Sen. Barrasso talks Iran nuclear deal; Gen. Myers assesses ISIS strategy

This is a rush transcript from "Sunday Morning Futures," May 24, 2015. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MARIA BARTIROMO, HOST: Iran fighting transparency as six world powers resume talks toward a final nuclear deal.

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

Iran's supreme leader not wanting any international inspectors on his country's military sites. And we've heard this before. So, will any deal really hold up? I will talking with a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee momentarily about the bill that would give Congress a say.

Then the site of an eight-year battle during the Iraq war now in the hand offer ISIS. Former joint chiefs of staff chairman General Richard Myers on the fight and the strategy to defeat the terror group.

Plus, Hillary Clinton breaks her silence with the media, but lots of questions remain, especially on her emails. Our panel analyzes the latest on the 2016 race for the White House as we look ahead on Sunday Morning Futures.

Well, the supreme leader of Iran once again not seeing eye to eye with world leaders on a key part of a deal to curb the country's nuclear program. As the leaders resume talks with Iran this past week, Ayatollah Khamenei said he would not allow foreign inspectors on his military sites, something Iranian leaders have said before.

So, where do we stand as Congress awaits the president's signature on a bill that would give them a say on any final deal.

Senator John Barrasso is with me of Wyoming. He is the chairman of the Republican policy committee, a member of the foreign relations committee..

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

SEN. JOHN BARRASSO, R-WYO.: Thanks for having me back, Maria.

BARTIROMO: Would a deal hold up if Iran refuses to allow inspectors in?

BARRASO: Well, I don't think that it would. I'm not sure that the president would even agree to it, because let's face it a nuclear armed Iran makes the world less safe, less stable, less secure. And that speech he gave was to the graduates of their military institution in Iran just this past week.

To me an agreement has to be verifiable, enforceable, accountable, and that means we need to have inspections anywhere, anytime, not just when the ayatollah says it's OK by appointment.

BARTIROMO: And you have been raising this question now for some time pending a nuclear deal. But at the end of the day, if he says no, how do we stop any deal from going forward when we know it is not just about the U.S. but also about the other five world powers?

BARRASSO: Well, it has to do also specifically with the sanctions that Congress has put on Iran. And, let's face it, Iran wants the money. And I don't believe they want it for roads or hospitals or schools, I believe they want it for more terror, because that's what we know they support with Hamas, with Hezbollah, with the Houthis. All of those are areas where Iran supports terror. And I want to say no sanction relief from Congress at least is going to occur unless this is a deal that meets the requirements that prevents Iran from getting a nuclear weapon in the first place.

That's where President Obama started this. He said, we have to stop Iran from developing a nuclear weapon.

BARTIROMO: But, senator, if we know that Iran is the disruptor in the neighborhood, and we know that Iran is the disruptor who is actually helping other terrorist groups like Hezbollah, like Hamas, why are we even having this conversation? So much energy and time generated on this potential deal. Why are we continuing this when we know what was just said?

BARRASSO: Well, you are absolutely right. And this is one of the most consequential parts of a president's foreign policy. But we know that the president has failed with foreign policy with the reset with Russia, with the red line in Syria, with the pivot to China, all of those things are areas of President Obama's failures in foreign policy. I think he is so desperate for any deal with Iran that my concern is that he is going to go for a bad deal rather than say no to any deal at all.


Senator, stay with us. A lot to talk with you this morning, Senator Barrasso. But first, just how far apart are the two sides in these talks over a nuclear deal? Fox News' senior correspondent Eric Shawn with that angle. Good morning to you, Eric

ERIC SHAWN, FOX NEWS SENIOR CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Maria. And good morning everyone.

You know we are told that a framework agreement will stop Iran from building a nuclear bomb. But there now seems to be gaps large enough to drive that proverbial Mack truck right through it.


ERNEST MONIZ, SECRETARY OF ENERGY: We think the access and transparency is unprecedented. And the additional protocol is an example of a forever agreement in what we have negotiated.


SHAWN: Well, the Obama administration insists the framework agreement will curb Iran's nuclear quest. Critics caution, you have to read the fine print.

And Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamanei, who will have the final say on any deal seems, to be piling on even more provisions, refusing as we say, to let the United Nations nuclear inspectors visit military sites, or even interview Iran's nuclear scientists.

That means those suspected sites like the Parchin Military Complex where Iran is thought to have conducted nuclear explosive research are off limits.

Khamenei's nuclear adviser Ali Akbar Velayati was blunt, saing, quote, they want to visit some of our center, which include some of our military centers. Military officials are not allowed to let any person investigate the defense systems of the Islamic Republic of Iran. These matters are part of the security of the Islamic Republic of Iran and such permission has not been granted by the commander-in-chief of the Iranian armed forces.

