Rhode Island’s all Democratic Washington, D.C. delegation criticized President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the Iran nuclear agreement, but Republican U.S. Senate aspirant Bob Flanders hailed the president’s stance.
Rhode Island’s senior senator, Jack Reed, said that the nuclear deal forged under the administration of President Barack Obama “is working” and should not be nixed.
“President Trump is ignoring the advice of his top generals and military leaders and putting electoral interests above American’s security interests,” said Reed in a statement. “By unilaterally abandoning this accord, he is undermining U.S. diplomacy and leadership and making us less safe.”
“We must continue to put international pressure on Iran over its abuse of human rights, ballistic missle development efforts and other destabilizing activities in the region. Unfortunately, President Trump has just made all of these objectives more difficult to achieve.”
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse also took a shot at Trump. “This is a reckless –and, it appears reflexive –decision,” said Whitehouse. Whitehouse said the president’s move undermines the United States efforts to end Iran’s other hostile behaviors, “such as its ballistic missile program and support for terrorism and violent proxies across the Middle East.”
Whitehouse also said, “It sends a signal to everyone with whom we negotiate to bring about a more peaceful world, not the least North Korea, that the United States doesn’t keep its word. That is a perilous message to send.”
Robert Flanders, one of the two Republicans running for the U.S. Senate nomination to oppose Whitehouse in the November election, had a different view. Flanders said he supports Trump’s decision.
“For too long the U.S. has allowed Iran to continue development of its nuclear weapons program without suffering any consequence,” said Flanders. He applauded new economic sanctions on Iran, saying it will allow the U.S. to “negotiate a better, more enforceable agreement to protect the world’s safety.”
Rhode Island’s two U.S. House members –Democrats Jim Langevin and David Cicilline- both also took issue with the president. “The Iran nuclear deal provides for comprehensive monitoring by the international community and there remains no evidence that Iran is violating its commitments,” said Langevin.
“The fact is that the nuclear deal is working,” said Langevin.
Said Cicilline, “This will make us less respected across the world, and it does nothing to make us safer at home.”