Kerry and the myth of a better deal

Rejecting critics who say the United States should simply re-negotiate a “better deal” with Iran over its nuclear program, Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday such a proposal is naive and based on a misreading of the last decade of diplomatic efforts to curb Tehran’s nuclear program. “There isn’t a, quote, ‘better deal’ to be gotten,” said Kerry, speaking at an event hosted by Thomson Reuters in New York. Barack Obama’s administration is currently promoting its nuclear accord to the public and Congress, which is expected to vote on the deal in September after the August recess. President Obama has promised to veto legislation rejecting the pact. With Republicans almost uniformly opposed to the agreement, the GOP would need support from at least 13 Democrats in the Senate and 44 in the House to override a veto. A trio of Democratic senators have indicated that they would side with the White House in recent days, but one of the most powerful Democratic lawmakers, New York Senator Chuck Schumer, has announced vocal opposition to the pact. On Monday, in his first remarks following the publication of his blog post announcing his opposition to the deal, Schumer said “I believe we should go back and try to get a better deal,” adding “the nations of the world should join us in that.” In his speech Tuesday, Kerry pushed back hard against Schumer and other critics. The nation’s top diplomat noted that two previous efforts by the George W. Bush administration to negotiate the complete dismantlement of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure in 2003 and 2008 failed to secure an agreement. Instead, he said, Iran kept advancing its nuclear enrichment capabilities”.

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