Exclusive for VSA by Steve Deace
Barack Obama has officially “achieved” lame duck status.
His credibility has now sunk so low that he managed to simultaneously split both political parties in half. And all over an (allegedly) free trade deal, which was supposed to provide the very opportunities a thrice-contracted economy during the so-called “Obama recovery” desperately needs.
I put “allegedly” in parentheses because the public wasn’t allowed to read the deal beforehand. We have no idea what’s in it other than by trusting the few politicians who have supposedly read it—beginning with Obama. Good luck with that.
Apparently those of us out here in the cheap seats aren’t the only ones who don’t trust the current occupant of the White House. Neither does much of the political class. Free trade is usually a 90 percent issue in the Republican Party, yet the GOP was split in two on what has become known as “Obamatrade.” For example, it’s not often you see stalwart conservatives Ted Cruz and Jeff Sessions on opposing sides, but that’s exactly what happened here.
With the GOP split on an issue they usually rally around, that left Obama to try and get his more protectionist party onboard. The president even made personal appeals to his fellow Democrats to trust him but it didn’t work. Democrat House Leader Nancy Pelosi led the fight in her caucus to oppose Obamatrade. Democrat Rep. Peter DeFazio even said Obama “tried to both guilt and then impugn their integrity” to get his own party’s backing.
In other words, Obama tried to demagogue Democrats the way he has Republicans for the past six years. And just like that, the emperor has no clothes.
Now it’s time for the political class to apply the same scrutiny to Obama’s looming Faustian bargain with Iran. The brilliant Daniel Horowitz writing for Conservative Review says “just when news of Obama’s alliance with Iran couldn’t get any worse, even more treacherous material has been exposed.”
Horowitz says U.N. monitors have “received no reports pointing out Iranian violations of sanctions even though some have unfolded in plain sight.”
The White House would have you believe that they will not lift sanctions on Iran until they comply with the terms of a potential nuclear agreement. The problem is they have already de facto lifted sanctions, not just through the $700 million per month in unfrozen assets given to Iran for stringing us along in these negotiations, but by turning a blind eye to their violation of travel bans and importing nuclear materials.
Horowitz notes an Iranian general who has links to terrorist forces has recently been seen all over the Middle East, in clear and obvious violation of his travel ban. Furthermore, Iran is reported to be preemptively negotiating contracts with OPEC and other international oil companies/consortiums “with the full confidence the sanctions will be lifted irrespective of their behavior or willingness to cooperate with nuclear disarmament.”
Of course, news of Iranian dishonesty and subterfuge will shock no one not working at the White House or State Department. Yet despite Iran’s well-earned reputation for deceit, the Associated Press reports Obama will essentially free 23 of Iran’s 24 banks from all sanctions almost from the deal’s get-go, despite previous promises to “leave the sanctions in place.”
The more we learn about Obama’s Iran deal, the worse it looks. Now it’s time for Congress to step in once more.
A bad trade deal could cost us jobs and drive up our trade deficit. While that’s not something to take lightly, it doesn’t threaten us existentially like appeasing a rogue, terrorist regime such as Iran does. Therefore, if politicians on both sides of the aisle were willing to put their differences aside to stop Obamatrade, it’s time for the same thing to happen here as well. Our political class should intervene to stop a sham “deal” that could free Iran to wreak even more havoc.
Not wanting to aid and abet Iran shouldn’t be a partisan issue. There are only two reasons for Congress’ refusal to act here and neither of them are good—gutlessness from Republicans or Democrats putting party loyalty ahead of what’s best for our interests and our allies.
The defeated trade deal and the Iranian bargain that should follow in its defunct footsteps each have one thing in common—Obama. If we can’t trust him on trade, why should we trust him with the most strategically important section of the world at stake?
(Steve Deace is a nationally-syndicated talk show host and also the author of the new book “Rules for Patriots: How Conservatives Can Win Again.” You can “like” him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @SteveDeaceShow.)