However, they constantly repeat they should see our centers.'

Well, the UN was given some limited access in the past. Critics have long said that without the ability for full inspections, any place, any time, any agreement will be worthless.


JOHN BOLTON, FMR. U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED NATIONS: It almost doesn't matter whether there is a formal relief for the sanctions. I think the president is determined to sign this deal. He said it is a legacy comparable to Obamacare.

Iran is on the way to nuclear weapons whether this deal is signed or not.


SHAWN: Well, as Khamanei put it, they want to interrogate our dear children. We know his brazen defiance comes as the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency continues to say that Iran is not fully cooperating.  The agency's head says they have identified what he calls the right place to visit at the Parchin military site, but that the Iranians still refuse to let those inspectors in -- Maria.

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

More now with Republican Senator John Barrasso of Wyoming.

And Senator, give us the timeline. The House has passed the bill for Congress to review Iran's nuclear deal. What happens next? When can we know for sure that, in fact, Congress will stop any wrong deal from moving forward?

BARRASSO: And that passed with 99 votes in the United States senate as well. So it is veto-proof margins for the president. We will have a month to review the deal if the president signs on to a deal. And if the Iranians agree.

But you look at this belligerent activity by the Ayatollah. I mean, it is almost like he is saying, we're going to get it no matter what. You cannot stop us.

Well, Congress is prepared to say, this is a bad deal. And we will vote that it is a bad deal this summer when we get a chance to really look at it if it does allow Iran to get a nuclear weapon. Because then they would be a nuclear as well as an industrial and a military powerhouse in the Middle East, which adds incredible instability to the area.

We know, and I was in Saudi Arabia earlier this year, they are going to want nuclear weapons. There is going to be a nuclear arms race in the Middle East if Iran gets a nuclear weapon. And you are going to see it in Egypt, in Turkey, in the Emirates. All of those people will want that.

So, Congress will have a say this summer when we get a look at the specific deals if the president agrees to a deal.

But it is sure sounding to me like Iran, with its belligerence, is going to make it harder and harder for us to say, hey, this is a good deal. I don't think it will be.

BARTIROMO: Well, let's face it. I mean, the implications of any deal will have to be dealt with with the next leader of the free world. I mean, this is going to land on the desk of the next president in terms of the ramifications of any deal.

BARRASSO: And we know what drove the Iranians to the bargaining place in the first place were the sanctions. Sanctions on their ability. We froze assets. We didn't allow them to export oil. All of those things hit them in the pocketbook. And that's why they are so desperate to try to relieve the sanctions. And I don't want the president to play into that hand, because it is all about the money and I know that that money will not be put to good use, it will be put to the use for terror. They continue to be a nation that is a sponsor of terrorism.  They are doing it all across the Middle East. You see it right now with what they are doing in Yemen.

And I have concerns with ISIS and their efforts there. They are on the ground. We are running air missions, bombing missions, from the air support. But -- and I met with the Iraqi prime minister about that. The concern is that Iraq could actually ultimately defeat ISIS, but Iran will have taken over the country, because it will be their military, their boots on the ground controlling the ground.

BARTIROMO: That's a really good point.

And by the way, ISIS at this point controlling 50 percent of Iraq -- of Syria, rather, 50 percent of Syria at this point ISIS is controlling.

Let me move on to the trade bills on the table right now, senator. Because when you talk to business leaders, they feel that these trade deals are going to really move the needle in terms of business and the economy for American companies. What's your take and why the holdup?

BARRASSO: Well, I support the trade deals, voted in favor of it. I actually am working with the president on this. There is a bipartisan group. The president has mentioned the need for this in the last five State of the Union addresses.

It's been the Democrats and Harry Reid who has been blocking it. I hope we get it passed. When it comes to international trade, the question is, who is going to write the rules, the United States or China? And my vote is the United States.

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

BARRASSO: Thanks so much for having me, Maria.

BARTIROMO: We'll see you soon, Senator Barrasso, joining us.

ISIS taking a pair of key cities as they look to spread their radical message across the Middle East. We will talk with the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Richard Myers, my guest, coming up, as we talk about finally defeating this terror group.

Then, remember, you can follow me on Twitter @mariabartiromo @sundayfutures. Send me a tweet. Let us know what you'd like to hear on the program, as we look ahead this morning on "Sunday Morning Futures."


BARTIROMO: Welcome back. A major blow dealt to the American-backed coalition in the fight against ISIS, the terror army taking control of the key Iraqi city of Ramadi.

