House Speaker John Boehner defends Republican Congress' record

This is a rush transcript from "Sunday Morning Futures," April 19, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARIA BARTIROMO, HOST: Good morning. President Obama's saying he is open to "creative negotiations" with Iran.

Hi, everyone. I'm Maria Bartiromo. Welcome to "Sunday Morning Futures."

Iranian leaders placing new demands that would come with a final deal on its nuclear program this morning, as talks resume this upcoming week. I'll ask the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee about Congress's involvement in all of this.

Plus, House Speaker John Boehner sits down with me in an exclusive to talk Cuba, no longer considered a state sponsor of terrorism. And I'll get his reaction to Hillary Clinton joining the race, announcing her run for the White House.

Plus, Americans call for a tax overhaul. That is growing as another deadline passes. What should a tax overhaul look like? I'll ask the president of Americans for Tax Reform. Grover Norquist is with me, as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."

Iran placing new demands on a nuclear deal before diplomats from six world powers even return to the negotiating table on Wednesday, the country's Revolutionary Guard saying inspectors would, quote, "not be allowed into military facilities," this as President Obama said Friday he is open to "creative negotiations" when it comes to sanctions being lifted against Iran.

So what about the role of Congress? Will they have a say on a final deal? Texas Congressman Mac Thornberry is the House Armed Services Committee. He joins me now.

Congressman, good to have you on the program. Welcome.

REP. MAC THORNBERRY, R-TEXAS: Thank you, ma'am.

BARTIROMO: Are you surprised that the so-called framework is completely different from the Ayatollah's standpoint versus the president's standpoint?

THORNBERRY: No, I'm not surprised. It's been that way all along. It looks like the administration rushed to announce some great accomplishment when indeed they really don't have an agreement yet. And the concern that you hear not only here at home but around the world is the administration wants a deal at all costs. And therefore, you get into "creative negotiations" and those sorts of terms that sounds like they want to give in to whatever gets them a deal.

BARTIROMO: So -- so the president's agreed to sign the Corker bill, basically allowing Congress to see a deal before anything is signed. What would you like to hear this upcoming week as talks resume?

And, by the way, would a deal fly if, in fact, U.N. inspectors were not allowed into their military bases?

THORNBERRY: Well, I don't think so. It certainly shouldn't because verification of any agreement is one of those fundamental bedrocks for any sort of negotiation, and if you don't have that, then you don't have an agreement and you're just deluding yourselves and everybody around the world if you pretend otherwise.

So these issues of verification, of how soon sanctions would be relieved, all of those things that have been swirling around there that we hear one thing from the Iranians, another thing from the administration, is -- is not resolved.

And that's part of the reason that there was bipartisan agreement in Congress that, whenever there is an agreement, then all of the final wording of that agreement comes to Congress so we can review it for a period of at least 30 days.

BARTIROMO: Do you think there will be, in fact, an agreement?

THORNBERRY: I don't know. I'm doubtful there will be a real agreement that is effective. I worry, again, the administration will put their name on any piece of paper just to say they did something, kind of, like they're doing with Cuba.

So I worry about that. I do not think that we are really going to effectively stop the Iranian nuclear program. Because they are just determined to get it.

BARTIROMO: All right. We have got to get back to more questions about Cuba. And I also want to get your take on this new video that was released this morning from ISIS. So please stay with us, Congressman Thornberry, a lot to talk about with you this morning.

But first, we're looking toward the road ahead in finalizing this nuclear agreement with Iran. Can the sticking points be overcome? Fox News's senior correspondent Eric Shawn with that angle.

Eric, good morning to you.


And good morning, everyone. The deal isn't even finished, and critics charge President Obama as already giving in, that the day after reports say Iran Army Day was celebrated yet again with that reflexive chant "Death to America."

Iran is demanding all sanctions be dropped completely when this deal is signed. Now the president is pressured, sanctions removed without any proof Iran is really cooperating. Iran says there will be no inspections at military sites, like the Parchin military complex where it's suspected nuclear research was conducted.

At his news conference on Friday, the president said this.


PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: The P-5-plus-1's job is to sometimes find formulas that get to our main concerns while allowing the other side to make a presentation to their body politic that is more acceptable.

SHAWN (voice over): But Illinois Republican Senator Mark Kirk, who sponsored the original sanctions bill, accuses Iran of backtracking.

SEN. MARK KIRK, R-ILL.: Secretary Kerry recently testified before the Senate that it would only take two more months for Iran to build a bomb. We must use strong economic pressure on Iran to prevent them from getting nuclear weapons.


