divided on this issue than the Democrats.
From the release, the excerpts from the Republicans the White House is touting:
George Will on ABC
GEORGE WILL, ABC NEWS: It will never be the same there. And the legitimacy of the regime, such as it was, is much diminished.
Whether or not that's a good thing is another matter. The president is being roundly criticized for insufficient rhetorical support for what's going on over there. It seems to me foolish criticism. The people on the streets know full well what the American attitude toward that regime is, and they don't need that reinforced.
Furthermore, there's an American memory of encouraging things like the Hungarian revolution in 1956, with rhetoric about rolling back communism. We had balloons flown in and dropped medals with the Statue of Liberty on it and leaflets. Came to crunch, there was nothing we could do about it.
Senator Lugar on CNN
KING: If President Ahmadinejad or the supreme leader, Mr. Khamenei, came back now and said, we want to sit down with the United States at a high level, Secretary Clinton perhaps to the foreign minister, or president to president, should the United States say yes or would you be rewarding the unjust, to use the president's word, behavior he sees on the streets of Iran right now?
LUGAR: We would sit down because our objective is to eliminate the nuclear program that is in Iran. This is...
KING: Even though -- even though they are shooting people in the streets and beating people in the streets and arresting political opponents, if they called tomorrow, you would sit down with them?
LUGAR: Yes, it's totally improbable. And the reason is that this regime now is under fire. This is not a stable regime in which two people suddenly sit down with the United States. They may not be able to impose their will. This is what -- this is all about in the streets. But in direct answer to your question, of course, we really have to get into the nuclear weapons. We have to get in the terrorism of Iran in other areas in the Middle East. Now we have a new opportunity in which we might very well say we want communication with Iran.
We want openness of the press. We don't want to have use Tweeter (ph). We want to have to press on the ground. But in order to have any kind of relationship, we need to be able to talk to people, hear from people, argue with people.
This is not imposing our will, but it's fundamental to our democracy and to the development of democracy and or better governments in Iran at this point.