And according to human rights watchdog groups, the terrorists overran the historic city of Palmyra as well, in Syria. President Obama called the loss of Ramadi a "tactical setback" but says he thinks we are not losing the battle against the terrorism group.

Now the race is on to train moderate Syrian forces outside the country in places like Jordan to help fight ISIS, the U.S. also sending 2,000 anti- tank rockets to Iraq, as well as training security forces not only to fight but to call in air strikes when needed.

General Richard Myers is with me. He is the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. And, sir, it is wonderful to have you on the program today.


BARTIROMO: Can you characterize our efforts to degrade this terrorist group right now? How are we doing?

MYERS: I can't get in the way of General Alston, who's the CENTCOM commander, who's a terrific thinker and strategist, and -- and General Dempsey, and so forth. And I think, probably, right now, as we're talking, they are working hard to come up with an overall strategy to deal with this. I think the notion that we can rely on Iraqi forces in Iraq, for instance, to deal with ISIS by themselves doesn't look like that's playing out very well.

So where else can we help besides with their power and besides with training and mentoring? What else could or should we be doing? That would be the big question. And I -- I don't have the answer to that. My inclination, of course, is that we probably need to put more effort towards this. Because every time they have a victory like this, that's more people that want to sign up for this -- the train they're on, the ISIS train, more people wanting to get on that train and -- and fight. And that's not a good thing.

BARTIROMO: Some of that equipment that the Americans gave to -- or lent in the security training program to the Iraqis, the Iraqis were overrun. So some of that equipment was just delivered. And now ISIS has it.

MYERS: Yeah, the same thing happened in Mosul. They -- they captured a lot -- ISIS captured a lot of equipment that had been sold or given to the Iraqi army. And so, you know, when you leave your position and you run, that's the problem.

But that goes back to the whole governance issue in Iraq. And is the government seen by the military as something or somebody or an organization they want to fight for. And then you mix in the sectarian issues.

So I -- you know, the president said it was a tactical defeat. And I think General Dempsey said words to that effect as well. And I think, on one level, it certainly was. On a political level, in terms of Sunni-Shia relations inside Iraq, I think it's probably a little bit more problematic.

BARTIROMO: Yeah, I mean, this is the point because, you know, this is a key Iraqi city. U.S. troops fought here in Ramadi for -- for eight years. So it's -- it has a lot of symbolism?

MYERS: Yeah, I think, you know, when you look at the Maliki government and their inability to reconcile between Sunni and Shia, and now we have a new government and then we have this incident, there are, I think, a lot of disenfranchised Sunnis, or Sunnis that feel disenfranchised, that are going to have to be brought back on side if Iraqi forces are going to be successful against ISIS in the country.

And that's the -- I think that's the big concern. I know all the leadership knows that.


MYERS: But that's the big concern.

BARTIROMO: And then there is Al Qaeda. So we get this big data dump. The reaction -- your reaction to the 100-plus bin Laden documents that were made public this past week?

MYERS: Absolutely fascinating, I think, to show thinking by Al Qaeda, their leadership and other elements of Al Qaeda, and the fact that there was still plotting going on for, at least in Osama bin Laden's mind, big attacks planned against the West and particularly the U.S.

I think it goes to what a lot of people have been saying for a long time. This threat has not gone away. Whatever form it takes, whether it's ISIS or Al Qaeda or other forms as well -- the Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, you know, they are always planning; they're always strategizing. Sometimes we get insight into it; sometimes we don't have insight into it.

But you can be assured, they're plotting, and what they are plotting is something that's not good for the United States.

BARTIROMO: All at a time that we're negotiating with Iran over their nuclear ambitions?

MYERS: Well, yes. And I -- you know, it reminds me of our -- the 1994 agreement with North Korea, that we give them fuel oil if they give up their -- their nuclear weapons.


MYERS: And it turned out that they never abided by the agreement. They kept developing their nuclear capability. But we were ready a few years later to celebrate this big breakthrough in diplomacy with North Korea. And they were reminded by then Secretary of Defense Bill Cohen and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at that time that, listen, you know, it's not just nuclear weapons with Korea; they've got chemical and biological and lots of missiles, and they can rain, you know, destruction down on South Korea and a lot of U.S. and allied facilities in the region.

There's a lot more to worry about than the nukes. And I think the same thing is true in Iran.

BARTIROMO: I think that's such an important point.

MYERS: I mean, they're -- they sponsor state terrorism. They're doing lots of activities in the region, whether it's Syria or Lebanon or Yemen now. They're -- Iraq. They are very, very active in not a helpful way, not as a positive international actor. And so the nuclear part is a piece of it, but there's a lot more they should be held accountable for, in my opinion.

