Friday, August 7, 2015

The Noise Machine Is Drowning The Iran Deal

Weeks of ridiculous Republican rhetoric on Iran, ranging from Lindsey Graham's Neville Chamberlain idiocy to Mike Huckabee's statement that President Obama was "leading Jews to the ovens" has turned the public decidedly against the proposition.

A majority of Americans opposes a recently reached international accord lifting sanctions on Iran in exchange for new limits on its nuclear program, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll.

Nearly six in 10 Americans, or 57 percent, oppose the nuclear deal, while 28 percent voice support for it in the national poll released Monday, in a 2-to-1 margin against the deal
Republicans strongly oppose the deal brokered by the Obama administration, 86 to 3 percent, while Democrats support the top second-term foreign policy agenda item for President Obama, 52 to 32 percent. 
A majority of Americans disapprove the way Obama is handling the situation in Iran (56 percent), compared with 35 percent who approve. A majority (58 percent) also thinks the deal makes the world less safe.

It's a good thing polls don't make foreign policy, but Republicans have, at least in the short term, turned this major win with Iran into a real problem for President Obama and the Democrats.  Several other polling outlets have reported similar numbers, and in every case Americans are very skeptical of the nuclear deal.  President Obama took to the airwaves yesterday to once again make the case for the deal.

President Obama took on critics of the nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers in an aggressive speech on Wednesday, saying they were the same people who created the “drumbeat of war” and played on public fears to push the United States into the Iraq war more than a decade ago.

Let’s not mince words: The choice we face is ultimately between diplomacy and some sort of war — maybe not tomorrow, maybe not three months from now, but soon,” Mr. Obama told about 200 people in a speech at American University. “How can we in good conscience justify war before we’ve tested a diplomatic agreement that achieves our objectives?

Mr. Obama, opening a new, more overtly political phase of his public campaign for the accord, portrayed the coming vote in Congress to approve or reject the deal as the most consequential foreign policy decision for lawmakers since Congress voted in 2003 to authorize the invasion of Iraq. He implored them to “shut out the noise” and back the deal.

Delivered in stark terms that surprised some foreign policy analysts and left no room for questioning whether the agreement is good for American security — “It’s not even close,” Mr. Obama declared at one point — the president’s speech was a striking display of certitude about a diplomatic deal that has split the American public and presented a dilemma for lawmakers, including many in his own party.

Mr. Obama criticized Republicans who are pressing forward with legislation to block the accord, which is on track for a vote in September. Opposition to the agreement, he said, stems from “knee-jerk partisanship that has become all too familiar, rhetoric that renders every decision made to be a disaster, a surrender.”

He said hard-liners in Iran who chant “Death to America” were “making common cause with the Republican caucus.”

Republicans went berserk over that last statement, accusing the President of calling them, and the majority of Americans against the deal, traitors to the country. In reponse to the president,   Republicans now say they will pass a bill implementing more sanctions on Iran after the 60 days is up, almost certainly collapsing the deal by default.

We'll see how this goes, as Sen. Chuck Schumer is the highest ranking Democrat yet to abandon the deal but you'd better believe that Republicans are going to do everything they can to wreck this deal and start a war with Iran.

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