Politics

Obama Speaks Out, Defends Iran Deal

| by Maura Turcotte

Despite opposition to the deal reached with Iran, President Obama remains firm defending and lauding the landmark agreement. In an interview with the New York Times Tuesday, Obama described the deal as "the most definitive path by which Iran will not get a nuclear weapon," CNN reports.

While many Republicans and even some Democrats have expressed skepticism about trusting Iran with even a small nuclear program, Obama sought to reassure the public that the deal relies more than on blind faith.

"This whole system that we built is not based on trust, it's based on a verifiable mechanism whereby every pathway that they have is shut off," the president told the New York Times, according to CNN.

Vice President Joe Biden is also working on the deal's defense: He recently attended a meeting with House Democrats to address their concerns. Afterwards, many Democrats indicated they were still not convinced, but they remained open to reading the deal in the 60-day review Congress has been granted, reports USA Today.

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"Congress needs to do its due diligence over the 60-day review period. Many should possibly take the opportunity to visit Iran. Many should take the opportunity to deal with the atomic agency that is going to be doing the investigations," said U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas to USA Today. "I think the question should be: Is this a once in a lifetime, serious opportunity to stop a potential nuclear adversary?"

While the fate of the deal is still up in the air, one positive has already emerged from the agreement. In his interview with the New York Times, Obama noted improving relations between Russia and the U.S. while the countries worked with other world powers to seal the deal.

"Putin and the Russian government compartmentalized on this in a way that surprised me," the president said, reports CNN.

"Part of our goal here is to show that diplomacy can work. It doesn't work perfectly -- it doesn't give us everything that we want," Obama explained, according to CNN. "We can't control every single event, but what we can do is shape events so that it's more likely that problems get solved, rather than less likely and that's the opportunity we have now."

Sources: CNN, USA Today / Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons