Daily Kickoff: Mike Bloomberg – “Leave Politics Out of Iran Deal” | Gary Samore steps down at UANI | Slow-Down Nation? Dan Senor says not so fast

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Mic’s Jake Horowitz interviewed President Obama on the Iran deal: Obama — “There is great suspicion of this deal among some of our closest allies, Israel in particular, but also some of the Gulf States, who have seen Iran’s actions — trying to destabilize their governments or sponsoring terrorist proxies… But what I can also say for certain is that if Iran started behaving differently, if it wasn’t sponsoring terrorist organizations like Hezbollah, if it wasn’t destabilizing its neighbors, that would be welcomed by those neighbors.”

“Mic: Speaking of Israel, we have another question from a young man in Tel Aviv. Sam Grossberg, a 30 year old in Tel Aviv, Israel: As an Israeli citizen, it’s very obvious that you oppose our prime minister. You’ve made a lot of promises in regards to our security as a people and as you know Hamas is right now basically at our doorstep. Why should we, as the Israeli people, trust you?”

Obama: “Well, as President, I have not only pledged and committed to make sure that America supports Israel’s security. But I’ve also provided more intelligence and military cooperation with Israel than any previous President. I think it’s important for Sam to understand, I don’t oppose the Israeli Prime Minister across the board. We have a strong disagreement about whether or not it makes sense for us to take a deal that cuts off all pathways for Iran getting a nuclear program or whether we should reject a deal, in which case, Iran can break out and start installing advanced centrifuges and potentially pursue a nuclear weapon without us having eyes on what’s going on on the ground or any significant constraints until it’s too late.” [Transcript• Watch the full interview [YouTube]

NPR’s Interview With President Obama: Steve Inskeep — “Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel has argued that as the agreement begins to expire, 13, 14, 15 years from now, the breakout time goes back down to near zero. And in saying that, he quotes you in an interview with us, in which you made a statement that was later clarified. I just want to be absolutely clear on this: 15 years from now, as some provisions expire, what is Iran’s breakout time going to be?”

–President Obama: “This argument that’s been made doesn’t make sense. If in fact the breakout times now are a few months, and we’re able to push that breakout time out to a year so that we have more time and space to see whether or not Iran is cheating on an agreement, kicking out inspectors, going for a nuclear weapon; if the breakout time is extended for 15 years and then it goes back to where it is right now, why is that a bad deal?” [NPR]

“Netanyahu to Democratic Congressmen: I Won’t Tell You How to Vote on Iran Deal” by Barak Ravid: Netanyahu told 22 Democratic members of the U.S. Congress on Sunday he does not intend to tell them how to vote in next month’s ballot on the Iran nuclear agreement, Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) told Haaretz. Hoyer added, however, it was clear from Netanyahu’s speech that he hopes Congress will vote against the deal. “I am not surprised he will feel it is critically important enough to take steps that might ruffle political feathers. It is reasonable.” [Haaretz]

“Congressmen: Egypt opposes Iranian nuclear deal” by Gil Hoffman: “Egypt, like Israel, opposes the Iranian nuclear deal brokered last month by the US and other leading nations, a group of US Congressmen who have been touring Israel and Egypt said Monday… In Israel, the group led by Congressional Israel Allies Caucus chairman Trent Franks (R-Arizona), toured the southern border with Egypt, the Golan near Syria and communities in Judea and Samaria.” [JPost• “Muslims harass Congressmen visiting Temple Mount” [JPost]

AIPAC’s Robert Cohen sent around the following email yesterday… “Over the weekend, The New York Times published an article about AIPAC’s relationship with President Obama and his administration. With significant media attention on this story and on AIPAC, I want to provide you with some context and reiterate our overall approach to this campaign… the White House asked to send its representatives to AIPAC’s venue. We agreed and offered the administration 30 minutes to use in any manner — which the White House likewise accepted. The administration representatives chose to speak for 45 minutes and not use any of their time for questions. AIPAC treated these speakers with great courtesy and respect.” [AIPACBuzzFeed]

“Obama’s Iran nuclear deal rhetoric troubles American Jews” by Kevin Liptak and Hillary Krieger: “Abraham Foxman, until recently the head of the Anti-Defamation League, which combats racism and anti-Semitism, said the language Obama is using could end up “fueling and legitimizing anti-Semitic stereotypes out there that Jews are warmongers.” Foxman, who noted that he was speaking in a personal capacity as he is no longer with the Anti-Defamation League, also objected to administration statements that have singled out Israel. “To say Israelis are the only ones in the world opposed — it’s troubling messaging,” Foxman said.” [CNN]