SHAWN (on camera): Supporters say any agreement is better than none at all, and it will delay Iran's nuclear program. But then there was this blunt threat from Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, saying, quote, "If we take the path of confrontation, the United States and the United Nations will continue with their sanctions and Iran will continue with its enrichment program without any limitations."

So as Iran threatens to enrich whatever it wants, the talks will resume in Vienna this coming week. The White House insists the president will only accept a deal with phased sanctions. But as Mr. Kerry presumably follows the president's orders to be "creative," skeptics hope that is not a creative way of just saying uncle. Maria?

BARTIROMO: All right. Eric, thanks very much. Eric Shawn with the latest there.

More now with Congressman Thornberry.

And, Congressman, all of this going on at a time that the situation in Yemen is deteriorating as the Americans are on the side of the Saudis, and Iran is saying, if the Saudi-led upset in Yemen continues, there will be more bloodshed?

THORNBERRY: Yeah, and this is a key point actually related to the Iranian issue. Because even if everything worked perfectly on nuclear deal, the effect would be that tons of money floods into Iran so they can have more money to fund their other activities, including their missile program and including their proxy war in Yemen, in Iraq, in Syria and elsewhere.

So all of those other activities where is Iran is aggressive, expanding their influence, making neighbors in the area nervous, like Saudi Arabia, et cetera, none of that is even on the table. And, actually, this deal makes Iran stronger. And that's one of the concerns that lots of people have.

BARTIROMO: You mentioned Cuba a moment ago, in terms of opening up relations there. What are your concerns?

SHAWN: My concerns are that the administration is determined to make peace with our enemies at any cost. And -- and I don't know that Cuba in and of itself has huge geopolitical implications, but I do know that countries around the world, in Eastern Europe, in Asia, in the Middle East are watching what we do with regard to Iran and Cuba and they're saying, "Do we really want to be friends with the United States anymore?"

And that has a destabilizing effect. It increases dangers around the world. And that may really be the legacy of the Obama administration.

BARTIROMO: Yeah, and more through executive action, by the way. Let me get your take on the video released this morning. Because then there is ISIS. And this morning ISIS apparently releasing a video -- appears to show the killing of two different groups of captured Ethiopian Christians by their Libyan affiliates. What can you tell us here?

THORNBERRY: Well, two things. One is we have seen a tremendous increase in the number of Christians being persecuted for their faith, and there are not enough people of all faiths speaking out to denounce it.

Secondly, regardless of the to-ing and fro-ing of land inside Iraq, you know, taking a city, losing a city, ISIS is growing, and they're growing ideologically; they're growing in Libya; they're growing in Afghanistan. A bomb there yesterday was attributed to ISIS in Jalalabad.

So this ideology and their influence is growing in competition with Al Qaida. So terrorism is on the move, and we're not -- we do not have an effective strategy to stop it right now.

BARTIROMO: So is there something we should be doing that we're not doing?

THORNBERRY: Yeah, we should be stronger. For example, the training we're doing in Iraq comes with restrictions. We will not let advisers go into the field with the people we have trained.

Secondly, we are not on the battlefield when it comes to social media and the ideological struggle. So part of what you've seen is ISIS growing in appeal. It's not targeted to us. It's targeting to those Muslims, especially 18-year-old males, in these countries, who might want to join their cause. And we're not even on the playing field in trying to prevent that.

You've seen the president of Egypt, King Hussein, starting to speak out about how we need to do more, but the United States isn't really helping.

BARTIROMO: Congressman, good to have you on the program today. Thanks so much.

THORNBERRY: Thank you, ma'am.

BARTIROMO: We will see you soon, Congressman Thornberry, there.

After 30 years, Cuba no longer considered a state sponsor of terrorism, President Obama removing the title as the U.S. looks to normalize relations with this dictatorship. House Speaker John Boehner is with me next, on that and a lot more, in my exclusive interview.

I hope you'll follow me on Twitter @mariabartiromo @sundayfutures. Let us know what you'd like to see on the program, as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."


BARTIROMO: Welcome back. House Speaker John Boehner told me this week that the trade deals that are pending on the table in Washington right now are critical for long-term economic growth for the U.S.

I spoke with Boehner in this exclusive this past week.


BARTIROMO: So we are now at the hundredth day for the GOP-controlled Congress, and, when you first took control, I think a lot of people had a lot of optimism that so much would get done; today, not so much.

Why haven't you been able to get more done?

