Proponents of the Iran agreement have made a lot of silly arguments in support of the deal but none more ridiculous than the only alternative to the agreement is war. The extension of that argument is that anyone who opposes the deal actually wants war with Iran — a ludicrous construct born out of truly magical and spurious thinking.
The White House made that point again in a statement criticizing the joint rally to be held by Donald Trump and Ted Cruz September 9 in Washington.
The White House on Friday blasted Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and Ted Cruz for planning a protest against the Iran deal on Capitol Hill, labeling it a “pro-war rally.”
“Senator Cruz and Donald Trump have announced they are going to hold a big pro-war rally on the steps of the United States Capitol,” press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters.
The phrase is a familiar one for Earnest, who also used it to dismiss an anti-Iran deal event organized by Cruz in July.
The spokesman noted former Vice President Dick Cheney’s plan to slam the Iran deal in a speech next week.
“The same people making the same arguments against the Iran deal were the people who advocated for us getting into the war in Iraq in 2002 and 2003,” Earnest said. “The fault lines of this debate should be familiar to anybody who has been covering American politics for the past 12 or 13 years.”
Supporters and opponents of the Iran deal are ramping up lobbying efforts to sway lawmakers and the public ahead of a key congressional vote in mid-September.
The White House has sought to frame the debate as a choice between diplomacy or military force to cut off Tehran’s path to a nuclear weapon.
Opponents, such as Cruz, say the agreement doesn’t permanently prevent Iran from building a bomb. And they argue the country will use billions of dollars in sanctions relief to destabilize the region and fund terrorist groups that threaten Israel.
The Trump-Cruz event will take place on Sept. 9 on the West Front of the Capitol, giving two of the biggest names in the GOP presidential field a megaphone to attack the deal.
Cheney’s speech will take place one day earlier at the conservative American Enterprise Institute in Washington.
What possible connection does support for the Iraq War have with the Iran deal? “The same people making the same arguments…”? In fact, the half or more of the Democratic Party that were making the pro-Iraq War arguments are supporting the Iran agreement. And unlike the other major pieces of legislation the Obama claims credit for that were passed by a straight party line vote, opposition to the Iran deal is deep, and broad, and bi-partisan.
The president is trying to make this a partisan issue, despite the fact that in opposing the deal, there are already 14 more Democrats in the House and two more in the Senate than there were Republicans supporting Obamacare.
The “pro-war rally” smear is typical of the administration’s argument to support the deal. But in a few years, we are very likely to discover which side was working to avoid a war, and which side was stupid enough to encourage one.