WHIP COUNT: Senators yes or leaning yes (34 needed to uphold veto, keep the deal): 29 [TheFix

“Plouffe blasts Schumer on Iran position” by Jordan Fabian: “Mitch McConnell will have a field day with this kind of naïveté. We will miss Harry Reid,” Plouffe tweeted. [TheHill• “Liberals pledge to pull $11M in retaliation for Schumer’s Iran stance” [TheHill] • Video: Schumer Says Iran Inspections Regime Has “Lots Of Holes In It” [YouTube]

Mike Bloomberg Op: “If you oppose the Iranian nuclear agreement, you are increasing the chances of war. And if you are a Democrat who opposes the agreement, you are also risking your political career. That’s the message the White House and some liberal leaders are sending — and they ought to stop now, because they are only hurting their credibility… Last week, President Barack Obama said that it was not a difficult decision to endorse the agreement. I couldn’t disagree more. This is an extraordinarily difficult decision, and the President’s case would be more compelling if he stopped minimizing the agreement’s weaknesses and exaggerating its benefits.” [BloombergView]

David Albright: “What Iran’s hostile reaction to the Parchin issue means for the nuclear deal: The United States and Congress should clearly and publicly confirm, and Congress should support with legislation, that if Iran does not address the IAEA’s concerns about the past military dimensions of its nuclear programs, U.S. sanctions will not be lifted. To do otherwise is to make a mockery of the nuclear deal.” [WashPost]

TRANSITION: “Senator Joseph I. Lieberman to Lead United Against Nuclear Iran as Chairman:  UANI’s current Executive Director, David Ibsen, will assume the role of UANI President… Ibsen will replace current UANI President, Dr. Gary Samore, who has served in that role since September 2013. Dr. Samore will remain on UANI’s Advisory Board. “While concerned with many provisions of the Iran deal, Gary ultimately supports the agreement and is stepping down to avoid any conflict with UANI’s work in opposition to the agreement.” [Statement]

“Iraq Vets Take On Obama Over Iran Deal” by Josh Rogin: “Obama has said recently that there are only two camps: those who support the deal versus those who would prefer a bloody and costly war like the conflict in Iraq. The new ad campaign complicates that, asserting that the deal itself will lead to more war. And the voices putting forth that case do not prefer war; they are soldiers who have had enough of it. The group, Veterans Against the Deal, was founded last month as a 501(c)(4) nonprofit, and it does not disclose its donors.” [Bloomberg]

2016 WATCH: “Jeb Bush to assail Clinton, Obama on Iraq” by Eli Stokols: “Bush, who will speak at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley on Tuesday evening, will argue, as he often does on the campaign trail, that Clinton and Obama are to blame for the spread of ISIL across Iraq and Syria and for the broader instability in the Middle East.” [PoliticoWashPost• Livestream at 9PM[ReaganFoundation]

Scene Last Night — by Jared Sichel at a Bernie Sanders rally in Los Angeles: “Sanders told the crowd that 27,000 people showed up, which sounded believable enough. Most people were young but there were plenty of middle-aged people and older folks. Really, it felt like a sports event. The crowd was raucous. The wave circled the arena a dozen times or so as people waited for the rally to begin. And the vending stands were open, so beer and soft pretzels were in abundance. The progressive activists who opened for Sanders (including comedian Sarah Silverman) rallied up the crowd by talking about some core progressive issues… And when Sanders finally appeared, the arena erupted in cheers, and didn’t lose any energy as he spoke for nearly an hour.” • See Jared’s full recap [JewishJournal] • “Bernie Sanders’ Eye-Popping West Coast Swing: 3 Days, 70,000 Cheering Supporters” [Bloomberg]

“Lawrence Lessig to Explore a Run for President as a Democrat: Some people land gyrocopters on the lawn at the Capitol to protest big money in politics. Lawrence Lessig, the Harvard professor and democratic theorist, is thinking of running for president. On Tuesday morning, Mr. Lessig will announce that he will explore a protest bid for the Democratic nomination. If he can raise $1 million in small donations by Labor Day, Mr. Lessig said, he will run.” [FirstDraft] • Fun fact: Lessig clerked for Justice Antonin Scalia at the Supreme Court [Wikipedia]

