Watch President Barack Obama’s full interview this Sunday on CNN’s “GPS with Fareed Zakaria” at 10 a.m. EST.
President Barack Obama is standing by his comparison between Iranian hardliners and Republicans who he says are dead set on derailing any nuclear deal.
“What I said is absolutely true, factually,” Obama told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria in an interview that will air in full Sunday.
“The truth of the matter is, inside of Iran, the people most opposed to the deal are the Revolutionary Guard, the Quds Force, hardliners who are implacably opposed to any cooperation with the international community,” Obama said.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell promised that the Senate would debate the Iran deal next month. He also knocked Obama on Thursday for claiming the only option to avoid war with Iran is a deal.
“That’s an absurd argument, and it’s the one they’ve made from the very beginning, that it’s either what the President negotiates with the Iranians or it’s war,” McConnell said. “That’s never been the alternative.”
But Obama said the Republicans’ unwillingness to consider any deal put them in league with Iranian factions opposed to the deal.
“The reason that Mitch McConnell and the rest of the folks in his caucus who opposed this jumped out and opposed this before they even read it, before it was even posted, is reflective of a ideological commitment not to get a deal done,” Obama said. “In that sense they do have much more in common with the hardliners who are much more satisfied with the status quo.”