The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) otherwise known as the Iran nuclear agreement was signed in Vienna on 14 July 2015 between Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council: China, France, Russia, United Kingdom, United States, plus Germany as well as the European Union. The agreement is a comprehensive agreement on the nuclear program of Iran.
As expected, Republicans lined up against the deal. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell opposed the agreement, saying “The comprehensive nuclear agreement announced today appears to further the flawed elements of April’s interim agreement because the Obama Administration approached these talks from a flawed perspective: reaching the best deal acceptable to Iran, rather than actually advancing our national goal of ending Iran’s nuclear program.” Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain pledged to hold hearings on the deal saying he is “totally opposed to” the agreement. Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman Bob Corker also opposed the deal, saying that he believed that the West had conceded too much. Speaker of the House John Boehner called the agreement “a bad deal.”
As to be expected, the Republican presidential hopefuls uniformly condemned the deal.
- Jeb Bush issued a statement claiming, “The nuclear agreement announced by the Obama administration today is a dangerous, deeply flawed, and short sighted deal.”
- Scott Walker said that it “will be remembered as one of America’s worst diplomatic failures,” adding: “I call on all congressional leaders and presidential candidates, including Secretary Clinton, to repudiate this agreement.”
- Marco Rubio said in a statement that, “based on what we know thus far, I believe that this deal undermines our national security.”
- Chris Christie urged Congress to override Obama’s promised veto of any legislation to halt the deal saying “The deal threatens Israel, it threatens the United States, and it turns 70 years of nuclear policy on its head.”
- Mike Huckabee argued that the deal would “empower” Iran to destroy Israel, likening the nuclear deal to “marching the Israelis to the door of the oven,” a reference to the Holocaust.
- Lindsey Graham said that the deal would ensure a nuclear arms race in the Mideast and create “a possible death sentence for Israel,” adding that: “This is the most dangerous, irresponsible step I’ve ever seen in the history of watching the Mideast.” He said, “Barack Obama [and] John Kerry have been dangerously naïve about the Mideast in general. They’ve taken it to a new level.”
- Carly Fiorina also suggested that the agreement would make an arms race in the region more likely. “Iran has demonstrated bad behavior for 30 years,” she said. “We know they have been trying to cheat on this deal.”
- Ben Carson called the deal “an historic mistake” and a “recipe for disaster.”
Noting that “Wars don’t start themselves,” the parody of Republicans begins by stating, “They’re too old to fight a war, but that won’t stop these brave U.S. Senators from trying to start one with Iran,” and goes on to show the conservatives blowing up the Iran agreement – “Expendables Style!”