The Iran nuclear deal has upset people and politicians all over the world since it was announced. New revelations have now galvanized House Republicans to take action. Obama’s top White House adviser Ben Rhodes is now in their crosshairs.
Rhodes revealed some poorly-chosen comments about the Obama administration’s marketing of the nuclear deal with Iran.
After hearing those comments, House Republicans demanded that Rhodes testify on Capitol Hill.
There is no doubt the administration wanted the backdoor dealings on the Iran nuclear deal to slide into oblivion. That isn’t going to happen now. Republican leaders of the House Oversight Committee want Rhodes to testify about those backdoor dealings, committee spokeswoman M.J. Henshaw says. That will give Washington reporters something else to do in this election 2016 season.
Republicans are probably happy that Rhodes, the White House’s deputy national security adviser for strategic communications doesn’t know when to keep his mouth shut.
This is the kind of thing that happens to people who think they are smarter than everyone else. At some time, they get the urge to tell everyone how much smarter they really are.
Congressional Scrutiny on Iran Nuclear Deal
The Republican request for his presence was issued Wednesday. By Friday, Rhodes had not responded, but Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) can issue a subpoena to ensure he appears.
Although Rhodes did not respond, the White House did. White House spokesman Eric Schultz accused House Republicans of trying to pick a new fight over the Iran nuclear accord.
The White House, Democrats Protest Too Much
And why shouldn’t they, since no publicly elected official voted on the controversial “agreement.”
Schultz issued a written statement in which he said, “The Iran deal was debated and scrutinized for months last year. Republicans had vowed to block it, could not muster the votes to do so, and are now seeking to relitigate that old political fight.”
Shultz makes it sound as though there was a debate in the Congress, but there was no debate. He could have left it at that, but in an attempt to rub salt into the wounds, he also said, “But with all the serious issues stuck in Congress right now, like preparing for Zika’s arrival, helping Puerto Rico through their financial crisis, providing assistance to the people of Flint, or combatting the opioid epidemic, it is a shame that Chairman Chaffetz is choosing to take a page out of Darrell Issa’s playbook to distract from all the work they should be doing.”
This outburst from the White House certainly makes it appear they are hiding something, and they want to keep it hidden.
To prove that there really is something they want to hide, Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), the oversight panel’s top Democrat, called the GOP actions a “break from normal notice rules” that amounted to “reactionary grandstanding.”
Cummings wasn’t through yet. “It seems fairly clear what this really is: a partisan rush to attack Ben Rhodes just to chase cheap headlines rather than a substantive review of foreign policy objectives,” he said in a statement.
Remembering back a little, it was Cummings who cried bloody murder over the Benghazi hearings, when they tried to cover up that episode.
Unfortunately for Cummings and The White House, Rhodes was quoted boasting about how they created an “echo chamber” of experts and journalists supportive of the deal.
Thanks to Rhodes’ blabbing to journalists, the cat is out of the bag, and Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) says the administration “essentially misled the American people.”
Eric Schultz was not finished though. He said, “The facts and substance of the Iran deal are not in question, it has done exactly what we said it would, and the world is a safer place for it.”
It seems The White House is rewriting history. In fact, the majority of members in both Houses rejected the agreement and never had a chance to vote on it.
Perhaps Eric was in a parallel universe when he heard the debate going on.