President Obama held a year-end press conference Friday, before jetting off to Hawaii for a 17-day Christmas vacation.
Lasting 50 minutes, Obama said Sony “made a mistake” cancelling the release of the movie “The Interview,” after a cyber-attack on the company’s computer system by North Korea, and said the U.S. will respond “proportionately.”
“I think it says something interesting about North Korea that they decided to have the state mount an all-out assault on a movie studio because of a satirical movie starring Seth Rogen and James Flacco,” Obama said. “I love Seth, and I love James. But the notion that that was a threat to them gives you some sense, I think, of the kind of regime we’re talking about here.”
“I am sympathetic to the concerns [Sony] faced,” he added. “Having said all that, yes, I think they made a mistake … I wish they’d spoken to me first, I would have told them: Do not get into the pattern in which you are intimidated.”
Obama also talked about his decision this week to restore diplomatic relations with the communist government of Cuba, saying that after 50 years we have to “try something different.”
“Change is going to come to Cuba,” he said. “It has to.”
Ignoring the looting and rioting that took place, Obama briefly touched on race relations, saying the country had a “healthy conversation” in the aftermath of the grand jury decisions in Ferguson and New York.
After he ignored the incoming Republican-led Congress to sign an overreaching executive order on immigration, Obama said he wants to work with the GOP on issues such as expanding international trade and tax reform.
Interestingly, the president only called on female reporters and said he was excited about his final two years in office.
“My presidency’s heading into the fourth quarter,” Obama said. “Interesting stuff happens in the fourth quarter.”
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