BARTIROMO: General, great to have you on the program. Thanks so much for your insights.

MYERS: Thanks, Maria.

BARTIROMO: We'll see you soon, General Richard Myers, joining us.

And from the Mideast to Asia, she is a major player in one of the world's most powerful economies, one of China's most successful real estate moguls, Zhang Xin, on the market and her investments in the United States, next, as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."


BARTIROMO: China's economy has begun to slow down from the peak levels of a few years ago at the same time as the stock market in China has begun to heat up in a big way. A lot of money moving into Chinese stocks.

I want to talk about that and the impact on the rest of the world right now with my next guest, Zhang Xin is the co-founder and CEO of SOHO China.  That is China's largest office property developer with 60 million square feet developed in Beijing and Shanghai.

Good to see you. Thanks so much for joining us, Xin.


BARTIROMO: Good morning to you.

Let me ask you, first, about what you are seeing in China in terms of the economy. We know the growth has slowed down. From the U.S.' standpoint, we're wondering is it the engine of growth for the world that it was just a few years ago?

ZHANG: It still is the main engine of growth for the world but it is certainly also slowing down. We are used to seeing double-digit growth.  The days of 14 percent GDP growth and now it's slowing down; last year it is was 7.5 and now they are forecasting seven percent. And IMF even came out and said it is 6.5 percent. So, still, a remarkable growth. But it is certainly slowing.

BARTIROMO: I want to ask you about the U.S. and what you are seeing here.  I know you invested in the GM Building in New York, Park Avenue Plaza in New York. Where else are you looking at investing on a personal level or at SOHO China in terms of opportunities?

ZHANG: We've looked at the U.S. real estate when the financial crisis hit.

BARTIROMO: Back in '08?

ZHANG: Back in '08. So it was good timing. Then, we saw a lot of value in these top quality assets. Today, the prices are high because of all the QEs, not just in the United States but also Europe and Asia, everywhere, all the governments are printing money.

So the money is easily flowing into the best quality assets. Manhattan's best iconic building certainly attracts the most money. And so pricing wise, it is very, very high. While the U.S. economy is still growing at 2.5 percent, in Europe, we are seeing asset prices just as high. And the economy is not even growing as much.

BARTIROMO: Do you think it is partly because of the strong dollar? Is that what is doing it in the U.S.?

ZHANG: It is also the strong dollar. The strong dollar is propelled by growth and also the QE.

BARTIROMO: What is it going to take to get you more interested? A big selloff?

Do you think we are going to see prices come down?

ZHANG: No, I don't see that either. There is so much money floating there. They are not going to other areas. They are going to these -- a lot of money chasing after a few assets.

It is not like assets across the board are growing as much in pricing but the top ones grow a lot higher. The price has gone up a lot more than the average ones. So I think that will continue to be the case. When your borrowing rate is so low, people borrow to buy buildings, when you borrow so low and little return from the buildings is good enough.

BARTIROMO: You have this history having this front row seat in what's gone on in China, even from when you were a young girl, growing up under Mao.

How have things changed?

ZHANG: Oh, that has changed a lot.

BARTIROMO: Tell us about it.

ZHANG: We grew up with nothing under Mao. Cities had very little. We all had very little. We all dressed the same. We spoke the same language.  Those were the days. And so really the last 20 years is where we saw everything change.

We dressed differently, spoke differently, lived differently. You see Chinese travel around the world. You probably see Chinese coming to America to shop a lot. But 20 years ago, we had none of that.

BARTIROMO: You have also seen increasing numbers in terms of women billionaires, women independence, women freedom.

Characterize that for us. You, yourself, have been able to become this incredibly successful business woman globally.

ZHANG: Well, interesting enough, it is Mao, there a lot of bad things to be said about him but one thing he did great was for women, to liberate women. So Mao said, women can raise half the sky.

So growing up, I see my mother, my mother's friends. No, mothers don't work. Everybody went out to work. So men and women earned the same, dressed the same, looked the same. And but one thing was that there was always a defense of everybody works.

So there is no such thing as women don't go out to work and stay at home.  And I think that continues. That trend continues with China's open doors.  Women naturally find more space in private sectors. And so that's why you see a lot of self-made successful business women.

BARTIROMO: Yes. It is really impressive. Zhang, great to talk with you.  Thanks so much for joining us.

ZHANG: Thank you.

BARTIROMO: All right. Up next, Hillary Clinton breaks her silence over a series of recent scandals and going on the record.

But are these controversies doing anything to stop her momentum? The panelists here will begin there as we look ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."  Stay with us.


