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Iran nuclear deal is not a treaty, we’re not bound by it: Sen. Rounds

February 16, 2020


>>WE HAVE TO WORK ON THIS MORE COMPREHENSIVE DEAL, BATHED AS PRESIDENT TRUMP SAID YESTERDAY ON FORMULAS. THE SUBSTANCE OF THE EXISTING AGREEMENT, ESPECIALLY IF YOU DECIDE TO LEAVE IT. THE PAST 2025 PERIOD IN ORDER TO BE SURE THAT WE WILL NEVER HAVE ANY TALK CLEAR — NUCLEAR ACTIVITY FOR IRAN. NEIL: THE FRENCH PRESIDENT ADDRESSING CONGRESS SHORT TIME AGO AND TAKING DECIDEDLY DIRECT TACK THAT GOES IN OPPOSITE DIRECTION OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES HE WAS DIPLOMATIC, NODDING HIS HEAD A LOT OF THE TIME BUT THIS WAS VERY MUCH REVERSAL FROM THAT POSITION OR SEEMED TO BE. REPUBLICAN SOUTH DAKOTA SENATOR MIKE ROUNDS ON ALL THAT. SENATOR, I READ IT WAS ENTIRELY DIFFERENT PRESIDENT MACRON TODAY, WHETHER ON ISSUE OF IRAN AGREEMENT WHICH HE THINKS CAN BE FIXED, SHOULDN’T BE SHELVED, AND EVEN ON THE PARIS ACCORD, THE CLIMATE ACCORD, THAT CAN BE FIXED, IT SHOULDN’T BE SHELVED EITHER. WHAT DID YOU MAKE OF BOTH?>>WELL WITH REGARD TO THE JCPOA, WE PAID MONEY UP FRONT. WE DON’T HAVE A WHOLE LOT TO SAY WHETHER THEY GET IN AND STAY WITH THE DEAL, WHETHER THEY’RE PART OF IT OR NOT, BUT THE JCPOA IS BAD DEAL TO BEGIN WITH. IT IS STILL A BAD DEAL AND PART OF IT — NEIL: I DON’T THINK THE FRENCH PRESIDENT THINKS IT IS A BAD DEAL.>>YOU’RE RIGHT BUT HERE IS THE PART THAT REALLY CONCERNED ME. HE SUGGESTED THAT WE HAD SIGNED THE DEAL. NOW PRESIDENT OBAMA SIGNED THE DEAL. THAT MADE IT A POLITICAL AGREEMENT. THE HOUSE AND SENATE HAVE NEVER AGREED TO IT. MAJORITY OF THE HOUSE AND MAJORITY OF THE SENATE DID NOT AGREE WITH IT. IF YOU WANT TO HAVE SOMETHING WHICH THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA IS PARTY TO, YOU CALL THAT A TREATY. IT IS DEFINITELY NOT A TREATY. ONE OF THE REASONS WHY IT IS NOT A TREATY BECAUSE THERE WERE NOT VOTES TO AGREE TO IT. THAT HAS TO BE MADE VERY CLEAR TO THE REST OF THE WORLD. PRESIDENT OBAMA HAD OPPORTUNITY TO BRING A DEAL TO THE UNITED STATES SENATE. HE DID NOT DO IT. IT IS NOT A TREATY. WE’RE TO THE BOUND BY IT. NEIL: THE FRENCH PRESIDENT THINKS OTHERWISE. WHAT IS THE DEAL WITH HIM? YESTERDAY SEEMED TO BE SYMPATHETIC WITH THE PRESIDENT’S POSITION, TODAY, NOT SO MUCH. GOT MORE STAND OVATIONS FROM THE DEMOCRATIC SIDE THAN REPUBLICAN SIDE. WHAT DO YOU THINK? WE’RE ALL TRYING TO BE POLITE. NEIL: UNDERSTOOD.