Republicans, Trump campaign make Iran cash an election issue
The Republican party and the Trump Campaign have alleged that the USD 400 million the Obama Administration sent to Iran coinciding with the release of four imprisoned Americans was part of a ransom deal and have sought a full investigation into it.
"This administration has embarrassed our country as no administration has before, going so far as to fund Islamic terror through cash payments to Iran," Stephen Miller, senior policy advisor to the Trump Campaign, said yesterday.
"Nothing less than a full investigation is required, and if email-destroying Hillary Clinton can't break from Obama on this then she is even more corrupt than anyone imagined," Miller said.
House Speaker Paul Ryan said the report confirmed his longstanding suspicion that the administration paid a ransom in exchange for Americans unjustly detained in Iran.
Ryan was referring to a Wall Street Journal report which stated that the US secretly organised an "airlift of USD 400 million" in hard cash to Iran that coincided with the release of four Americans detained in Tehran.
"It would also mark another chapter in the ongoing saga of misleading the American people to sell this dangerous nuclear deal. Yet again, the public deserves an explanation of the lengths this administration went to in order to accommodate the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism," Ryan said.
Senator John McCain, Chairman of Senate Armed Services Committee said the Obama Administration's airlift of USD 400 million in cash to Iran is disturbing, but hardly surprising given its long record of concessions to America's adversaries.
"Whatever the Administration may claim, it is clear that this payment was a ransom for Americans held hostage in Iran," McCain said.
"Sounds a lot like a ransom payment to me," said House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy.
Administration officials said it was 'coincidental' that Iran released hostages on the same day. Iranian officials described the money as a ransom. Something is terribly wrong when it's easier to trust Iranian officials than the President's Administration, he said.
"This reckless arrangement is not only a major breach of longstanding US policy, it also means millions of dollars potentially finding their way into the pockets of terrorist organisations while putting a price on the head of every American," alleged Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus.
"This secret deal with Iran only shows how comfortable the Obama Administration is hiding the truth from the American people," he said.
Senator Marco Rubio, a former presidential candidate, in a statement announced his intention to introduce legislation stopping the Obama Administration's ransom payment to Iran.
"Iran is the world's foremost state sponsor of terrorism.
It is disgusting that the Obama Administration would even contemplate providing almost USD 2 billion to a terrorist- sponsoring regime as an illicit ransom payment. As the Administration has stated in its own hostage policy, paying hostage-takers endangers American citizens," he said.