REP. JOHN BOEHNER, R-OHIO: Well, we've gotten an awful lot done here in the House, whether it was passage of the Keystone Pipeline, which passed the House in a couple of hours. It took the Senate 23 days to do the Keystone Pipeline.

But the Clay Hunt suicide prevention bill to help reduce suicides amongst our veterans passed the House, passed the Senate, signed into law. Fixing the 40-hour work week in ObamaCare passed the house, still awaiting action in the Senate. We passed a plan to balance the budget. The Senate's passed a plan. We're in conference to try to get those resolved. Fixing the problems in Medicare and the way we pay doctors in Medicare -- that bill is on its way to the president, passed the House, passed the Senate; first entitlement reform in nearly 20 years and solves a problem we've been wrestling with for the last 11 years; 17 patches to the system that we use to pay doctors for Medicare services, finally fixed and, at the same time, strengthening and preserving Medicare for our seniors.

So we've gotten an awful lot done.

BARTIROMO: Let me ask you about Cuba. The president intends to take Cuba off of the government's list of nations that sponsor terrorism, eliminating a major obstacle to diplomatic relations. What has Cuba done to prove that this is, in fact, the right course of action?

BOEHNER: They have not done anything. The president keeps giving and giving and giving, and I want to see what the Castro brothers are giving. They've done nothing. I think this is unwise, unhelpful, and, I think, will lead almost nowhere.

BARTIROMO: So, I mean, what are you going to do about it at this point?

BOEHNER: Well, there's an appropriation process that will be started here by the end of the month. And I expect, when it comes to the appropriation bills, there will be riders added that will freeze the president's ability to do a lot of things that he says he's going to do. It'll be a hotly contested issue here in the House and the Senate.

BARTIROMO: Well, in terms of the executive actions, I think people want to know why it is that the president has been able to get through so much in terms of executive action without Congress's input?

BOEHNER: Well, the president would argue he's done less executive orders than other presidents. And that may or may not be the case. Presidents have the ability to take executive action, but they don't have the ability to change the law.

And whether it was immigration, where I believe the president clearly overreached; whether it was 38 changes to ObamaCare that the president made, I think those -- most of those exceeded his authority to do. And we're in litigation on both of those issues.

But when it comes to some of the issues with regard to Cuba, he has the ability to do some of this. But the Congress has an ability to speak as well. And we will, probably, through the appropriation process.

BARTIROMO: What is your observation to Hillary officially announcing?

BOEHNER: Well, what's she going to do for America? That's the real question. It's not about personalities. I think that the fact that she won't turn over her server, the fact that she's ignored the law when it comes to how she was supposed to communicate as the secretary of state -- those are going to -- those questions are going to continue to haunt her until she comes clean, until some independent third party that goes through these e-mails and determines which ones are public and which ones are clearly private.

BARTIROMO: It doesn't seem like she's going to allow that. I mean, do you think that, really, a third party, independent party, will get that server?

BOEHNER: I don't know that she can stonewall this for the next year and a half.

BARTIROMO: What do you think is going to be most important to voters this election, this next election? Will it be economic policy? Will it be foreign policy, something else?

BOEHNER: Well, it's going to be both of those issues. As we've seen in recent polling, the foreign policy concerns are now moving to the top of the list. Typically, when you have an economy that's improving a bit, people will move away from that issue and on to other concerns.

And when you look at the threats that are facing America from Iran and their threat of a nuclear weapon, their spread of terrorism throughout their region; when you look at ISIL and their affiliates around the Middle East and beyond, there are some very big concerns.

As you're aware, I was -- I spent nine days over the Easter recess in the Middle East. And it was remarkable to me that, one, whether it was Israel or their Arab neighbors, they were all on the same page, you know, "Where's America? When's America going to lead?"

And the threats are growing faster than the U.S.'s and our allies' ability to control this and to contain it. And it's clear to me that there's no overarching strategy to deal with both of these threats. And only the United States can lead this effort.

I think our allies -- they want to play ball; they want to be engaged with us, but they need us to lead. And the president clearly just will not lead and take on the serious threats that jeopardize that part of the world and frankly jeopardize the United States.

BARTIROMO: All right. Let me ask you about the debt ceiling, right around the corner, and the cap on defense spending. This is also so important because people want to know how you're going to remove that cap, get enough votes to pass. And are you willing to agree to increasing spending on nondefense in order to get that done?

BOEHNER: Well, we're going to attempt to work to increase the defense numbers without breaking the Budget Control Act. You know, there's a reason why the deficit is half of what it was four years ago. And that's because we insisted on cutting spending in exchange for increasing the debt ceiling. And -- and it's worked. And the controls on spending have in fact worked.