>>THE LEADER OF FRANCE IS A INDIVIDUAL WE HAVE GOOD WORKING RELATIONSHIP WITH. WE HAVE A WHOLE LOT MORE IN COMMON THAN WE DISAGREE ON. THERE ARE THINGS WE DISAGREE ON, YOU HIT WITH THE JCPOA. THE CLIMATE CHANGE AND DIRECTION FORWARD AND HOW WE HANDLE IT. THAT WAS DIVISIVE IN THE DISCUSSION TODAY. IT WAS ENTERTAINING TO WATCH THE DIFFERENCES AND HOW HE DID THE PROPOSAL BUT HE KEPT US UP AND LIKE I SAY, WE HAVE A GREAT RELATIONSHIP WITH THE PEOPLE OF FRANCE BUT THAT DOESN’T MEAN WE’RE GOING TO AGREE ON EVERYTHING. NEIL: FAIR ENOUGH. SENATOR, I WOULD LIKE TO SWITCH GEARS A LITTLE BIT, THE PRESIDENT’S CHOICE TO HEAD THE VETERANS ADMINISTRATION, DR. RONNIE JACKSON IS TAKING A LOT EVER HEAT RIGHT NOW. A LOT OF PEOPLE ARE SAYING, INCLUDING SARAH SANDERS A SHORT TIME AGO, SOME OF THE LATEST ALLEGATIONS ARE OUTRAGEOUS. SHE DIDN’T SPECIFY WHICH ONE. THE PRESIDENT HIMSELF APPARENTLY HINTING YESTERDAY HE DOESN’T KNOW WHY DR. JACKSON DEALS WITH ALL OF THIS AND TAKES ALL OF THIS, THOUGH HE STILL SUPPORTED HIM. DO YOU?>>I HAD A VERY GOOD MEETING WITH HIM LAST WEEK. HE ANSWERED A NUMBER OF QUESTIONS. WE TALKED ABOUT HIS STRATEGY IN FRONT OF THE COMMITTEE. I FELT THAT HE SHOULD HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY LAST WEEK TO DO THIS. OVER THE WEEKEND CHAIRMAN ISAACSON MADE A CONFERENCE CALL WITH A NUMBER OF REPUBLICANS. I UNDERSTAND RANKING MEMBER TESTER DID SAME THING WITH DEMOCRATS. CHAIRMAN WAS VERY HONEST WITH US, AND DISCUSSED A NUMBER OF UNSUBSTANTIATED ALLEGATIONS THAT HAVE BEEN MADE AGAINST THE ADMIRAL. HE LAID OUT IN SOME DETAIL THE TYPES OF ALLEGATIONS THAT WERE BEING MADE. MOST CERTAINLY IF THEY WERE FOUND TO BE TRUE, THEY WOULD BE OF REAL CONCERN BEFORE THE COMMITTEE. SO WE’RE GOING TO DO OUR DUE DILIGENCE. WE WOULD DO THAT WHETHER IT WAS REPUBLICAN NOMINEE OR DEMOCRAT NOMINEE. NEIL: SOME ALLEGATIONS INCLUDE OVERSUBSCRIBING CERTAIN DRUGS. THERE ARE CHARGES OF ANGRY, ALCOHOL-INDUCED BEHAVIOR. YOU KNOW FAR BETTER THAN I. IF ANY OF THOSE PROVE TRUE, WOULD YOU SAY, DOCTOR, STEP ASIDE?>>LET ME SAY WE DON’T KNOW, WE DON’T KNOW HOW MUCH IT IS TRUE OR NOT. WE’LL WAIT UNTIL THE INVESTIGATIONS ARE COMPLETE. THEN WE’LL MAKE OUR DECISIONS. MOST CERTAINLY ALLEGATIONS THAT HAVE BEEN MADE ARE VERY SERIOUS AND IN NUMBER OF CASES, BASED UPON WHO HAS MADE THE ALLEGATIONS AND BASED UPON WHAT THOSE ALLEGATIONS ARE, IT WOULD GIVE US SERIOUS CAUSE FOR WHETHER OR NOT HE WOULD BE THE RIGHT MAN FOR THE JOB. IT IS DELAYED. WE’LL CERTAINLY NOT PREJUDGE HIM BUT WE’LL NOT MOVE FORWARD WITHOUT FACTS BEING MADE KNOWN

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