Ed Henry to Earnest: How Is Obama's Video Message to Iranians Different Than Senate GOP Letter You Criticized?


ED HENRY: I want to follow up on Kristen [Welker]'s question on the video that the video that the president sent, basically an open letter if you will, an open video to the Iranian people. Since you were so critical of the Republican Senators for sending an open leader to the Iranian leadership and it might interfere with this potential deal. How can you say that this video might not interfere because the president is essentially attacking hardliners in Iran in saying they don't want a deal. Couldn't this also interfere?

JOSH EARNEST, WHITE HOUSE: I don't anticipate that it will. The president on a number of occasions has -- I think every year on Nowruz -- has issued an open message to people around the world who are celebrating Nowruz.

HENRY: He specifically talks about the deal and why they should be supportive of it.

EARNEST: Right, but the point is that there are people all across the world, throughout the Caucasus and Afghanistan and other places who celebrate Nowruz. The beginning of the message even notes that many Americans celebrate Nowruz. So, that's the first thing.

The second thing is I think a message to people around the world who are celebrating Nowruz is entirely different from an open leader to the hardliners in Iran.

The third thing I'll say is there was a I think pretty obvious partisan tinge to the letter from the 47 Republican Senators to the leaders of Iran. And this one is obviously -- it wasn't as if the president sort of tried to gather support only among Democrats for this message. So I think that makes a difference as well.

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