But ultimately we're going to have to see whether a country like Russia for example is willing to work with us to apply pressure on Iran to take a path toward international respectability as opposed to the path they're on. That's not something we're going to know the results of for several more months as we continue to do the hard diplomatic work of putting this coalition together to tell Iran "make the better choice."
TAPPER: Do we need Russia more than Russia needs us?
OBAMA: You know I think that Russia has its own concerns. Russia, I think, understands that their long term prosperity is still tied to the world economy and to the world community. I think on a whole host of international issues they recognize that a partnership with the United States will strengthen them and their interests, so I think there's the opportunity for mutual benefit here.
What we had to do, not just with respect to Russia, but with respect to Muslim communities around the world, with respect to Europe to obviously a leser degree, is to clear away some of the underbrush that had gotten in the way of us seeing our common interests.
Now, with the tone reset which is not unimportant, comes the hard work of actually seeing this produce improvements in our security situation and the world security situation.
An improvement in tone does not change the fact that different countries have different interests, and it's hard, and we're in a much more complex world than we were even ten years ago.
But in the absence of that change of tone, we couldn't have even gotten to the point where countries were recognizing that they may have common interests with the United States, and it doesn't hurt that in a lot of these countries now we've been able to improve perceptions of the united states among the public. The world leaders are like politicians everywhere, and thery're reading the polls. They find out that their population, 45 percent of or 30 percent approve of America and 70 percent disapprove, that is a strong disincentive to want to work with us.
I think that's been reversed and I think that can help although ultimately we're going to have to see how far they're willing to take it.
TAPPER: Turning to domestic issues back home, Vice President Biden recently said that everyone, including your team, misread the economy when you guys were formulating the stimulus package. If the diagnosis was wrong, how can you be sure that the prescription, the stimulus package was right, and what's your opinion of some of the democratic calls including recently from Laura --- Tyson to start considering or implementing a second stimulus.
OBAMA: I think what Vice President Biden was referring to was simply the fact that when we passed he stimulus, we hadn't gotten the full report of the first quarter contractions in the economy that turned out to be way worse than anybody had anticipated, but we still knew that there was an economic tsunami coming at us, and we still knew that we were going to need a substantial stimulus. We knew that the component parts of that stimulus would be tax cuts which you can get out really fast. Money to states so they're not laying off teachers and firefighters, and police officers at such a rapid pace and in fact that has happened