In the Oval Office meeting with Obama, Schultz bantered a bit with the president about the politics of the issue. Obama told Schultz, who was present with Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev at the historic first cut in nuclear arsenals in 1986 in Reykjavik, Iceland, that it was nice to work on a bipartisan issue. Schultz told Obama the issue is "obviously bipartisan," but added, "none of us think of it that way.... It is nonpartisan. It is a subject of such importance that it ought to be taken out of any partisan arena." Schultz says that "Obama laughed and agreed."
Two weeks ago when Obama announced the new START treaty as part of a US "reset" with Russia – a small but crucial hurdle in moving forward on a larger nuclear agenda – he thanked and named each of the "gang of four" statesmen.
The four men are fond of using the word "urgent" in arguing for zero nukes. They worry less about a cold-war nuclear missile exchange, and more about jihadists seizing fissile material from, say, an unstable Pakistan, which has of late continued to produce more highly enriched uranium than it needs. Or a possible Middle East nuclear race by Egypt, Syria, or Saudi Arabia in the wake of a bomb made by the Shiite government in Iran. (This is to say nothing of what Israel's reaction might be.)