“Rick Perry stops paying all of his staff as fundraising dries up: Perry campaign manager Jeff Miller told staff last Friday, the day after the first Republican presidential debate, that they would no longer be paid and are free to look for other jobs — and, so far at least, most aides have stuck with Perry — according to this Republican.” [WashPost]

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TOP TALKER: “Google will become part of a collection of companies called Alphabet” by Stacey Higginbotham: “Larry Page just dropped a bomb on the tech community, saying that Google will now be part of a collection of companies called Alphabet, which Page and Sergey Brin will run. [FortuneTheVerge] • See Larry Page’s blog post [Blogspot• Ken Auletta: “Why Larry Page Is Stepping Away” [NewYorker] • “Israeli company to Google: Find another name, Alphabet is taken!” [JPost]

STARTUP NATION: “Mapping Israel’s Cyber-Security Startups” by Adam Fisher, Netanel Meir: “We have prepared the Israel CyberScape  a general resource for CISOs, corporate development executives and investors keen on exploring Israeli cyber security. It includes 150 startup companies divided into 10 market segments.” [TechCrunch

“Israeli Solar Warms Up” by Daniel Gross: “In spite of the bureaucracy and the speed bumps, Israel’s desert is slowly beginning to bloom with silicon panels that help convert the sun’s rays into electrons. Arava Power’s plant won’t hold its title as Israel’s largest solar generating facility for long. Earlier this summer, construction on one of the long-delayed, 110-MW Ashelim plants began.” [Slate]

“The Slow-Down Nation? Israel Is Losing Trained Tech Manpower” by Alisa Odenheimer and Andre Tartar: “Israel, better known as start-up nation, may be at risk of a new nickname. The slow-down nation. A victim of its own success, perhaps. As Israel transitions from developing darling to developed economy, rising labor costs are eroding manufacturers’ competitive edge. A declining number of trained manpower for the technology sector is also having significant negative impact.” [Bloomberg]

JI asked Dan Senor, author of the book that coined the term ‘Start-up Nation,’ if Israel’s tech scene is in risk of a new nickname? Senor replied — “Greetings from Tel Aviv. The cost of labor has not been Israel’s competitive edge for many years. Great engineers in Israel cost about the same as in Silicon Valley, yet it was in Israel that Apple just opened its largest R&D center outside the U.S. There is a constant flow of new multinational companies coming to Israel to open R&D centers and current R&D centers are growing. All this shows that Israel’s comparative advantage is not labor cost.”

“Entrepreneur Thinks Outside the Box With Subscription Gift Service” by Judy Maltz: “With all her new friends in Tel Aviv seemingly launching startups, Canadian immigrant Emily Berg was itching to get in on the fun. But it took a war in Gaza for her idea to crystallize. Today, a few months after launching her first-of-its-kind, Israeli-based subscription box business, this 29-year-old entrepreneur is already turning a profit.” [Haaretz]

BIKE4CHAI: “Cyclists Raise $5.8 Million for Sick Kids’ Summer Camp” by Katy Mantyk: “A band of 413 men biked 180 miles from Stanford, Connecticut, through New Jersey, to Camp Simcha in Glen Spey, New York. When they triumphantly rode across the finish line through a crowd of thousands on Aug. 6, they also brought with them an invisible force—compassion, and almost $6 million. Camp Simcha, which is Hebrew for happiness, is a place for sick children to go and enjoy being children and have the summer of their lives. The No. 1 fundraiser this year, Founder of Meridian Capital Group, LLC, Ralph Herzka, raised over $600,000. Jack Eisenberger, owner of Fieldgate Developments in Toronto, raised $416,000, and Moey Shabot, president of Maverick Apparel, raised $217,000.” [EpochTimes]

DESSERT: “Meet ‘RaBBi-Q’ — Kansas City’s kosher BBQ star” by Victor Wishna: “Mendel Segal wears two particular titles that each reflect a devotion to tradition, imply an unending pursuit of precision and command immediate respect. One is rabbi. The other is pitmaster.” [JTA• “Kim Kushner, in Israel to launch her new cookbook, is trailblazing a new foodie movement that prizes freshness and simplicity above all.” [Haaretz] • “‘Valet’ brings kosher eats to the front door” [NJJN• “Walls Up at College of Charleston’s Kosher/Vegan/Vegetarian Dining Hall” [Eater]

BIRTHDAYS: David Brooks turns 54… Isaac ‘Yitz’ Applbaum celebrates his 55th in Napa, of course… David Rubenstein turns 66… Jacob Segal…

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