This is a rush transcript from "Sunday Morning Futures," March 1, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
MARIA BARTIROMO, HOST: Good morning. Congress kicks the can.
Hi, everyone. I'm Maria Bartiromo. Welcome to "Sunday Morning Futures."
Lawmakers now have until Friday to do what they could do not do for months, and that is reach a long-term agreement on funding the Department of Homeland Security. Can they get it together? Senator Richard Shelby is on deck.
Nabbing potential "Jihadi Johns" in the U.S. -- we will talk with a former CIA operative this morning. Now, a U.S. congressman on a task force to root out homegrown terror inside of our borders.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu now on his way to the U.S. He will speak with Congress this upcoming week ahead of what might be a showdown between the White House and Capitol Hill over new Iran sanctions. Our panel on that.
Garry Kasparov this morning on the murder of a major Putin opposition leader.
That and a lot more, as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."
Funding for the Department of Homeland Security has been extended but only for a week. Democrats and Republicans unable to comprise on a larger bill, including language stopping the president's executive action on immigration.
The president's signature started the stopwatch on the next funding deadline, this upcoming Friday. Richard Shelby is a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and he is chairman of the Senate Banking committee.
Senator, it's good to have you on the program. Thanks so much for joining us.
SEN. RICHARD SHELBY, R-ALA.: Good morning, Maria.
BARTIROMO: How will you get done what you have not been able to get done for months by this Friday?
SHELBY: Well, that's the central question. We hope to get it done. What we're trying to do is get a vote on some riders that came from the House. We haven't been able to do that yet. There's a lot of opposition to funding the homeland security without us passing the riders. I have voted for the riders and will continue to do so. What we're trying to do, Maria, is rein in a runaway president, a president that has basically, in my view and others, have disregarded the Constitution. He's grabbed a lot of power. There's got to be a check somewhere. This is a good start.
BARTIROMO: And you oppose the bill because it fails to address that executive amnesty, as you called it?
SHELBY: Absolutely. I voted against that. A lot of us did. We'll see what happens this week. But we all want to fund the government, but at the same time we want to be heard on something that we believe is meritorious, to check the president on what he is doing, I believe, that's unconstitutional.
BARTIROMO: Senator, I want to talk more about this with you as well as get your take on Benjamin Netanyahu's trip this week. So stay with us.
But first, will our lawmakers will be able to rise above the aftermath of last week's chaos and finally reach a comprise on a funding bill?
Fox News's senior correspondent Eric Shawn joins us with that angle.
Good morning to you, Eric.
SHAWN: Good morning, Maria.
And good morning, everyone. They now have less than one week, not the three weeks Speaker Boehner wanted. The Department of Homeland Security remains funded and President Obama's controversial executive action on immigration -- well, that remains in place at least for just five more days.
SEN. TED CRUZ, R-TEXAS: All over the country Republican Senate and House candidates told the people, if you give us a Republican majority, we will stop President Obama's illegal and unconstitutional amnesty. I think we need to follow through on that commitment.
SHAWN: That's the vow to fight the president's plan to give legal status to 5 million illegals. But tying that to funding for the Department of Homeland Security, for now, did not work. The House speaker has to cobble together a new deal to try and keep the money flowing in the face of growing opposition. The 52 members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus stood their ground. They are not giving up their effort to defund what they say is the president's violation of the Constitution with this unilateral immigration action.
After all, the Caucus mission gives, quote, "a voice to countless Americans who feel that Washington does not represent them. We support open, accountable and limited government and the Constitution and the rule of law and policies that promote liberty, safety, and prosperity for all Americans."
Well, tomorrow the Senate will weigh whether it will negotiate with the House over the immigration issue, and the House could then consider a so-called "clean bill" this coming week, one that does not tie the department funding to immigration.
And then there is this. The funding bill the president did sign on Friday night is called "the Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act." Who could be against protecting volunteer firefighters? If Washington was a bit more truthful, perhaps we could then really trust it. Maria?
BARTIROMO: All right. Eric, thank you very much. Eric Shawn with the latest there.
We are back now with more from Senator Richard Shelby.
Would you agree or sign a bill that actually separates the immigration executive order out of it, Senator?
SHELBY: Not now. I hope we will ultimately get the vote on the merits of what we're trying to do, that is to rein in the president's unconstitutional decrees, but we'll see what happens this week.
We, as I said earlier, want to fund the government. But we also believe it's important to rein in this president.
BARTIROMO: Let me move on to Benjamin Netanyahu's trip to talk with Congress this upcoming week. Senator, what do we know so far about these talks that have been going on with Iran, John Kerry, of course, resuming those talks this upcoming Tuesday?