ARTHEL NEVILLE, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: This is a Fox News alert. I'm Arthel Neville.

New information on the protests in Cleveland following the acquittal of police officer Michael Brelo in the shooting deaths of two unarmed black suspects in 2012.

Now the chief of police saying a short time ago that 71 people have been arrested overnight because they, quote, crossed the line.

Most of the protests have been very peaceful after the verdict was announced yesterday.

And a startling assessment made by Defense Secretary Ash Carter on Iraq's armed forces. He says they showed no will to fight during the fall of Ramadi last week, adding that the U.S. is trying to encourage them to engage ISIS more directly.

Government troops and allied militia say they are planning a counter offensive to take back Ramadi.

I'm Arthel Neville, I'll see you again at noon eastern alongside Greg Jarrett.

BARTIROMO: Welcome back. Well, it finally happened after 28 days, some 40,150 minutes, Hillary Clinton finally took questions from the press. The former secretary of state and Democratic presidential candidate shrugging off a few questions tossed at her on the email controversy in which she insisted they are released as well as foreign donations to the Clinton Foundation.

Despite the recent scandals, Mrs. Clinton does not seem to be using steam, traveling to Iowa, New Hampshire and Chicago, Illinois last week.

We want to bring in our panel to talk more about it. Ed Rollins is former principle White House adviser to President Reagan. He has been a longtime strategist to business and political leaders.

Judith Miller is adjunct fellow at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. She's a Pulitzer Prize-winning author and journal.

And Michael Goodwin is with us today, columnist for the New York Post.

All three are Fox News contributors.

Good to see everybody. Thanks very much.

ED ROLLINS, FOX NEWS POLITICAL ANALSYT: And two Pultizer Prize winners on this stage.

BARTIROMO: Two Pulitzer Prize winners on this table. Thank you so much.  Honored to be with you both.

What did you think about Hillary finally -- I mean, I didn't like the way she handled Ed Henry, frankly.

ROLLINS: Well, I think five questions is not a press conference. I think she has been in this race now for at least 30 days, 45 days I think. She has not talked to a major reporter one-on-one. You know, she is basically ducking and dodging. And I wouldn't call this a press conference.

BARTIROMO: Is it working, though, for her, Judy?

JUDITH MILLER, MANHATTAN INSTITUTE FOR POLICY RESEARCH: It is working for her among Democrats. It is the independents that she is losing and it is affecting her super PAC money. We've now seen that the expectations of what she's raised are actually way below what she is raising, has only $5 million, according to the Wall Street Journal, in hard commitments.

BARTIROMO: Well, that's interesting.

So, then it is not working?

MILLER: Right. I don't think it is working at the level she needs it to work.

BARTIROMO: What do you think, Michael?

MICHAEL GOODWIN, NEW YORK POST: Well, look, I think that she has been hiding from the press because she feels that the press is too tough on her and therefore she will have these canned, scripted events where the press photographs her sitting with ordinary, Iowan voters supposedly, of course they are hand-picked.

But on the other hand, I think it does work in the sense that the headlines out of these stories were she speaks, not what she said, but just that she answered questions.

And then quickly, on the email release, of course she wants them released.  She sanitized them. It's the ones she deleted that are probably the more interesting ones.

BARTIROMO: I find this really extraordinary, because it is not just about her talking to the press about the email scandal, about the Clinton Foundation and donations there and conflicts of interest, it is about what is her feeling about ISIS? What would she do with with Vladimir Putin in Russia? What about the economic stories of America, the entitlements. So, all of these issues no one has any idea where she stands on that.

ROLLINS: The most fundamental question of all is why is she running other than an entitlement. And what am I going to do that is different than my husband did or the present president did? What is my vision for the future? And if you don't have an agenda that you start talking about in the course of your campaign, you are not going to be very effective.

MILLER: No, I think she thinks she has lots of time to do that. And she is alone. So, all of the questions are going to be really directed at her.  And she wants to spread things out to keep a little drama.

BARTIROMO: Oh, so you think she will answer these questions.

MILLER: Eventually.

BARTIROMO: She just feels like she has got the time to do it?

MILLER: Exactly.


GOODWIN: Well, look, I think there's also, as Ed says, the entitlement sense of her campaign. That she is going to be the nominee. She is a celebrity. She doesn't have to behave in the way a normal candidate does.  Let the others deal with the issues.

It is me. I am here. I show up. I wave and I make news.

MILLER: The Angelina Jolie of politics?


And meanwhile, Martin O'Malley says he will announce he is going to be running. He is going to announce at the end of the month apparently. Is that going to take any bloom off the rose here?

