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Guests: Clinton, Lindsey Graham, Michele Bachmann

By Fox News Sunday, Fox News Sunday - October 23, 2011

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Special Guests: Secretary Hillary Clinton, Sen. Lindsey Graham, Rep. Michele Bachmann

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The following is a rush transcript of the October 23, 2011, edition of "Fox News Sunday With Chris Wallace." This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

CHRIS WALLACE, HOST: I'm Chris Wallace.adsonar_placementId=1502157;adsonar_pid=150758;adsonar_ps=-1;adsonar_zw=198;adsonar_zh=170;adsonar_jv='ads.adsonar.com';

All U.S. troops will be out of Iraq by year's end and Libya's Muammar Qaddafi is killed.

Dramatic changes in the Middle East landscape offer both opportunity and challenge for U.S. foreign policy. We'll talk with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.

Then, a new phase in the 2012 Republican presidential race. With debates on hold for now, the candidates get down to real campaigning.

We continue our one-on-one series of interviews with Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.

Plus, the Romney-Perry matchup gets physical. We'll ask our Sunday panel how it shakes up the battle for the GOP nomination.

All right now on "Fox News Sunday."

(MUSIC)

WALLACE: And hello, again, from Fox News in Washington.

On Friday, President Obama announced he will keep a campaign promise and bring all U.S. troops home from Iraq by the end of the year.

Earlier, we spoke with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Uzbekistan about Iraq and the death of ousted Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, the U.S. commander in Iraq, General Lloyd Austin, wanted upwards of 15,000 troops in Iraq next year. And the White House talked about 3,000 to 5,000. So, why is President Obama pulling all of the troops out?

SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY CLINTON: Well, Chris, I think we should put this into the appropriate historical context. First of all, President Obama said that combat troops would leave Iraq by the end of this year. And before he ever said that, the Bush administration committed to with drawing all troops by the end of this year.

So, you have a bipartisan commitment to withdraw combat troops. And that was viewed as be appropriate given on the Iraqi security forces.

But we -- I always made clear, we were open to discussions with the Iraqis if they wanted some kind of continuing presence. And what we've agreed is a support and training mission, similar to what we have in countries from Jordan to Colombia. And we will be working with the Iraqis. We will also have a very robust diplomatic presence and we will fulfill what are the request that the Iraqis have made to us.

WALLACE: But if it were the general order of business, why was your State Department negotiating with the Maliki government until a few weeks ago to keep thousands of troops there?

CLINTON: This was an ongoing discussion. It started, you know, several years ago. It kept going and, at the end of the day, as in many discussions and negotiations, an agreement was reached that met the needs of both sides. The president has fulfilled the commitment he met to the American people. We've also, under the president's leadership, fulfilled the commitment requested by the Iraqis.

Iraq is a sovereign, independent nation with whom we have very god relations and we expect to have a continuing good strong security relationship for many years to come.

WALLACE: A wide range of foreign policy experts, though, say that Iraq is not yet ready to handle the possibility of sectarian violence or interference from Iran. Former Governor Mitt Romney said this after the announcement of the fallout, "President Obama's astonishing failure to secure orderly transition in Iraq has unnecessarily put at risk the victories that were won through blood and sacrifice of thousands of American men and women."

Secretary, how do you respond to that?

CLINTON: Well, first of all. We are all very moved by and grateful of the sacrifices of our men and women, those who lost their lives and those who were grievously injured -- they will never be forgotten and what they did should be honored in our country's history forever.

The point of our involvement in Iraq stated over and over again by people on both sides of the aisle was to create the opportunity for the Iraqis to have their own future without the oppression of a dictator like Saddam Hussein. Now, you can't on the hands say you are all for democracy and sovereignty and independence where people make their own choices, and on the other hand say when a choice is made that is foreseen by our own government -- going back to the Bush administration and validated by the Obama administration and the current government in Iraq -- that that somehow is not appropriate, because that is what we were there for: to give the Iraqi people the chance to make their own decisions.

So, we have a security presence with a support and training mission in Iraq. We have bases in the region with other countries. That's what you do when you're dealing with independent sovereign nations that have a will and decision of their own.

WALLACE: Secretary, let's turn if we can to Libya. The U.N. and human rights groups are calling for an investigation saying that if, as it appears from the videotape, that Qaddafi was executed, it was a war crime. And you are also coming under fire for what you said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CLINTON: We came, we saw, he died.

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: Question -- do you regret what you said, Secretary?

CLINTON: Well --

WALLACE: And if I may, do you regret what you said? And do you feel Qaddafi was wronged? Or that he got what was coming to him?