But when it comes to the defense side, clearly, more money is needed given the number of operations we're involved in overseas. And we believe that we can increase the amount of money available to defense without breaking The Budget Control Act.


BOEHNER: And we're going to attempt to do that.

BARTIROMO: And -- and will you agree to increase spending on non- defense to do that?

I mean what will it cost?

BOEHNER: I don't -- we're not -- I'm not sure we're going down that path. I think there's ample funds for the non-defense side of the budget.  Defense is where the big needs are.

BARTIROMO: Mr. Speaker, thanks for joining us today.

BOEHNER: Thank you.


BARTIROMO: Coming up next, and then there's tax reform -- most Americans agree that it needs to happen in a big way. So could this upcoming election signal the beginning of some major changes at the IRS?

We'll talk about that with Grover Norquist next, as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."


BARTIROMO: Welcome back.

As another IRS deadline comes and goes, the call for tax reform is growing. A recent study by Pew Research revealing nearly 60 percent of Americans say Congress should, quote, "Completely change the federal tax system."

The House took a stab at it this week, passing two bills, including one that would repeal the controversial estate tax, better known as the death tax. But with that legislation facing an uphill battle in the Senate and opposition from the White House, many have their eye on 2016 as the potential beginning of a true tax overhaul.

Joining me right now is the author of a new book, "End the IRS Before It Ends Us," and the president of Americans for Tax Reform, Grover Norquist.

Grover, good to see you. Thanks for joining us.

GROVER NORQUIST, AMERICANS FOR TAX REFORM: Hey, Maria, good to be with you.

BARTIROMO: Do you expect tax reform before the next election?

NORQUIST: I think the Republicans, both Senator Hatch in the Senate and the head of the Ways and Means Committee, Paul Ryan, will put forward a series of ideas that move toward fundamental tax reform.

I think it's very unlikely that the Democrats would allow it get through the Senate or that Obama would sign it.

BARTIROMO: We just spoke with House Speaker John Boehner. And, you know, I made the point that tax reform was one of those things that many people thought there was a lot of agreement on both sides of the aisle.

What were your observations to the Boehner comment on taxes?

NORQUIST: Well, when there's an agreement, the problem is that people in the Senate, Democrats in the Senate, see a bill that could pass, whether it's H1B visas or corporate income tax reform and they try and attach boat anchors to it, which then kill the bill. They view those easy to pass bills, bills you agree on, as hostages. That's why it won't happen until we have a very different president.

BARTIROMO: Unbelievable. So let's talk about what a tax reform package should look like.


BARTIROMO: What do you think would be best in terms of serving growth in the economy?

NORQUIST: Sure. We should go to full expensing for all business investment, rather than long depreciation schedules. It reduces the costs of capital, makes us more competitive.

The corporate income tax rate needs to come from 35 highest in the world down to 20 percent, which, when you add the average 5 percent state corporate income tax, makes us only average in competing w Europe.

But at least to 20 percent on the corporate side.

We should move toward a single rate tax on the individual side. The reason for that is a single rate tax, a flat tax, is difficult to raise.

I'm originally from Massachusetts. In Massachusetts, liberal Democrats in Massachusetts, by constitution, a single rate tax. It's 5.25.

And the reason is, even there, it's tough to raise taxes if you have to look everyone in the eye and say, I've got a good idea and you're all paying for it.


NORQUIST: When they can divide us into groups, that's when they can raise taxes with a progressive income tax.

BARTIROMO: No, that's a good way to put it. That's -- that's right.  It's a good analogy there.

Let me -- let me ask you about the corporate tax story, because, you know, if -- if you really have to see the implications of a complicated tax system, you look at corporate tax reform and there it is, because there are so many companies that have tens of billions -- hundreds of billions of dollars overseas...


BARTIROMO: -- that they refuse to bring back here, to -- to add that to create jobs here in America because of the tax story there.

But where -- how do you pay for it?

Thirty-five percent, you're saying, comes down to 20 percent.

Where does that revenue -- that replacement revenue come from?

NORQUIST: I think you look at places like Canada, which has dropped their rate down to below 20 percent. The growth itself brings in more revenue.

I should have added on what you had to do on corporate income tax is to go to territoriality. The rest of the world, except for like North Korea, has a territorial tax system. We have a worldwide one. We should say if you earn money in the United States as a company, we tax you. If you earn money in France, France taxes you. When you bring it back, that's good, not bad.