ROLLINS: He is a very capable governor. And he was the mayor of Baltimore for eight years. A lot of issues he could talk about. But he is not going to be a viable candidate. And he has been very much in the Clinton camp for many years, so maybe he is running for vice president.

But I think the key thing here as we talked on the show, there's going to be six Democrat debates. She is going to have to stand up there with Bernie Sanders, who is so far to the left, he is a socialist, obviously, Jim Webb is a very serious military guy, and O'Malley. So, there's a lot of issues she will be debated on, and she is not a great debater.

BARTIROMO: Interesting. Six Democratic debates. And I am thinking, and I am thinking who are the debaters. I know you just named them. But...

GOODWIN: Who is going to watch?

BARTIROMO: I mean, these guys have courage going in the field against her.  Because I don't know that the Dems are going to like that very much.

MILLER: He raised $1,800 in speeches for Bernie Sanders as opposed to the Clintons $25 million.

ROLLINS: The good news is he's a socialist and all my New York Democrat friends can actually vote for socialist besides de Blasio.


BARTIROMO: That would be good.

Maybe he can be mayor of New York?

ROLLINS: Could be.

So, I mean, the field. Let's talk about the field for a second. You have got Hillary in one corner and you have got a whole host in the GOP corner.  Is it too many, again, and will the GOP basically trip over themselves because we're not understanding...

ROLLINS: That potential is there. There are several serious candidates who have not announced yet. Governor Kasich was in New York talking to people, was on Fox the other night, met with people around here. He will be a very serious candidate if he gets in and he is thinking in terms of, can raise the money? He'll announce -- this is a guy who was chairman of the budget committee, 16 years in the armed services committee. He is probably the most capable Republican that we have in all facets.

Governor Perry will basically emerge in spite of his brain freeze that he had last time. He's a very serious candidate. The problem is our debates are going to be narrowed to ten. And we have got 20 people running and the Donald Trumps of the world and those people have more name ID and they'll be in those debates and some of the serious people may not be in debates in the initial stage.

BARTIROMO: How do you think it plays out, Michael?

GOODWIN: Well, look, I think it's too much of a good thing. I think there are a lot of good, solid candidates in this group. But there are just too many. And so this idea of cutting them down for the debates, as Ed says, is sure to cause lots of controversy, sure to be a self-fulfilling prophecies as to who will emerge with some strength?

So, it is a problem that I think will give Hillary an advantage for a long time.

BARTIROMO: Yeah, so the question becomes, who will face off Hillary Clinton?

We're going to take a short break and bring that up.

As we mentioned, the GOP field of 2016 candidates set to expand over the next couple of weeks. Our panel looking at that as well as this big data dump.  What did we learn with Usama bin Ladin from all of the information collected? That's next as we look ahead on Sunday Morning Futures.


BARTIROMO: Welcome back. The field of GOP candidates running for the White House next year stands at six but at least 10 others are either expected to announce their intentions or are exploring an opportunity.

Who is the best position to take the nomination at this point?

We bring back our panel, Ed Rollins, Judy Miller and Michael Goodwin.

What do you think? At the end of the day, I know it's hard to --


ROLLINS: A year from now, when it is May of next year, I will be able to tell you exactly.


ROLLINS: At this point in time, I think there are five or six very serious people in this race. You can't count Bush out in spite of the fact he has had a lousy couple of weeks. He will have an enormous sum of money. He's been through the and the game is not going to get over quick. It's going to get drawn out. So states like California, New York, New Jersey, that traditionally don't matter in the nominating process or the general electorate process this time can matter because they are late.

At the end of the game, you may need to get those -- I think the crowded field is going to keep anybody early on from being a winner.

BARTIROMO: The question now to all candidates and the media is, would you have gone into Iraq if you knew now what we -- if you knew then what we now know?

The other question to ask Hillary, is, should we have pulled out of Iraq 100 percent now that we know that ISIS has taken control and taken all the American weaponry?

MILLER: That's the nightmare question for her and I think it's an easier question for someone like Rubio to answer, who distinguished himself this week by actually defending Jeb Bush and saying, he just misheard the question. Of course, he was right in terms of his answer. I think that's a good place for Rubio to be.

I think it will be very hard for Hillary Clinton to say what we all know now, which is clearly the decision to pull out totally was catastrophic.

BARTIROMO: It really was. There are questions for Hillary around Benghazi which will likely come up.

Michael, do you agree with Ed on the 2016 field, in terms of who might be the real runner-up?

GOODWIN: Sure, sure. I think there are a number who will survive the first four primaries, the caucus in Iowa and then three primaries. I think it will still be a manageable field going forward after that.

