President Obama: “I believe that Sochi is safe.”

The Media Center at Sochi will be full this week as the Winter Olympics gets underway this week.
The Media Center at Sochi will be full this week as the Winter Olympics gets underway this week.
Yesterday CNN anchor Jake Taper  spoke to President  Barack Obama about the Super Bowl as well as the Winter Olympics. The two men talked about the security in Russia and all aspects of the big game Sunday.
President Obama :  I’d tell them that I believe that Sochi is safe and that there are always some risks in these large international gatherings.  Uh, I — I’m always going to feel even better if the — inside the United States, because then we have full control over what happens.
But the — the Russian authorities understand the stakes here.  They understand that, uh, there are potential threats, uh, that are out there.  And, uh, we are coordinating with them.  We’ve looked at their plans.  I think we have a good sense of the — uh, the security that they’re putting in place to protect not only the athletes themselves, but also visitors there.

Uh, so what I would say is is that if you want to go to the Olympics, you should go to the Olympics.  And, uh, you know, we’re not discouraging, in any way, Americans from participating in what is just always a — an amazing, wonderful event.

In these large settings like this, there are always some risk involved.  Uh, and I don’t want to completely discount those, uh, but as we’ve seen here in the United States and, you know, at the Boston Marathon, I mean there were — there were some risks if you have lone wolfs, uh, or small cells of folks who are trying to do some damage.

And I think that it’s very important for anybody who’s attending the Olympics to get in contact with, uh, our State Department, get on the Web site, look at what kinds of, uh, just prudent measures you should take, uh, that wouldn’t necessarily be unique to Sochi.  That — that is something that we would advise any time you’re involved in a — a big international event like this.


TAPPER: So big game this Sunday.  I wonder what you made of the Richard Sherman kerfuffle.  His sideline rant, the push back, the push back to the push back, his argument that calling him a thug was just a more polite version of calling him the n word what did you think of the whole thing?

 OBAMA: Well first of all he’s a great cornerback who made a great play and won the game for the Seahawks.  He’s is obviously a very smart guy, wonderful story that he came up from Compton went to Stanford, has helped other people graduate and go to college from his old school and my sense is he’s taking a page out of Muhammed Ali’s playbook which is, I think he’s said explicitly, this is a good way to get attention.  In fact Ali said he got his stick from wrestler’s the used to watch.  And

 TAPPER :So it’s just that tradition.

 OBAMA: SO I think it’s part of that tradition of you know let me get some attention, obviously it’s worked.  I suspect he’s going to have a lot more endorsement contracts and I think more jersey sales after that.  It’s going to be a great game.  You’ve got Peyton Manning who may be he’s had the greatest season any Quarterback has any had and to watch him go against a team that is known for it’s defense, and particularly it’s passing defense, I think means there’s going to be some excitement there.

 TAPPER: I’m going to give you a choice.  I’m going to give you two.  Hillary verus Biden or Broncos verus Seahawks.  You have to pick one and give me the winner.

 OBAMA: Well I think that Broncos Seahawks…

 TAPPER: So you’re going with that one.

 OBAMA : Surprisingly enough.   I think it’s going to be a lot like the Seahawks 49ers game.  I think it’s going to come down to the last play and I think um in the end of the day…I’m not going to pick because I don’t want to offend any of the great cities participating. 

TAPPER: OK so you’ll go with Hillary vs. Biden then.


OBAMA:  I’m too smart for that Jake.  Come on man.  I love the state of Washington and I love the state of Colorado.


 TAPPER: Come on you’re not running for anything else anymore.  You won them both. 


 The transcript was provided from CNN.