CLINTON: Well, let's have an investigation. I fully support the United Nations' investigation and I fully support the Transitional National Council's own call for an investigation. I support it on the merits because it's important to find the facts, and I support it as part of what will be a challenging transition process.

You know, the Transitional National Council today is going to declare the liberation of Libya. They are then going to announce a new government. They need to make it clear that it will be a government to unify the country, to seek reconciliation, to make everyone who supported the former regime, as long as they don't have blood on their hands, fell safe and included in a new Libya.

And so, from my perspective, I think such an investigation would be very important to establish accountability, and rule of law, and pave the way for the inclusive democratic future that the Libyans tell me they want.

WALLACE: Secretary, do you regret what you said?

CLINTON: Well, you know, I'm not going to comment on that. We didn't even know what was happening at that time because it was an unconfirmed report.

WALLACE: I have to also ask you about the man who was convicted for Pan Am 103, Megrahi. You talk about the rule of law. Would you like to see him return to a Scottish prison?  Print  Email  Share    Recommend Tweet

continued...

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October 23, 2011

Clinton Talks Iraq, Libya; Sen. Graham Challenges GOP Candidates; Bachmann Focused on Iowa

October 16, 2011

Eric Cantor Talks Competing Jobs Plans; Dianne Feinstein on Alleged Iranian Plot ADVERTISEMENT Follow Fox News Sunday

Follow us on Twitter to get exclusive updates and announcements from the show!

Fox News Sunday is on Facebook! Coming Up on FNS: October 23, 2011

All US troops will depart from Iraq by the end of the year and ousted Libyan Dictator Moammar Qaddafi is killed.  We'll discuss what both developments mean for US interests in the Middle East with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC).

 

Then, after another fiery debate, a new stage of the GOP presidential primary begins.  We’ll ask Michele Bachmann how she plans to campaign, so she can best position herself for a strong performance in the early voting states.

ADVERTISEMENT Wallace Watch

October 23, 2011

Panel Plus: October 23, 2011

Watch the 'FOX News Sunday' panel Brit Hume, David Drucker, Kimberley Strassel and Juan Williams as they discuss the 2012 candidates' tax reform plans, in our web exclusive Panel Plus.[fnvideo

Clinton Defends Administration's Iraq WithdrawalOn This Day: October 23, 1995Fox News Sunday Snippets: October 23, 2011 Connect With FNS FacebookTwitterEmailFree PodcastBlogHulu On This Day

October 23, 2011

On This Day: October 23, 1995

Russian President Boris Yeltsin and President Bill Clinton agreed to a joint peacekeeping effort in the war-torn Bosnia. A news conference was held with President Yeltsin and President Clinton that

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The following is a rush transcript of the October 23, 2011, edition of "Fox News Sunday With Chris Wallace." This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

CHRIS WALLACE, HOST: I'm Chris Wallace.

All U.S. troops will be out of Iraq by year's end and Libya's Muammar Qaddafi is killed.

Dramatic changes in the Middle East landscape offer both opportunity and challenge for U.S. foreign policy. We'll talk with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.

Then, a new phase in the 2012 Republican presidential race. With debates on hold for now, the candidates get down to real campaigning.

We continue our one-on-one series of interviews with Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.

Plus, the Romney-Perry matchup gets physical. We'll ask our Sunday panel how it shakes up the battle for the GOP nomination.

All right now on "Fox News Sunday."

(MUSIC)

WALLACE: And hello, again, from Fox News in Washington.

On Friday, President Obama announced he will keep a campaign promise and bring all U.S. troops home from Iraq by the end of the year.

Earlier, we spoke with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Uzbekistan about Iraq and the death of ousted Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, the U.S. commander in Iraq, General Lloyd Austin, wanted upwards of 15,000 troops in Iraq next year. And the White House talked about 3,000 to 5,000. So, why is President Obama pulling all of the troops out?

SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY CLINTON: Well, Chris, I think we should put this into the appropriate historical context. First of all, President Obama said that combat troops would leave Iraq by the end of this year. And before he ever said that, the Bush administration committed to with drawing all troops by the end of this year.

So, you have a bipartisan commitment to withdraw combat troops. And that was viewed as be appropriate given on the Iraqi security forces.

But we -- I always made clear, we were open to discussions with the Iraqis if they wanted some kind of continuing presence. And what we've agreed is a support and training mission, similar to what we have in countries from Jordan to Colombia. And we will be working with the Iraqis. We will also have a very robust diplomatic presence and we will fulfill what are the request that the Iraqis have made to us.