But just to the impact of Benghazi and ISIS and all of that, look, I think they are going to be bad foreign policy headlines for the next -- until the election, with China, Russia, of course. The Islamic State. So I think that she is going to have a lot to answer for during that time.

For the Republicans, it is kind of a free shot. She is part of the Obama administration. She is seeking effectively a third term. This is a huge burden on her all the way through.

BARTIROMO: Look, this past week, obviously, we got this huge data dump.  We know now that ISIS is controlling 50 percent of Syria. They have taken Ramadi and so now we get all of this information that they have been sitting on for three years about Osama bin Laden.

What did we learn?

MILLER: We have learned a lot about him. The most important thing I learned was how absolutely operational he was. We are all talking about what he read. What interested me was that he even gave instructions such as do not pay advances on salaries to Al Qaeda people.

He was deeply in the weeds in terms of managing this very top-down but decentralized organization. I think we have taken our eyes off of Al Qaeda. It, too, has gained territory in Iraq and Syria.

BARTIROMO: -- so obsessed with attacking America.

ROLLINS: That's the point I was going to make. He said, don't grab turf, don't create states. Go after America. Remember, America is the enemy.  Attack their embassies, attack their entities. My sense is that ISIS now is collecting turf and it is going to be very hard, in spite of the administration's promise, the Marines and the U.S. Army took the biggest hits the first time they went into battle 10 years ago to regain this province. We had 12,000-15,000 troops there that we were the best fighting men.

It was a six, eight-week battle. That isn't going to happen again. ISIS is going to control that for a long time, combining with Syria, what have you.  I think they are going to continue to expand.

BARTIROMO: The other thing is we have been doing these airstrikes since last year, November or October or so. And without coordination on the ground. Mike Baker from the CIA has said, earlier, we can't have just airstrikes alone.

So even though we continue to hear different advice for the president, he is not listening.

GOODWIN: I saw a headline, it said the administration to review ISIS strategy.

What is the strategy? Do we even have one? I think if you go back to when this began, it was essentially over the decapitation on video of Americans.  Until that moment, America wanted nothing to do with it.

Overnight, the polls slipped. So I think what President Obama has done is the minimum necessary to give the public the impression he is doing something when in fact it is more of a political strategy than it is a military one.

ROLLINS: He likes to push the button on the drones. But as we saw this week with former Defense Secretary, CIA Director Gates saying, we don't have any strategy. Jack King, whom we all love, who was right there at the beginning, said it's a disaster would have passed today. In my sense, it will continue to be a disaster. The airstrikes, all you have to do is wait for a sandstorm and that's when we attack.

MILLER: The place where one-third of American forces fought and died to fall so easily into ISIS' hands is truly just heartbreaking and disgraceful for the administration.

BARTIROMO: That is Ramadi.

All right. We will take a short break and we return to politics. The pack of GOP contenders getting a good vibe from voters.

What is different this time around that is giving Republicans some confidence?

Also I want to check the polls.

What are the polls saying right now?

Plus, is a bigger field better? So far, the only Democrats are Hillary Clinton and Senator Bernie Sanders. We'll break down the numbers. We're looking ahead on "Sunday Morning Futures."



BARTIROMO: Welcome back. New polling numbers out, showing, while the GOP field may be crowded, overall Republican voters appear satisfied with the quality of candidates. Fifty-seven percent have an "excellent" or "good" impression of the group, according to the Pew research latest survey. That's way up from 2011, before Mitt Romney won the nomination, or back in 2007, when it was Senator John McCain leading the party.

We're back with our panel, Ed, Judy and Michael. Your observation of these poll numbers?

ROLLINS: Well, first of all, you've got an extraordinary, talented group of -- you've got governors who have been elected two, three, times, in different states. You have a variety -- and big states -- blue states. You have some young, dynamic senators. I think the party really has a great, great field. The problem is narrowing it down and letting voters get their opportunity to vote on it. And the polls obviously are indicative of that.

The people, like as I said, like Kasich -- Kasich's very widely known in Ohio, probably not known nationally; Governor Perry, widely known in Texas, not so widely known in the rest of the country. So they'll get known as the campaign goes on.

GOODWIN: I think one of the crucial questions at the end of this will be enthusiasm for that candidate. Those numbers are fine, but they're not great, 57 percent. And, of course, if the nominee is a centrist, you're going to lose some of the conservative enthusiasm and vice versa. So I think that is going to be the ultimate test for the general election.

MILLER: I think this is starting so early that these numbers really...

BARTIROMO: It will change a lot?

MILLER: Yeah, exactly. And they don't mean very much to...

BARTIROMO: What about the numbers on the Dem side?