SHELBY: Well, we do know from briefings and other things that it seems to me that this administration is chasing a deal, that they're desperate for a deal, some kind of deal, and that's not the way to negotiate.
I believe, at the end of the day, it will not be -- whatever agreement they reach, if they reach an agreement with Iran, it will be not in our favor; it will be in Iran's favor. They will continue to pursue and ultimately get nuclear weapons. We should hang back and pass strong sanctions on these people. It's worked. It will work more.
BARTIROMO: So -- so let's talk about what you would like to see as a must-have in any agreement with Iran. Of course, critics of the deal, including those in Congress, have demanded complete dismantlement of Iran's program, given the history of lying in terms of its making uranium enrichment. Is that where you are on this? Do you want complete...
SHELBY: I am. I think that -- I think, if Iran gets nuclear weapons, which they're doing everything to do, it's a game-changer in the Persian Gulf, in the Middle East. You're going to have an arms race we've never seen. Other nations over there, Egypt, Saudi Arabia -- they're going to go for a nuclear weapons and they've got the money to do it. And what's going to happen then? It's just a game-changer.
Then look at Israel there. Israel surrounded by all of that. It's a tough game. I think we need to stop them now if we are ever going to stop them.
BARTIROMO: So -- so what are you expecting to hear from Prime Minister Netanyahu this week?
SHELBY: I think that we will hear probably a different version of what the talks are about, probably similar to what I was just alluding to, not the rosy thing that the president is putting out. But I think that we need to hear from him. You know, I think we'd get a different perspective. I think we need to invite him.
The president doesn't want him here because he's chasing that deal, as I say. And Netanyahu is standing in the way of it and a lot of us hope to stand in the way of it.
BARTIROMO: Right, understood. And I can see why that would seem really not unreasonable, to hear Israel's position.
Let me move on to Janet Yellen. You were among those questioning her last week when she testified in her semiannual speech to Congress. What did you learn about the Federal Reserve after speaking with the chairwoman, Janet Yellen?
SHELBY: Well, the chairwoman was very cautious on talking about raising interest rates and other things, which she should be. We -- I don't want to outguess the feds, but right now inflation is basically under control. But we don't know that down the road. And I think we have got to look at it what happens in the federal open market committee in the next two or three months.
BARTIROMO: So you'd like to see them start raising rates this year, then, Senator?
SHELBY; Well, I'd -- I would hope we would never raise rates, but sometimes you have to raise rates if inflation starts showing its head in a big way. Price stability is very important, as you well know.
BARTIROMO: Senator, good to have you on the program today. Thanks so much.
SHELBY: Thank you, Maria.
BARTIROMO: Senator Richard Shelby, joining us this morning from Alabama.
British intel identifying the ISIS suspect known as "Jihadi John." Will that help us in the war against the terror group? We will ask a former CIA operative who is now a congressman assigned to a special homeland security task force.
I hope you'll follow me on Twitter @mariabartiromo @sundayfutures. Let us know what you'd like to hear coming up in the program, as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."
BARTIROMO: Welcome back. The identification of ISIS terrorist "Jihadi John" sparking a barrage of finger-pointing in the U.K., critics wondering how this young London college graduate, who was reportedly on MI5'S watch list, was able to evade, capture, and slip into Syria.
Congressman William Hurd is a former CIA undercover operative. He's on the House Homeland Security Committee's task force on combating terrorist and foreign fighter travel.
Sir, good to have you on the program. Thanks very much for joining us.
REP. WILL HURD, R-TEXAS: Thanks for having me.
BARTIROMO: So before we look at how he was able to evade the -- the government, let me ask you about identifying this individual to be "Jihadist (sic) John." What does that do for the U.S. and allies in its war against the terrorists?
HURD: Well, it gives us someone to focus on and it gives us the ability to look at his known associates, previous travel. It gives us a target to go after. So identifying him is a good thing. And, you know, this is one of the most difficult parts of -- of chasing terrorists.
You know, I spent nine years as an undercover officer in the CIA. I was the guy in the back allies at 4:00 in the morning collecting intelligence. And when you have an identity of someone, that allows you to start building out a package around them to bring them to justice and their associates to justice.
BARTIROMO: Yeah, it's -- it's quite extraordinary to hear people who knew him and grew up with him and saw him in school and what they think of him today. How did he evade everyone and slip into Syria?
HURD: Well, you know, when you have so many people that you're watching, you know, you look at the number of folks of interest to the MI5, if this person hadn't committed any crimes to that point, it's hard to devote the resources to him.