NORQUIST: We punish people for bringing money back to the United States. There's $2 trillion overseas American corporate profits which could come back tomorrow if we went to a territorial system. We should do that right away.

BARTIROMO: Yes, it's an amazing number, $2 trillion.


BARTIROMO: What's your assessment of the IRS right now?

NORQUIST: It's awful. It's incompetent. It's not doing its job. It whines it doesn't have enough money. Their budget has doubled in real terms, taking inflation into account, doubled since 1983. And they're whining that they don't have enough money.

They've got enough money to go harass Tea Party groups trying to set up shop. They have enough money to -- they allow people in the IRS to do what Hillary did, to take your personal data -- Hillary did state secrets - - your personal data and put it on their own personal Gmail accounts.

The Republicans in the House just passed a law to ban that. Hopefully it will pass the Senate, too.

It's a mess over there.

BARTIROMO: Unbelievable.

Grover, good to have you on the show.

Thanks so much.

NORQUIST: Hey, Maria, thank you very much.

BARTIROMO: Grover Norquist joining us.

Hillary Clinton kicked off her campaign one week ago.

So how is she faring so far and is taking her down the only thing the Republicans have in common?

Our panel is coming up on that, as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."


SHAWN: From America's news headquarters, I'm Eric Shawn. Here are some of the stories that are making headlines at this hour.

Sadly, ISIS strikes again, against Christians, releasing another gruesome video, claiming to show the slaughter of two different groups of Ethiopian Christians who were captured in Libya. The 29-minute video shows its group being held by apparent ISIS affiliates in eastern and southern parts of the country. That video then switches between footage of one group of captives being shot dead, the other group being beheaded on a beach just as they did to the Egyptian Christians two months ago.

Meantime, right off the coast of Libya, a major rescue operation is now underway after a boat carrying an estimated 700 migrants capsizes; 24 people so far are confirmed dead. Hundreds remain missing. Italy's coast guard says the ship may have capsized because migrants rushed to one side when they saw a cargo ship coming to its aid.

And I'll be back with Arthel Neville at noon Eastern with more news and the doctor as always are in, Drs. Siegel and Samadi join us for "Sunday Housecall" at 12:30 Eastern, two hours from now.

So for now, I'm Eric Shawn. Back to "Sunday Morning Futures" and Maria.

BARTIROMO: Thanks, Eric.

Hillary Clinton rolling out her much-anticipated presidential campaign this week. The former secretary of state already coming under fire for allegedly stacking events with political operatives and not taking any questions from reporters.

Want to bring in our panel, Ed Rollins, former principle White House adviser to President Reagan. He's He has been a long-time strategist to business and political leaders. He is a FOX News political analyst.

Judith Miller is adjunct fellow at The Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. She's a Pulitzer Prize winning author and journalist and a Fox News contributor.

Mary Kissel is a Wall Street Journal editorial board member.

Good to see everybody. Thanks very much for joining us.

Hillary kicked off one week ago. How's she doing?

ED ROLLINS, POLITICAL CAMPAIGN STRATEGIST: About the most lackluster kickoff I've ever seen in my life for someone who's had eight years to prepare for it. She's actually said nothing so far. She's contradicted herself. She talked about raising $2.5 million and then the next day she aid I'm going to have to do campaign finance reform. This is outrageous.  She walks in a restaurant and basically doesn't leave any money in the tip jar, talks about raising the wages of personal people, tax Wall Street for people making $20 million, and someone's going to go back and look at when she made $20 million, what did she pay her staff? So I didn't think it was a very -- it doesn't matter in the end, but it wasn't very --


BARTIROMO: That's the day she ordered the burrito bowl. That's what her campaign released, what she ordered.

How is she doing, Judy?

JUDITH MILLER, AUTHOR AND JOURNALIST: She got three separate stories on that in "The New York Times" and that's what she wants. She's trying to remake herself as new and interesting.

And it's interesting that the mainstream media is really giving her a pass. Ron Fournier (ph), who's an excellent analyst, said all she has to be is new and funny.

No, I think she has to answer some questions about how she's going to get the economy growing. She has to explain how she can be a champion of the people and yet make so much money and raise so much money. She's talking about her $2.5 billion campaign. I think she has to do more than that.

But I think the video worked. I think when you have the press running behind her Scooby van, she's off and running.


BARTIROMO: You think it's working?


MARY KISSEL, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: No, I think it's terrible.  She has to be effectively bubble wrapped to talk to normal people, and they aren't even normal people. They're political operatives, as you said in the intro.

She has a tough campaign because she has nothing to run on. She is the candidate of big government and identity politics. That is the Democratic Party of today. President Obama has pulled it very far to the left.

