Mitch McConnell says President Obama could win on Iran nuclear deal

08/18/2015 06:44 PM

GEORGETOWN — U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., will make a motion to disapprove the nuclear deal with Iran negotiated by the White House, but he says President Barack Obama could still succeed on Capitol Hill.

McConnell explained the scenario to the Scott County Chamber of Commerce on Monday in Georgetown, saying that if his motion to disapprove is successful, Obama will likely veto the disapproval, forcing congressional Democrats to sustain the veto.

“So he’s still got a great likelihood of success, but even if he does succeed, I will remind you, since he insisted on this being an executive agreement only, it can be reviewed by the next president a year-and-a-half from now,” McConnell told the crowd. “It’s not a treaty.”

After the speech McConnell spoke to reporters about the deal, which he said the “procedure is stacked in the president’s favor.”

Still, McConnell said he hopes to defeat the measure and said Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York’s opposition to the deal could help prevent it from being put in place.

In a statement posted online Schumer explained his opposition to the deal, saying he believes Iran “will not change” and Tehran will be able to eliminate economic sanctions and retain nuclear power.

Responding to a question from Pure Politics, McConnell said he does not think the nuclear deal, which Israel opposes, will harm the diplomatic relations.

“The relationship with the U.S. and Israel is very strong. It’s not going to change as a result of this,” McConnell said. “But I think the prime minister of Israel got it right — this is a very, very bad deal.”

Israeli Consul General Yaron Sideman sat down with Pure Politics on Tuesday to talk about the Iran nuclear deal, which he said would “pave the way for Iran to become a legitimate nuclear and eventually military nuclear power, and we think that is very bad.”

“They have a very immediate expiration date, which is 10 years from now,” Sideman said. “In global affairs that’s the blink of an eye. It’s not even kicking the can down the next generation.”

“You and I and our children will wake up 10 years from now to a reality of an Iran that is either a threshold nuclear state or a full-fledged one.”

Watch the full interview with Sideman below.

McConnell told the Scott County crowd that the deal is “very flawed,” even making a comparison to drug testing.

“As someone said the way these inspections are done, the Iranians get so much notice before the International Atomic Energy Agency is allowed to come in it is somewhat akin to sending in your own urine sample,” McConnell said. “On the substance it is a very bad agreement.”

About Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics, the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like the connection between the high profile Steubenville, Ohio rape and a Kentucky hacker whose push for further investigation could put him in federal prison. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Follow Nick on Twitter @NickStorm_cn2. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or nicholas.storm@twcnews.com.

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