But this is an example of how scary ISIS is and the clear and present danger they are to the United States. Their ability to get their message out and to influence people is unparalleled. When I was in Afghanistan and Pakistan chasing groups like the Taliban and Al Qaida, to get their message out, they would do something called "night letters." They would really write letters and leave it on people's doorsteps. And they were able to hit 100 people, maybe a couple hundred people in an evening. But, you know, what ISIS is doing and how they're managing social media to get their message out to tens of millions of people, we haven't seen that from an terrorist organization heretofore.
BARTIROMO: And how is it that they are so experienced at this?
I mean, put this group in perspective for us relative to what you've seen in the past?
HURD: Well, they're sophisticated. Most of them are digital natives, you know, and so they've been growing up and learning these tools since -- since they were born. And they have -- they have very sophisticated and smart folks behind them.
You know, a lot of times we want to look at that these -- these terrorists that we're facing across the world are guys that are living in cage -- caves -- excuse me -- and are really backwards. But it's the exact opposite. They read more about the U.S. They know more about what we're doing and how we're trying to counter them. And they're a sophisticated threat that we need to make sure we treat them that way.
BARTIROMO: They have also got high-tech equipment, which, of course, they stole from the Iraqi army, which of course was left by the Americans when the Americans pulled out of Iraq.
Let me ask you what the U.S. should be doing at this point. What is the most effective way to degrade and destroy ISIS?
HURD: I think the best model we can look at is think Afghanistan December of 2001. When we went into Afghanistan after 9/11 and killed about a quarter of Al Qaida leadership, pushed all the Taliban out of the country, the fall of Kandahar, in which the city in southern Afghanistan, there were less than 500 Americans in Afghanistan, 100 CIA, 400 special forces.
And they were able to do what they did because they partnered with local -- local groups. And we can do that in Syria and Iraq. We should be working with our Arab allies in the region. ISIS is a threat not only to us, to the Israelis; they're a threat to the Jordanians, to the Egyptians, to the Emiratis, to the Turks.
Last week the president of Egypt was talking about having an Arab group come together to fight these. So we need continued air strikes, fixed and unmanned aerial vehicles, and we need to be working with our local partners and have them be our boots on the ground in order to destroy this threat.
BARTIROMO: All right. We'll be watching.
Congressman, good to have you on the program today. Thanks very much.
HURD: Thank you.
BARTIROMO: We appreciate it. Representative William Hurd from Texas joining us.
Up next, what the technology boom means for jobs and the economy in your backyard, even if you don't live in Silicon Valley. The chairman and president of the San Francisco Federal Reserve is with us next on that and a lot more, as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."
BARTIROMO: It was a big week this past week for markets and the economy as the chairman of the Federal Reserve, Janet Yellen, testified in front of Congress.
Of course, it's a big week next week, as well. This upcoming week will bring us the latest jobs number.
And we want to find out exactly where are the jobs and where is the growth in this economy.
And I am happy to welcome to the program John Williams.
He is the president of the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank.
John, it's good to have you on the show today.
JOHN WILLIAMS, PRESIDENT, SAN FRANCISCO FEDERAL RESERVE BANK: It's great to be here.
BARTIROMO: Thank you so much for joining us.
First, let me look forward, as we like to look to the future on -- on this program and ask you about jobs, as we are awaiting that jobs report for the last month.
Where are the jobs in this country right now?
WILLIAMS: So last year was an amazing year for job growth. And the - - and I don't know if we'll match the numbers we saw last year, with like three million new jobs. But I do expect job growth to be above 200,000 a month this year. I expect unemployment to continue to come down. And I -- I also am very encouraged by the fact that we're not seeing job growth just in one sector or another. It's pretty broad-based. It's both in the lower -- lower paying jobs, but also higher paying jobs.
So we're seeing a lot of positive developments there. And, you know, honestly, I think within -- by the end of the year, we'll be at something like 5 percent unemployment kind of where full employment is.
BARTIROMO: We just had the end and a resolution to the longshoremen's strike. That was certainly a positive for the economy. You had Walmart recently raising -- raising salaries for 500,000 employees there.
Is this a sign that we are actually beginning to see a turn in terms of wages and American families seeing their salaries go up?
WILLIAMS: Well, I -- I would say we're seeing a lot of indicators that wages and salaries are starting to pick up. The data, of course, is backward looking. I can tell you what happened over the last 12 months. And wages grew about 2.25 percent.
But we're seeing a lot more anecdotal reports and, you know, reports of individual companies where we're seeing a lot more wage pressure. This is good thing for the U.S. economy. Wage growth has been below where it needs to be to be at full employment, to be at 2 percent inflation.