I mean, it feels like the Clinton Foundation has had some impact. What's your take, in terms of the donations going into the Clinton -- and, by the way, the Clinton foundation, you know, I mean, I've been there. I've, you know, interviewed tons of people there, and, you know, it's not about, necessarily, CGI, Clinton Global Initiative. It's more about the fact that she was secretary of state and whether or not the question of whether or not policy decisions were changed.

GOODWIN: Yeah, the question of a quid pro quo for the donations, the speeches, the whole megillah, particularly when she was secretary of state. I think, for her, the fundamental issue is the sense of trustworthiness. And polls have shown repeatedly across the country that a majority, or near a majority, in all the key swing states, do not trust her, do not think she's honest. That's a very hard hill to climb, and we see it in her negatives. Her national negatives are about equal with her national positives.

These are fundamental questions about her authenticity that I think she's going to have to address, but it's a hard thing to change.

BARTIROMO: What do you think, Ed?

ROLLINS: I've always said that I don't think there's a Republican as strong as the field may be who can beat her head to head. I think she can beat herself. And I think this is all part of the trail that reminds people of what went on in the Clinton first term. She's not separated herself from any of that.

And I think, to a certain extent, if this continues -- the foundation right today is living off of its endowment. They're not out raising money, so you can't tell whether there's an impact. But there will be an impact, and they've done great things. They've done some meaningful things. But it's also been, kind of, a slush fund for the Clinton (inaudible) that's been out there.

MILLER: And I think O'Malley's entry into the race is actually a bet that, at some point, she's going to falter, just as she did the last time when Obama beat her unexpectedly...


MILLER: ... and that he may benefit from that.

BARTIROMO: It's got to be -- I think that's a great point, Judy, because the fact is, you know, you wouldn't see anybody else entering the race because that's -- the Democrats stick together. That's the difference.

ROLLINS: You've got one.

BARTIROMO: You've got one, Bernie Sanders.



MILLER: He loves -- Ed loves Bernie Sanders.

ROLLINS: I do love Bernie Sanders. I wish he was my -- your nominee.

BARTIROMO: All right. You've got one.


ROLLINS: John Kerry is talking to people -- John Kerry is desperate to run for president again, and if anything happens to her and she has to get out of the race -- it could be a health issue; it could be a whole variety of things -- John Kerry will step in. I promise you that.

BARTIROMO: But he's not going to do it now?

ROLLINS: No, no. Absolutely not.

BARTIROMO: Yeah. And everything, for his popularity, is right on that Iran deal?


BARTIROMO: I mean, that's -- that's going to make or break.


MILLER: Well, and that deal is in bigger trouble this week than it was in the previous weeks, as the Ayatollah digs in and stacks up the number of conditions and things he won't accept. It's going to be very hard for the administration to pull this one off.

BARTIROMO: Let's not forget, it's six countries. It's not just about the U.S.

MILLER: Exactly.

BARTIROMO: Will a deal go through even if Ayatollah says, "Look, no inspectors in my country?"

MILLER: Look, I think that the -- Joe Biden and John Kerry, president, have made some promises, inspections anywhere, any time. I don't see how they get out of that, or, he says, there will be no deal.

BARTIROMO: All right. Still to come, the one thing to watch for the week ahead, on "Sunday Morning Futures" with our panel, next.


BARTIROMO: And we're back with our panel. The one big thing to watch for the week ahead. Ed Rollins?

ROLLINS: The fast track, which looks like it's going to get to the Senate...

BARTIROMO: The trade deal?

ROLLINS: Trade deal. It's going to be up to Nancy Pelosi. Nance Pelosi -- is she going to basically do what her members want, which is kill it, or is she going to do what the president wants, try and get it through?

BARTIROMO: Big decision. Judy, what are you watching?

MILLER: I am a journalist; I'm an independent journalist, so I'm watching Jason Rezaian's trial in Tehran which opens this coming week. And The Washington Post executive editor is pleading for a visa so that he can, or someone from the paper, can go watch.

BARTIROMO: Wow, that is interesting. Go ahead, Michael. What are you...

GOODWIN: I'm watching for the continuing developments in the investigation into the Clinton Foundation. I think that all the major news organizations are looking closely. They've all got teams working on this. Somewhere, if there is a mother lode, I think it changes the dynamics of the race.

BARTIROMO: All right. I'm watching the GDP. The GDP report's out on Friday. It was a horrible first quarter. We'll see what this GDP reports says.

That will do it for "Sunday Morning Futures." Thank you to our panel. Thank you for watching.

I'm Maria Bartiromo. I'll see you tomorrow on "Opening Bell" on the Fox Business Network.

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