How can she be the candidate of the everyday person and have the same economic policies that hurt everyday people? The candidate of women and tout economic policies that hurt women?

BARTIROMO: So what are the economic policies that hurt women?

KISSEL: Well, for example, she talks about equal pay. This is just a giveaway to the trial bar. She talks about higher minimum wages. This throws people out of work. So there's tax policy, regulatory policy. You can just go right down the list.

So the campaign is terrible, not just because she's a terrible politician, which she is, she can't hold a candle to Bill, but because what she's trying to sell isn't sellable.

ROLLINS: And she can't be every person. At the end of the day, she's lived in a bubble for 35 years. She's been a first lady of Arkansas, first lady of the country, U.S. Senator. She obviously has qualifications. But at the end of the day, she cannot be everyman. She can't compete with a Rubio, who has a great story to tell and others in the Republican Party.

MILLER: I think she just has to distance herself enough from Barack Obama to suggest that she's going to be new and different. And I think equal pay is important to a lot of Americans and it sounds pretty good.

ROLLINS: There's one very important thing about distancing yourself from Obama. She's running for his third term, whether she likes it or doesn't like it. And when Bush won Reagan's third term, Reagan had a 54 percent approval rating and Bush got 54 percent of the vote.

You get the vote that Obama has, which is below 50 percent. She has to tie herself to Obama, a little separation here or there, but she cannot run away from him.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Now she has a record that she actually has to talk about.


BARTIROMO: Isn't that the hardest part of this? Because she's trying to come across as someone different from Obama, and yet she's been on his team.

MILLER: But she can separate herself on national security issues because she has a record there. She was the secretary of state.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was disastrous.

MILLER: She was the one pushing to arm the Syrian moderates when it would have mattered. She was the one who was always --


KISSEL: If she truly believed that, she should have resigned when the president said she wouldn't. She did the reset with Russia. She did the terrible Libyan intervention. She mishandled the Arab spring. She has to account for that.

BARTIROMO: She should have resigned, you're right, if she disagreed.

Let's look at what's coming up on "MediaBuzz" before we continue with our panel.

Howard Kurtz standing by in D.C.

Howie, good morning to you.

HOWARD KURTZ, HOST, "MEDIABUZZ": Good morning. We're going to look at the role of reporters in this Hillary Iowa media circus, including our own Ed Henry, chasing the van and worrying about what she had for lunch.

We're also going to do a segment on ESPN's Britt McHenry, she was the woman who was suspended for a week for delivering that tirade against this poor towing company attendant after her car got towed and making fun of her weight and her lack of education. It just made me cringe.

Was a one-week suspension enough? We're going to debate that as well.

BARTIROMO: Yes, what a story there. All right, Howie. We'll see you in about 20 minutes. We will be there.

The GOP field meanwhile expanding as candidates try to separate themselves from the pack this week in New Hampshire.

So who stood out in New Hampshire?

Are we a long ways off on a front runner? More on that with our panel as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."


BARTIROMO: Welcome back. The ranks of Republicans vying to be our next president growing quickly. More than a dozen declared and potential GOP hopefuls gathered in New Hampshire at the First in the Nation Leadership Summit, talking a little policy and a lot of Hillary Clinton.

Want to bring back our panel, Ed, Judy, and Mary.

One indication of this is what Rand Paul put on his website. He has, "liberty, not Hillary." Basically, looking for anybody out there who has any information about political donations to The Clinton Foundation.

So you got to ask yourself, OK, fine, he wants to get scoop on Hillary. That's OK.

But shouldn't he be focusing on where his platform is on his website?

ROLLINS: Oh, sure. And he will. Truth of the matter is there are 19 candidates who spoke before 600 active Republicans in Nashville yesterday and the day before. Probably three or four in the audience who are thinking about running, too. We've got an abundance of qualified people.

Why New Hampshire is important is Iowa is kind of an evangelical, very strong state for people like Huckabee and Santorum and others who have won there in the past and Walker will do well there.

This is a state that Democrats and independents can vote. It's an open primary. Someone like Jeb Bush has to do well there. Someone like Christie has to do well there. So you're going to see a lot more attention paid to New Hampshire this time than in recent history.

BARTIROMO: What was your take on the New Hampshire meeting, Judy?

MILLER: Well, I think that Jeb Bush impressed me in two respects.  One, he set the tone by saying basically he's not going to speak ill of his fellow Republicans because I think he understands, as the front runner or one of the front runners, that the most important thing right now is not for the Republicans to tear themselves up as they did the last time.