So I'm very encouraged by these signs. I'm going to look for further improvement in wage growth.
BARTIROMO: And yet when you talk about inflation, other people talk about deflation, the fact that oil prices have come down 50 percent over the last year. Food prices are down so much.
What's going on in the whole commodities complex that is causing all these prices to go down?
WILLIAMS: Well, it just -- it's a -- it's a stark reminder that we're in a global economy where we import all of our goods, whether it's food, whether it's energy, especially energy.
So, you know, we're a huge oil importer. That's going to drive down U.S. energy prices, when oil prices fell. So that is a big factor bringing inflation down in recent months.
Looking forward, oil prices have kind of turned up a bit. We don't expect them to fall further. So I would expect underlying inflation to stabilize and then over the next year and two, start moving back to 2 percent.
BARTIROMO: A lot of people are expecting the Federal Reserve to begin raising interest rates either in June or in September. You've said it's very much data dependent.
What's the most important data point that you would say to your colleagues on the Fed, look, we've got this data point, it's time to move and raise interest rates?
WILLIAMS: To me, you know, what -- what it all filters down to is where do I see the labor market going over the next year or two, where do I see inflation going over the next few years. So it all filters through our forecast.
It's important to remember in thinking about this, that monetary policy takes a year or two before it has full effect on in -- on the economy and inflation.
BARTIROMO: Why haven't we seen the kind of business spending one would expect at this point in the recovery?
WILLIAMS: Well, the -- you know, the -- I think business spending does follow the economy pretty closely. I mean the biggest driver of a lot of business investment is really what's happened in the overall economy. And the economic recovery, although good, hasn't been really that rapid.
I think as the momentum has built last year and going into this year, in terms of growth, seeing growth this year, I expect real GDP growth to be about 3 percent, that we'll see business investments pick up.
BARTIROMO: Are you surprised that we haven't seen consumer spending pick up more given the fact that they have saved all this money at the gasoline pump?
WILLIAMS: Well, but I -- I do think consumer spending's trajectory has actually been quite good. You know, auto sales are at very high levels.
WILLIAMS: So there's a lot of signs of a good consumer spending trajectory going into this year and -- and for this year.
So I'm not really worried about the consumers. One area we're watching carefully is what's happened with the housing recovery in terms of housing construction, housing sales. And that data has been somewhat encouraging.
But still -- it's still pretty low levels.
BARTIROMO: Why has it been so hard for housing to -- to gain traction in this economy?
WILLIAMS: Well, you know, it's funny, when you ask that, because house prices have recovered pretty fully. And, of course, I'm in the Bay Area and it's a hot -- a hot housing market. So maybe that's not representative.
House prices have recovered quite a bit. But it's the housing construction. You know, I think that there is a psychological aspect to that. A lot of people are nervous about jumping back into the housing market, especially first time buyers.
BARTIROMO: Let me ask you about where you're hailing from, and that's San Francisco. And you're seeing vibrancy there. You're talking about an economy that has recovered.
Is San Francisco outperforming the rest of the country?
I mean the unemployment rate there 3.7 percent.
What kind of activity are you seeing on the ground there?
Is it as vibrant as everyone says in terms of entrepreneurialism and what's happening with technology and biotech?
WILLIAMS: Oh, sure. Absolutely. You -- you see it everywhere. You know, it's -- you see it in terms of the employment numbers. You mentioned that already. It's not just in San Francisco. It's not just in Silicon Valley. It's all over the Bay Area. It's in Seattle. You know, a lot of the tech companies, big companies that are based up in Seattle, it's all along the West Coast.
And so it's a very exciting time. You know, a lot of -- you know, you go to cafes and everyone is sitting there and they're developing the next app. And it -- it is very exciting West Coast.
And so it's a very exciting time. You know, a lot of -- you know, you go to cafes and everyone is sitting there and they're developing the next app. And it -- it is very exciting, the situation. And we're seeing a lot of construction, a lot of vibrancy in the economy.
It shows you, you know, how important innovation is for -- for the economy, for jobs, but also I just think for the global economy.
BARTIROMO: As you look back at Janet Yellen testifying this past week on the Hill, what was her main message, do you think?
WILLIAMS: Unemployment has come down, employment grew really rapidly. On that part of our mandate, our employment mandate, things have really gotten a lot better. I would still -- we still have a ways to go, but we've made a lot of progress.
Inflation is still the question mark. Inflation is below 2 percent. A lot of the factors you mentioned already that have been holding inflation down, energy prices, import prices, commodity prices in general.
BARTIROMO: And the farm story.