WALLACE: But if it were the general order of business, why was your State Department negotiating with the Maliki government until a few weeks ago to keep thousands of troops there?

CLINTON: This was an ongoing discussion. It started, you know, several years ago. It kept going and, at the end of the day, as in many discussions and negotiations, an agreement was reached that met the needs of both sides. The president has fulfilled the commitment he met to the American people. We've also, under the president's leadership, fulfilled the commitment requested by the Iraqis.

Iraq is a sovereign, independent nation with whom we have very god relations and we expect to have a continuing good strong security relationship for many years to come.

WALLACE: A wide range of foreign policy experts, though, say that Iraq is not yet ready to handle the possibility of sectarian violence or interference from Iran. Former Governor Mitt Romney said this after the announcement of the fallout, "President Obama's astonishing failure to secure orderly transition in Iraq has unnecessarily put at risk the victories that were won through blood and sacrifice of thousands of American men and women."

Secretary, how do you respond to that?

CLINTON: Well, first of all. We are all very moved by and grateful of the sacrifices of our men and women, those who lost their lives and those who were grievously injured -- they will never be forgotten and what they did should be honored in our country's history forever.

The point of our involvement in Iraq stated over and over again by people on both sides of the aisle was to create the opportunity for the Iraqis to have their own future without the oppression of a dictator like Saddam Hussein. Now, you can't on the hands say you are all for democracy and sovereignty and independence where people make their own choices, and on the other hand say when a choice is made that is foreseen by our own government -- going back to the Bush administration and validated by the Obama administration and the current government in Iraq -- that that somehow is not appropriate, because that is what we were there for: to give the Iraqi people the chance to make their own decisions.

So, we have a security presence with a support and training mission in Iraq. We have bases in the region with other countries. That's what you do when you're dealing with independent sovereign nations that have a will and decision of their own.

WALLACE: Secretary, let's turn if we can to Libya. The U.N. and human rights groups are calling for an investigation saying that if, as it appears from the videotape, that Qaddafi was executed, it was a war crime. And you are also coming under fire for what you said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CLINTON: We came, we saw, he died.

(LAUGHTER)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WALLACE: Question -- do you regret what you said, Secretary?

CLINTON: Well --

WALLACE: And if I may, do you regret what you said? And do you feel Qaddafi was wronged? Or that he got what was coming to him?

CLINTON: Well, let's have an investigation. I fully support the United Nations' investigation and I fully support the Transitional National Council's own call for an investigation. I support it on the merits because it's important to find the facts, and I support it as part of what will be a challenging transition process.

You know, the Transitional National Council today is going to declare the liberation of Libya. They are then going to announce a new government. They need to make it clear that it will be a government to unify the country, to seek reconciliation, to make everyone who supported the former regime, as long as they don't have blood on their hands, fell safe and included in a new Libya.

And so, from my perspective, I think such an investigation would be very important to establish accountability, and rule of law, and pave the way for the inclusive democratic future that the Libyans tell me they want.

WALLACE: Secretary, do you regret what you said?

CLINTON: Well, you know, I'm not going to comment on that. We didn't even know what was happening at that time because it was an unconfirmed report.

WALLACE: I have to also ask you about the man who was convicted for Pan Am 103, Megrahi. You talk about the rule of law. Would you like to see him return to a Scottish prison?  Print  Email  Share    Recommend Tweet

continued...

< 1 2 3 4 5> adsonar_placementId=1493988; adsonar_pid=1373767; adsonar_ps=-1; adsonar_zw=612; adsonar_zh=240; adsonar_jv='ads.adsonar.com'; FNS Transcripts

October 23, 2011

Clinton Talks Iraq, Libya; Sen. Graham Challenges GOP Candidates; Bachmann Focused on Iowa

October 16, 2011

Eric Cantor Talks Competing Jobs Plans; Dianne Feinstein on Alleged Iranian Plot ADVERTISEMENT Follow Fox News Sunday

Follow us on Twitter to get exclusive updates and announcements from the show!

Fox News Sunday is on Facebook! Coming Up on FNS: October 23, 2011

All US troops will depart from Iraq by the end of the year and ousted Libyan Dictator Moammar Qaddafi is killed.  We'll discuss what both developments mean for US interests in the Middle East with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC).

 

Then, after another fiery debate, a new stage of the GOP presidential primary begins.  We’ll ask Michele Bachmann how she plans to campaign, so she can best position herself for a strong performance in the early voting states.

