Sec. of State John Kerry ripped Senate Republicans for spreading false information via their unconstitutional letter to Iran.
On Face The Nation, Sec. Kerry said:
What I do know is that this letter was absolutely calculated to interfere directly with these negotiations. It specifically inserts itself directly to the leader of another country saying don’t negotiate with these guys because we’re going to change this. Which by the way, is not only contrary to the Constitution with respect to the Executive’s right to negotiate, but it is incorrect. Because they can not change an executive agreement. So it’s false information, and directly calculated to interfere, and basically saying don’t negotiate with them. You’ve got to negotiate with five hundred and thirty-five members of Congress. That’s unprecedented. Unprecedented.
Kerry was asked if he was going to apologize for the letter. He answered, “Not on your life. I’m not going to apologize for an unconstitutional and unthought out action from somebody who has been in the Senate for sixty some days.”
Kerry was correct. Senate Republicans are ignoring the Constitution and making up their own rules as far as rewriting any agreement with Iran is concerned. Any agreement that is reached will have been reached with multiple governments. The Senate simply does not have the constitutional authority to approve and/or rewrite agreements.
The main Republican argument against Kerry is that he went to Nicaragua as a new U.S. Senator in the 1980s and met with the communist dictator Daniel Ortega. The problem with the Republican telling of the tale is that they are leaving out some key facts.
Original news accounts at the time state, “Within weeks of taking office in 1985, he was off to Nicaragua, accompanied by reporters on a 36-hour, self-appointed fact-finding mission with another freshman, Democratic Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa. Congressional Democrats had accused the White House of exaggerating the communist threat posed by the Sandinista regime. So the two senators were publicly castigated when — just days after meeting with Daniel Ortega and other leaders of the regime — the Sandinistas climbed aboard a plane to Moscow to cement their Soviet ties.”
In 1985, John Kerry went to Nicaragua as an individual senator. He wasn’t speaking for the Senate. Kerry was on a fact-finding mission related to allegations about the Reagan administration’s behavior in Nicaragua. There is a difference between what Kerry did in the 1980s, and a group of Republican senators approaching a foreign government for the express purpose of undermining the President Of The United States.
Editorial boards across the country agree with Kerry that Republicans got the Constitution wrong in their letter to Iran.
Sec. Kerry will have to go back to the negotiating table and explain to the Iranians and our allies who are taking part in the negotiations that the Senate Republicans are idiots who don’t understand their own Constitution.
The Sec. of State made it clear that he will not tolerate Republican attacks of sabotage that are designed to destroy American foreign policy.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association