WILLIAMS: Sure. And the -- and so when we have the -- looking ahead, you know, obviously, we expect inflation to move gradually back to 2 percent once those influences that are holding inflation down ebb over time, so it's a strong economy, so it's feeding into bringing inflation back to 2 percent.
BARTIROMO: How do the happenings in Europe, like Greece pushing back on austerity, how does all of that impact the U.S.?
WILLIAMS: When you ask me what keeps me up at night or what are the risks to the U.S. economy, honestly, they're mostly aboard. They're about Europe. They're about Asia. They're not really about the U.S. recovery, which I think is on solid footing. It's really looking aboard and those developments especially the geopolitical issues and seeing how those might spill into the U.S. markets and the U.S. economy.
BARTIROMO: So that it impacts the U.S. through markets or through trade.
What's the most important direct hit?
WILLIAMS: Well, Greece is, you know, Greece it would be more, I think, a confidence issue in the euro area and through markets. I think it would be the primary concern there.
BARTIROMO: John, it's great to have you on the show today.
WILLIAMS: It's great to be here.
BARTIROMO: Thanks so much for joining us.
John Williams is the president of the San Francisco Federal Reserve.
And up next, will the murder of Vladimir Putin's most outspoken rival galvanize the fragmented opposition groups in Russia?
Our panel starts there and moves on to the 2016 race in the U.S., as we look ahead on SUNDAY MORNING FUTURES.
Stay with us.
BARTIROMO: It was to be an opposition protest against the war in Ukraine and corruption in Russia. Today it is today it is a gathering of mourners in central Moscow for Boris Nemtsov, President Putin's most outspoken political opponent.
Let me bring in our panel to talk more about this. Ed Rollins is former principal White House adviser to President Reagan. He has been a longtime strategist to business and political leaders. And he is a FOX News political analyst.
Judith Miller is an adjunct fellow at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. She is a Pulitzer Prize-winning author and journalists, and a FOX News contributor.
And former world chess champion Garry Kasparov is chairman of the New York-based Human Rights Foundation. He is a writer and a political activist who has been thrown in jail by Vladimir Putin.
Good to good to see everybody. Thank you so much for joining us.
And, Garry, let me kick this off with you. I'm thrilled that you're here to talk about such an important event that occurred over the weekend. Murder in Russia. How do you see it?
GARRY KASPAROV, CHAIRMAN, HUMAN RIGHTS FOUNDATION: Look, I knew Boris for more than two decades, and was working closely with him since 2004, and I couldn't believe my ears when I heard this news. I was shattered.
The man was full of life. And he has been fighting Putin to the last hour of his life. He had his last interview just 40 minutes before he was killed, and he called Yeltsin's choice of Putin the gravest mistake of Yeltsin's presidency.
And he was about to release a new report on Ukraine, proving that Russian regular troops participated in the aggressive actions in eastern -- in the east of Ukraine.
BARTIROMO: So do you think that was one of the catalysts or was Putin trying to take him down and kill him or get him killed for a long time?
KASPAROV: Look, we can't prove that Putin was giving an order to eliminate the most vocal critic of his regime. But the atmosphere that has been created with this paranoia, the fear, the hatred that has been spread by Russian propaganda machine 24-7, with Nemtsov one of those who were called "national traitors," "enemies of the state," the "fifth columnists," anything could have happened.
But what is very important, when you look at the video that has been released, and it's -- people should realize Nemtsov was shot at a place that had more video cameras than Fort Knox, you know, just a few hundred yards away from Kremlin.
And exactly at the spot where he was killed, suddenly we could see the snow removal truck that covered the angle of the camera that could show us the face of the killer.
And the killer made six shots in two seconds. Four of them were deadly. That tells you something about qualification of those who killed. And then suddenly the car appears outside just behind the snow removal truck. And the car picks up the guy. They disappear. And that's it.
And police, first thing they did, they removed all the traces. You know, you could see the powerful (INAUDIBLE) moving away all the traces, including blood.
BARTIROMO: That is just extraordinary. And tomorrow, Judy, Secretary of State John Kerry is meeting with the Russian foreign minister to talk about regional issues, the Ukraine crisis. I mean, how does this event play into that?
JUDITH MILLER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, he's also going to talk about the deal in Iran because Russia is very important in supporting that deal. And I just can't imagine what kind of conversation they're going have after such a brazen act like this.
You know, Putin himself said, oh, I'm going to lead the investigation into the death of this Russian. I mean, that is such chutzpah. It goes beyond chutzpah. But I have to salute.
BARTIROMO: Yes, he's leading the investigation.
MILLER: . Boris Nemtsov. Boris Nemtsov, Garry Kasparov, to fight against Putin is really an act of courage. And it shows you how determined and how tough the Russian opposition to this terrible dictatorship is.