ADVERTISEMENT Wallace Watch

October 23, 2011

Panel Plus: October 23, 2011

Watch the 'FOX News Sunday' panel Brit Hume, David Drucker, Kimberley Strassel and Juan Williams as they discuss the 2012 candidates' tax reform plans, in our web exclusive Panel Plus.[fnvideo

Clinton Defends Administration's Iraq WithdrawalOn This Day: October 23, 1995Fox News Sunday Snippets: October 23, 2011 Connect With FNS FacebookTwitterEmailFree PodcastBlogHulu On This Day

October 23, 2011

On This Day: October 23, 1995

Russian President Boris Yeltsin and President Bill Clinton agreed to a joint peacekeeping effort in the war-torn Bosnia. A news conference was held with President Yeltsin and President Clinton that

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All U.S. troops will be out of Iraq by year's end and Libya's Muammar Qaddafi is killed.

Dramatic changes in the Middle East landscape offer both opportunity and challenge for U.S. foreign policy. We'll talk with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Republican Senator Lindsey Graham.

Then, a new phase in the 2012 Republican presidential race. With debates on hold for now, the candidates get down to real campaigning.

We continue our one-on-one series of interviews with Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.

Plus, the Romney-Perry matchup gets physical. We'll ask our Sunday panel how it shakes up the battle for the GOP nomination.

All right now on "Fox News Sunday."

(MUSIC)

WALLACE: And hello, again, from Fox News in Washington.

On Friday, President Obama announced he will keep a campaign promise and bring all U.S. troops home from Iraq by the end of the year.

Earlier, we spoke with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Uzbekistan about Iraq and the death of ousted Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

WALLACE: Secretary Clinton, the U.S. commander in Iraq, General Lloyd Austin, wanted upwards of 15,000 troops in Iraq next year. And the White House talked about 3,000 to 5,000. So, why is President Obama pulling all of the troops out?

SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY CLINTON: Well, Chris, I think we should put this into the appropriate historical context. First of all, President Obama said that combat troops would leave Iraq by the end of this year. And before he ever said that, the Bush administration committed to with drawing all troops by the end of this year.

So, you have a bipartisan commitment to withdraw combat troops. And that was viewed as be appropriate given on the Iraqi security forces.

But we -- I always made clear, we were open to discussions with the Iraqis if they wanted some kind of continuing presence. And what we've agreed is a support and training mission, similar to what we have in countries from Jordan to Colombia. And we will be working with the Iraqis. We will also have a very robust diplomatic presence and we will fulfill what are the request that the Iraqis have made to us.

WALLACE: But if it were the general order of business, why was your State Department negotiating with the Maliki government until a few weeks ago to keep thousands of troops there?

CLINTON: This was an ongoing discussion. It started, you know, several years ago. It kept going and, at the end of the day, as in many discussions and negotiations, an agreement was reached that met the needs of both sides. The president has fulfilled the commitment he met to the American people. We've also, under the president's leadership, fulfilled the commitment requested by the Iraqis.

Iraq is a sovereign, independent nation with whom we have very god relations and we expect to have a continuing good strong security relationship for many years to come.

WALLACE: A wide range of foreign policy experts, though, say that Iraq is not yet ready to handle the possibility of sectarian violence or interference from Iran. Former Governor Mitt Romney said this after the announcement of the fallout, "President Obama's astonishing failure to secure orderly transition in Iraq has unnecessarily put at risk the victories that were won through blood and sacrifice of thousands of American men and women."

Secretary, how do you respond to that?

CLINTON: Well, first of all. We are all very moved by and grateful of the sacrifices of our men and women, those who lost their lives and those who were grievously injured -- they will never be forgotten and what they did should be honored in our country's history forever.

The point of our involvement in Iraq stated over and over again by people on both sides of the aisle was to create the opportunity for the Iraqis to have their own future without the oppression of a dictator like Saddam Hussein. Now, you can't on the hands say you are all for democracy and sovereignty and independence where people make their own choices, and on the other hand say when a choice is made that is foreseen by our own government -- going back to the Bush administration and validated by the Obama administration and the current government in Iraq -- that that somehow is not appropriate, because that is what we were there for: to give the Iraqi people the chance to make their own decisions.

So, we have a security presence with a support and training mission in Iraq. We have bases in the region with other countries. That's what you do when you're dealing with independent sovereign nations that have a will and decision of their own.

WALLACE: Secretary, let's turn if we can to Libya. The U.N. and human rights groups are calling for an investigation saying that if, as it appears from the videotape, that Qaddafi was executed, it was a war crime. And you are also coming under fire for what you said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

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