The second thing he did is he clearly signaled that he does not expect a coronation, which is the other charge about the Bushes. And I think that if he sets that kind of tone and they can adhere to it, New Hampshire will actually be very interesting.

BARTIROMO: And we did have a coronation with Hillary, by the way.

MILLER: We did.


KISSEL: I'm just impressed by how lively the debate is. This election is going to be about some very fundamental ideas.

What role do we want America to play in the world?

How do we want to structure health care?

Do we want choice in education?

Do we need tax reform?

You have candidates who are representing pretty much the entire spectrum of conservative thought on that stage. And I think hopefully what this process produces is the strongest possible candidate as a result of that. As Judy says, tearing themselves apart. No, that's actually a lively debate. It's good for the party and I think ultimately it will be good for the country.

BARTIROMO: Well, it's interesting you say that. Because even with John Boehner, I asked John Boehner, look, you said that all of the Republicans were going to get behind an alternative to ObamaCare.

Where does that stand?

Do we have a real alternative?

I know that they talk about repealing ObamaCare a lot.

ROLLINS: I think Republicans have come to the realization that it's going to be hard, as long as he's there, to basically alter it. It'll need to be fixed. It needs fixed desperately. The court may alter it in a few weeks here.

But at the end of the day, I think when you look at our field of candidates, we have many governors who have been elected to two terms and not necessarily just Republican states. We have several serious young senators for the future.

This is probably the strongest field since 1980 when Reagan won. And my sense, whoever comes out of this field will be very significant. Marco Rubio had a fantastic launch this week compared to Hillary's. And this is a dynamic young candidate who now has pulled even with Bush in his home state.

BARTIROMO: In Florida, yes.

ROLLINS: Which is very important because it's a winner-take-all state and a lot of delegates there. So he's an exciting young candidate for the future, as so will others be.

KISSEL: I think Rubio had an absolutely fantastic launch. He's got a lot of good ideas, particularly on foreign policy.

But just coming back to this idea, we're going to have a debate about ideas, you know, he's going to have a tough time defending his tax plan.

Will somebody like a Senator Rand Paul, when they get into the debates, attack him for that?

Will it be exposed?

He's going to have to defend those ideas. He says that he wants a big child tax credit, (INAUDIBLE) what Democrats do, it's just under a different name. They're handouts.


ROLLINS: You can't get 19 people --


ROLLINS: -- the only qualification the Constitution says, you have to live in the country 14 years, be born here, and be 35 years of age. You need a little bit more qualification than that. We have some very qualified people, but you can't have 19, 20 people in a debate.

MILLER: And this is going to be a long whittling process.

Can you sustain the kind of interest in this process without, once again, doing the kind of damage that was done the last time?

With the Republicans so split, I'm not sure that they can.

BARTIROMO: Is there anyone from the field that you think is best positioned to go up against Hillary and actually win?

MILLER: I know this is -- Ed will disagree with me. I still think it's Jeb Bush. I think he appeals to independents. I think he's in this more to the center, even though he's very conservative than other people.

And let's face it, he has name recognition. Bush v. Clinton is very well known.


ROLLINS: And I like Jeb Bush. I think he's a very fine governor, he's a very fine young man. And he may, of all this, be the candidate.  But there's a lot of opposition right today to another Bush in our party.  And I think you're going to see he's got to win this thing and he's got to win it clean. But it's going to be a long, hard battle for him.

KISSEL: I think a lot of these people could win because we finally have a class of candidates who can articulate conservative ideas, why is smaller government better, why do we need to be involved in the world.  Mitt Romney just couldn't do that. He ran on his biography. And now we have candidates actually running on solid platforms.


ROLLINS: And much stronger biographies. He was governor for four years. You have got governors who were governor for eight years. You've got Pataki, who was governor, who's not even viewed as a serious candidate, who was three terms here in New York. So you've got some very serious -- and a guy, John Kasich, who was on your show a couple weeks ago, governor of Ohio, is now basically giving serious talk to it and a very serious guy, so...

BARTIROMO: All right, real quick, President Obama suggesting a possible compromise with Iran on economic sanctions. We'll hear from the managing director of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, about lifting those sanctions, what that could mean for the global economy, and we'll get our panel to weigh in next on "Sunday Morning Futures."




CHRISTINE LAGARDE, MANAGING DIRECTOR, INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND:  Clearly, the gradual or rapid integration of Iran in the international trade, would be, number one, a boost to its own economy.

And number two, it would have an impact also on the -- on the oil sector and on the supply of oil around the world.