BARTIROMO: And it takes such unbelievable courage. And, Garry, you have done it for years and were thrown in jail. But, I mean, if you were there, it's anyone's guess if you were there right now.
KASPAROV: Unfortunately, it's not a guess anymore.
BARTIROMO: That's right.
KASPAROV: . we understand what happens with any critic of Putin's regime in Russia.
ROLLINS: It's just very important for the American public to understand this is not a democracy no matter what we want to call it. This is a very ruthless man, probably the strongest leader I've seen in my lifetime in the opposition.
He wants to basically suppress his people, expand his empire. And we need to understand that. We can't basically deal with him from a position of weakness, we have to deal with him as a position of strength.
BARTIROMO: Does the U.S. leadership understand?
ROLLINS: Well, I don't think they do. And I think we -- contrast that, here is the richest, most powerful man in the world, the most ruthless man in the world on one side, and I think one of the weakest presidents we've ever had.
KASPAROV: I agree. I agree. And, by the way, I think that's the -- his successes or the way he thinks successes in his foreign policy, you know, in Ukraine and the way that Western leaders are trying to find a compromise, they're making him even more arrogant.
Don't forget Kristallnacht in Germany, it took place six weeks after the Munich capitulation.
MILLER: Putin is a bully. Bullies only back down when they're challenged. He doesn't think he's being challenged by the United States or NATO. He has nothing to fear.
BARTIROMO: There's clearly no challenge coming from the U.S. on this.
All right. Stay us with, everybody. We want to get a look at what is coming up on "MediaBuzz" top of the hour, check in with Howard Kurtz before we move on to U.S. issues.
Howie, good morning to you.
HOWARD KURTZ, HOST, "MEDIA BUZZ": Good morning, Maria.
Got an interview with David Axelrod. We'll talk about the Obama administration's cozy relationship with the press in some of the campaigns. We're also going to look at the media-bashing that took place at the CPAC conference. I was there.
How the press is treating some of the people who spoke to that crowd, Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, and the question that all of America wants an answer to? Should we take him seriously when Donald Trump says the 75 to 80 percent chance that this time probably he will run for president?
BARTIROMO: All right. We're going to be there, Howie. We will see you in about 20 minutes.
Also I want to get the panel's take on 2016 and what came out of CPAC, next. But first before that, high level negotiations with sweeping impacts on national security. Can you guess whether I'm talking about Netanyahu coming to Washington, talking about Iran's nuclear program, or the political impasse over the DHS funding?
Our panel will address all the above as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."
BARTIROMO: Welcome back. Our panel is back and our panel is back and a very busy week coming up for Congress. Ed Rollins, Judy Miller, and Garry Kasparov with me this morning.
Let's talk about Benjamin Netanyahu's trip to Congress, and his speech. What are you expecting, Judy?
MILLER: Well, I know that Bibi Netanyahu is saying that this is not about domestic Israeli politics. This is about Iran and what he thinks is a bad deal not only for Israel, unsupportable for Israel, but bad for the United States, bad for the West, bad for Iran's neighbors.
But in Israel, everyone is talking about this as a domestic political move to win the election. And I think that what Netanyahu has done, even though the message may be important, he could have delivered it from AIPAC, is he has injected Israel into partisan American politics. That's a very dangerous thing to do.
BARTIROMO: It might be a dangerous thing to do, Ed, but at the same time don't we want to hear -- shouldn't we hear Israel's position on this?
ROLLINS: Absolutely. And where I differ with my friend Judy, which I seldom do, is this is an equal branch of government. They have a role to play in this. They're entitled to bring anybody forward they want to hear from.
This highlights this, then the American public are going to hear a different viewpoint. We've not heard what the details are. This -- Kerry ought to be addressing the Congress, and he obviously isn't.
This is going to be a bad, bad deal. And it's going to show great weakness. And the president and John Kerry are so anxious for any deal that they are willing to sell out anybody. So I welcome his appearance.
KASPAROV: I side with Ed on this issue. I believe that AIPAC would be the wrong platform because that turns the whole issue into Israeli domestic problem while we're dealing with the existential threat to Israel.
But it's a major challenge for the United States, for the West, because Iran might get nuclear. And we know from suddenly the announced deal with Cuba that, you know, it's very difficult to verify what is behind it.
But with Cuba it's political. With Iran, you know, there's so many military and political aspects that I believe it should be solely investigated by the Congress, and the American public must be aware of every detail, which might, by the way, present a threat to U.S. national security.
