Mayor Bloomberg Hail President Obama's Tough Talk On Iran
MAYOR BLOOMBERG Thursday did what President Obama would not: met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
But if Bloomberg was trying to step on the President’s diplomatic toes, he wasn’t saying so Thursday.
In fact, both Bloomberg and Netanyahu heaped praise on Obama for his hard-line speech before the United Nations Tuesday against a potentially nuclear Iran.
“I thought President Obama gave an excellent speech in the UN, and he was absolutely right to say that Iran must not be allowed to obtain nuclear weapons,” Bloomberg said before meeting with Netanyahu at Gracie Mansion.
The Israeli prime minister said Obama was on the right track.
“We’re in close consultations with the United States about this issue, about how to practically prevent Iran from moving ahead, how to make them abandon their nuclear weapons ambitions,” Netanyahu said.
The prime minister had hoped to meet with Obama during the United Nations gathering this week, but the President, citing campaign commitments, did not hold any one-on-one sitdowns with foreign leaders.
Instead, Secretary of State Clinton planned to meet with Netanyahu, with Obama planning to follow up by phone.
The Gracie Mansion meeting was a win for both leaders, pundits said.
“(Netanyahu) wants to be able to emphasize that he can have a visible influence in U.S. policy,” said Columbia University Prof. David Epstein. “(Bloomberg) gives him another stage.”
As for the mayor, who last met with Netanyahu when he was in Israel last year, “He looks like a statesman,” Epstein said.
Meanwhile, Bloomberg said he’s decided who he’ll vote for in November — but he refused to name names.