US Senator Mike Rounds’ Weekly Column: No Deal is Better Than a Bad Deal


 No Deal is Better Than a Bad Deal
By Senator Mike Rounds
July 31, 2015

MikeRounds official SenateSeveral weeks ago, President Obama submitted part of the nuclear agreement with Iran to Congress for review. The U.S. negotiators, including Secretary of State John Kerry, have not even seen the details of the side agreements reached between the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Iran. I have been closely examining the proposal and asking important questions regarding specific details. Unfortunately, the more I learn about the President’s agreement, the more concerned I am about the risks it poses to our long-term national security.

Earlier this year, President Obama claimed that no deal with Iran regarding their nuclear program would be better than a bad deal, and I couldn’t agree more. Yet from what we know so far, it appears to be a very bad deal that not only fails to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, it emboldens them through tens of billions of dollars in sanctions relief, a phased out lifting of United Nations arms and missile embargoes and allows them to test more advanced centrifuges after 10 years.

I recently had an opportunity to question administration officials about the deal during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing. During that hearing, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter confirmed to me that under this deal, he could not rule out Iran acquiring an intercontinental ballistic missile in ten years. This means that Iran would have the capability of producing a weapon that could reach U.S. soil in a decade. These troubling comments come after General Paul Selva, the President’s nominee to be Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told me during a separate hearing that Iran remains the leading state sponsor of terrorism, and sanctions relief agreed to in the nuclear deal could be used by Iran to continue sponsoring terrorism.

I’m concerned that this deal puts too much trust in Iran – a country that has violated more than 20 international agreements in the past, continues to be the largest state sponsor of terrorism and currently has imprisoned four U.S. citizens.

Congress is currently reviewing the deal and will likely vote on a resolution of disapproval in mid-September. I’ve said all along that any deal with Iran must prevent Iran from ever obtaining a nuclear weapon, and it appears the President’s proposed deal fails to accomplish that goal. In essence, this agreement not only releases tens of billions of dollars in resources to Iran for use in terror activities, it also authorizes the relaxation of the arms embargo and the limitations on Iran’s ability to get an intercontinental ballistic missile while legally allowing them access to advance nuclear capabilities at the end of a ten year period. That is the end result, even if they do not cheat in the meantime.

A nuclear Iran will increase the level of unrest in an already-unstable Middle East, threaten many of our allies and put U.S. lives at risk. The president was correct when he said that “no deal is better than a bad deal” with Iran. It’s time for him to realize what is in front of him.


6 thoughts on “US Senator Mike Rounds’ Weekly Column: No Deal is Better Than a Bad Deal”

  1. Senator:
    Your capital “C” Conservative party hasn’t a shred of credibility when it comes to making political predictions and your validity to do so on this vital agreement is nil, sir. The list of things you said were “gonna happen” is vast; nonexistent gun grabs, economic collapse, Doctor resignations, Sharia law, death panels, $7 a gallon gas and FEMA concentration camps. God frowns that you would try to make political hay by predicting another 9/11 attack. You Conservatives couldn’t predict snow in January. This deal will pass and your side will be just so much wind on the prairie.

    1. Porter, if you consider Rounds a Conservative then you are as wacky as Paula Hawks.Your candidate for US Representative.

  2. Proud of our senator isnt this the guy who took fed funds to balance the State budget.Isn’t this the guy who doesn’t fund education so we lose one third of our teachers out of state to better wages.Proud yeah right.

  3. For some reason Porter is talking about predictions on this thread rather than the substance of what Senator Rounds wrote. Another non sequitur from him but we are used to that by now. If you have any doubt this is a bad idea just think about an analogy. Imagine the mayor of a town tells Jesse James he wants the James gang to guard the bank. But the James gang has a history of robbing banks. No matter. The mayor insists that they can inspect the bank at any time to be sure it has not been robbed. The James gang agrees as long as they have 24 hours notice of an inspection. The mayor insists the James gang not rob other banks in other cities. The James gang refuses saying that has nothing to do with the agreement. Then after the agreement is signed the James gang says they reserve the right to rob the bank because they never actually agreed not to. Would you agree to that? Porter might, but we expect that from him.

  4. This sponsor of state terrorism is also helping us keep ISIS at bay. It feels disingenuous to rant about our relationship with Iran when we consistently foster a friendship with Saudi Arabia, the very nation who spent over a billion dollars funding Al Qaeda, al-Shabab, etc. The fact of the matter is that many intelligence professionals from the US have supported making a deal with Iran. Even though the hardliners are the largest political presence, the young of the country are becoming increasingly westernized and this deal would only increase the influence of the west in their nation.

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