BARTIROMO: I think that's exactly the point. I mean, Richard Shelby earlier in the program said, look, if Iran goes nuclear, this is a game- changer for the world. So why can't Congress understand fully what is being talked about?
ROLLINS: Even best case, in 10 years -- 10 years was a very short lifetime on this agreement, allowed to go nuclear.
MILLER: But we don't know what the deal is yet. Let's wait and see. However, we have to point out, what is Bibi Netanyahu's alternative to a deal with Iran? What is anyone's alternative to a deal with Iran? Let's wait and see the deal is, and then we can condemn it if it merits condemnation.
BARTIROMO: Well, he's trying to get ahead of it so that he could make the point of what he's most afraid of or what is most damaging to Israel and the world, frankly.
KASPAROV: Judy, I mean, I'm curious, you know, you want to see what the deal is after it's signed?
MILLER: No. I want to.
KASPAROV: Or in the process here? We already have ObamaCare, the law on immigration, we -- FCC regulations. You know, they sign something and then they say, OK, read it.
BARTIROMO: Or in 10 years where they don't read it.
MILLER: The administration has denied the initial reports that this was going to be 10 years only, and after that Iran could do it if they wanted. They say, no, that's not it.
ROLLINS: Why do they get everything they want and we don't get anything we want? I mean, Obama and Kerry want a deal. This is part of their two-year legacy plan. At the end of the day here, Bibi's task is to protect his homeland. Our task is to protect our country and the regions of the world by not allowing the most dangerous country in the world to have nuclear weapons.
BARTIROMO: And they're talking about, if anything comes together, any agreement would have to establish verifiable limits on the nuclear program, and ensure that Iran cannot quickly produce enough weapons-usable material for a bomb.
And so having Congress shut out of this discussion to me is just extraordinary.
MILLER: They're not shut out of the discussion. There's going to be lots of discussion. And it's not clear that the president can make a deal that Congress won't have some say in, which is what the ayatollah himself expressed concern about.
So I think we ought to wait and see what they come up with. There will be plenty of time to attack it and even stop if it's really a bad deal.
BARTIROMO: Let me ask you this, because of the controversy around this trip, and because the president is upset that Netanyahu is coming and going directly to Congress, what does it mean for the relationship between the U.S. and Israel?
And does now Israel expect that the president of the free world is not supportive or was he not anyway?
ROLLINS: Well, he has not been supportive anyways. And at the end of the day, it can't be any worse at the administration level.
But I go back to the point that Congress is an equal branch of government. Most Americans don't realize that anymore. The president doesn't run the government. The president runs one element of it, the Congress runs one element. They have every right to bring anybody they want to testify before them.
BARTIROMO: All right. Let's take a short break. When we come back, 2016, Rand Paul won the straw poll again. Again. We will ask the panel what surprised them about that and about CPAC, and what it may mean for the GOP in 2016.
We're looking ahead this morning on "Sunday Morning Futures."
BARTIROMO: Welcome back. We're back with our panel: Ed Rollins, Judy Miller, Garry Kasparov.
And CPAC has happened and once again Rand Paul won the straw poll. What does it mean, Ed?
ROLLINS: Well, he has a very strong organization. They turn out. But you have to imagine, there is 12,000 people participate. Diehard activists come to this, 3,000 of them vote. He won with 25 percent, which means he got about 800 votes.
It's a national media story, every newspaper in America, for 800 votes, that's pretty darn good.
You know, I think Walker had a good show. Walker came in second.
BARTIROMO: That was the surprise...
ROLLINS: That's the surprise.
BARTIROMO: . how well Walker did.
ROLLINS: And equally as important, the story that really no one wants to deal with is this group, conservative libertarian, has basically rejected the establishment candidates: Jeb Bush, Christie, Perry, others didn't do well at all.
BARTIROMO: It would have been a surprise if he didn't win, Rand Paul, right, Garry?
KASPAROV: (INAUDIBLE) his father, he was the only possible winner in this crowd.
MILLER: Yes, but what does that mean? I mean, it doesn't mean anything because the people, except the base, may not be excited about the person who is likely to be nominated as the Republican presidential candidate if the Republican Party is lucky, because somebody whom CPAC wants probably can't win a national election.
BARTIROMO: Well, you said, you know, Scott Walker did well, but then there was criticism over what he said in terms of unions.
ROLLINS: It's one statement, and obviously foreign policy is your thing, I promise you he came out of this enhanced. He has become in six to eight weeks a very serious contender. There is no frontrunner in this thing.
Bush is rolling up tons of money, but he is becoming the party of the establishment, Wall Street. And there's a real strong element in our party that doesn't want that.
And my sense, if Bush is going to be the banner-carrier of that group, he's going to have a long hard battle here.