So I think, if anything, it would contribute to more recurrence, a supply effect on the oil price decline as we have seen it.


BARTIROMO: And that was my interview with managing director of the IMF, Christine Lagarde, at the beginning of their IMF spring meetings this week, talking about how lifting the sanctions in Iran could eventually not only just help Iran but help the world because it would lower oil prices.

Not a word on the nuclear talks, though, Mary?

KISSEL: No. And what she didn't say is that, of course, oil's a global commodity; it reacts to price. So if Iran isn't producing, we may produce more. So, set that aside, if she wants stability in oil markets, you don't want to empower a new Persian Empire, led by Iran, a state sponsor of terror. You don't want nuclear proliferation and, ultimately, more U.S. involvement in the Middle East.

I mean, you know, this is not a good thing for the global economy.


MILLER: Look, I think that this deal is in trouble. It's very clear it's in trouble. That's why the president, quote, "cooperated with Congress" on...

BARTIROMO: He said he would sign the Corker bill...

MILLER: Exactly.

We had -- before that, he -- it was "never; over my dead body."


Now he wants to be able to blame Congress for what is a deal that seems to be falling apart. And everything depends, as James Baker, that Republican guru, pointed out, on solidarity, among Christine Lagarde and her country and the allies who are negotiating the terms of the -- of the framework with the United States and Iran.

And these talks are going to resume. It is absolutely imperative that the allies support America in its demand that we not back off on sanctions, that we demand access to all Iranian suspect facilities, that we have snap- back provisions if Iran is caught cheating. These must be iron-clad demands.

Will Obama insist -- will he be able to mobilize the allies in supporting this basic agenda?

BARTIROMO: I doubt it. And, look, Boehner said there's not going to be a deal. I don't think there's going to be any deal.

ROLLINS: And -- and hopefully there's not a deal, from my perspective. I think these are bad guys. I think every country that has chaos in that part of the world, they're involved in it. You're going to give them more money; if you lift the sanctions, they're going to basically pump more oil, have a stronger economy and be able to basically do bad things all over the region, even more so.

BARTIROMO: Which is what we're seeing in Yemen right now.

ROLLINS: Absolutely. So my sense is, great, we don't want them to have a nuclear weapon; we need to use whatever we can to make sure they don't have that. But don't just basically walk away, thinking that they're going to be good guys all of a sudden. Because we -- they're going to...

MILLER: Oh, come on, Ed, nobody thinks they're going to be good guys. The issue is, can we verify an agreement that's signed? So far this agreement...

BARTIROMO: But they just said we can't have any verifying.

ROLLINS: We've never been able to verify any agreement we've ever done...

BARTIROMO: Not only that, but the -- one of the executives there in Iran said, no, there will be no U.N. inspectors coming in...


ROLLINS: You can't look at our bases; you can't look at our military.

KISSEL: This administration will do anything to get this deal done. We started from zero centrifuges and now we're into thousands. We wanted the IAEA to verify past work and they haven't done that yet. There was going to be staged-in sanctions relief; now we learn that the administration, just in these last days, may give them $50 billion of immediate relief -- a massive boost to their economy.

They will do anything to get this deal done. Secretary of State John Kerry wants a Nobel Peace Prize. The president wants a legacy. We are the ones who are going to suffer for this, as we get, as I said, the nuclear proliferation in the Middle East.

BARTIROMO: Garry -- Garry Kasparov was on this program a week ago. He said, "The president can do more damage to the United States in the next 20 months than he has in the last six years."

The one thing to watch is next, ladies and gentlemen. We're going to take a short break, and then our panel on what's most important in the weeks ahead, on "Sunday Morning Futures."


BARTIROMO: Back with the panel, on what's important ahead. What are you looking at, Ed?

ROLLINS: I'm watching how the president's losing the support of Democrats on both the Asia fast-track and on the -- obviously on the sanctions bill.


MILLER: I'm looking at the reopening of the negotiations in Iran under the cloud of the Russian sale of S-300 missiles to Iran and the Ayatollah's maximalist demands.

BARTIROMO: Yes, they've been saying no inspectors coming in. What about you, Mary?

KISSEL: I'm looking at the other side of what Ed just said. I'm looking at how Republicans are reacting to the prospect of fast-track trade authority and the Asian deal. It's good for the economy, but there's an anti-immigrant populist strain in the Republican Party. Watch out for that.

BARTIROMO: All right. That'll do it for us. Have a great Sunday, everybody. I'll see you tomorrow, Fox Business.

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