BARTIROMO: A long hard battle with the other candidates on the.
BARTIROMO: . GOP side or a long hard battle with Hillary?
ROLLINS: Absolutely. Remember the thing that killed Romney last time was too (ph) fully (ph) with the rich, he didn't relate to ordinary people? (INAUDIBLE) people that he had a better plan, better leader, all the rest, and he lost at the end of the day.
We cannot be the party of basically Wall Street and be successful long term.
MILLER: I don't think that Scott Walker, a man who compares union people to ISIS, who behead, crucify, smash statues, that that indicates that he's quite ready for presidential prime time, Ed, do you?
ROLLINS: Long time -- a long ways to go. And foreign policy will be -- every one of these governors will be very up on foreign policy in the very near future.
BARTIROMO: And then, Garry, you said a long time ago, foreign policy will probably be the number one issue for voters.
KASPAROV: Yes, and I want to reiterate that. I think the Bush- Clinton debate will be (INAUDIBLE) for American image in the world. I think (INAUDIBLE) the past, who did wrong, something. It will be just, you know, rematch of 1992.
Yes, and it's really, really dangerous because it will move America in the wrong direction.
And as for Scott Walker, look, you know, he is the governor -- Republican governor in a blue state. I think the state that was on the Democratic column since 1984. And what is very important, you know, who -- he succeeded in pushing his agenda, which meant that he could negotiate with Democrats.
That's very important for the total impasse in Washington now, to have somebody who already had an experience -- successful experience in dealing, you know, sort of across the party line.
BARTIROMO: That's leadership.
ROLLINS: If I would have said eight weeks ago, watch Scott Walker, he's going to be the second or leading all the polls, you would have all chuckled at me. He has moved in eight weeks to a very significant position, which will help him in fundraising, organization, all the rest of it.
We have a long ways to go and there is no frontrunner.
BARTIROMO: Are some of the other guys that are in the race now, do you think, VP candidates?
ROLLINS: Well, the V.P. candidate will be whoever does best and can offer another state. There is a long ways to go before we pick our nominee, let alone our V.P. candidate, so.
MILLER: I think Carly Fiorina was very interesting, and she could attack Hillary as a woman in a way that male candidates might be.
ROLLINS: She lost California by a million votes in her Senate race. And she has never been elected. And she had a disastrous career at HP. And that became a big issue in the California primary in which she laid off 30,000 workers and sent them overseas. Now if that's who we'll have as our vice-presidential candidate.
MILLER: But at least she didn't compare them to ISIS.
BARTIROMO: Yes. It sounds like you don't think there is any contender so far for Hillary, Judy.
MILLER: I really don't.
BARTIROMO: All right. We will take a short break. Still to come, the one thing to watch for in the week ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures," from our panel. Stay with us.
BARTIROMO: Welcome back. With our panel, the one big thing to watch in the upcoming week.
ROLLINS: The DHS -- the funding for the Department of Homeland Security, a real battle this week. It's a real test of whether Boehner can get his troops in line. They are not going to basically win the -- repealing Obama program so...
BARTIROMO: The executive action.
ROLLINS: The executive -- and the story is now that the conservatives are thinking of finding a candidate to overthrow Boehner. If that occurs - - they won't do it, but if they try and do it, it will really be a bad sign for.
BARTIROMO: If Homeland Security runs out of money, and Boehner -- is Boehner in trouble if that's the case?
ROLLINS: I think Republicans are in trouble if that's the case. I think we have lost the fight internally and we have to let the courts just make the decision on the executive orders at this point in time. Let's make the government run.
MILLER: I, of course, am watching Bibi Netanyahu and the speech on Tuesday. But I think it's really interesting that in Israel, people will not be seeing it live, they're going to see it with a five-minute delay so that the censors are looking at whether or not Bibi is saying anything political that might affect the election, and that will be cut out.
BARTIROMO: Yes, a lot of distraction around this meeting. And really, the point of the meeting is Iran, which is really what I care about.
Garry, what are you watching?
KASPAROV: Many important things that will happen this coming week, but, of course, I'll be watching the funeral of Boris Nemtsov on Tuesday in Moscow. And I hope that nothing terrible will happen during this process in the center of Moscow. And I will be waiting to see whether Putin will do something else, something dramatic in Ukraine.
BARTIROMO: All right. We'll leave it there. Thanks, everybody, for joining us.
KASPAROV: Thank you.
ROLLINS: Thank you.
MILLER: Thank you.
BARTIROMO: That will do it for "Sunday Morning Futures." Have a great Sunday. I'll see you tomorrow on Fox Business.
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