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Romney Campaign Press Release - On Iran, President Obama Has Led From Behind

July 31, 2012

"Since taking office three and a half years ago, President Obama has allowed Iran's nuclear ambitions to proceed unimpeded. As Israel's prime minister recently made clear, the Obama Administration's efforts haven't made an 'iota' of difference. The president's refusal to take a tough stance when it comes to Iran has imperiled our allies and jeopardized our national security." —Ryan Williams, Romney Campaign Spokesman

Earlier Today, The White House Again Claimed That Sanctions Against Iran Are Having A "Significant Impact":

Ben Rhodes, White House Deputy National Security Advisor For Strategic Communications: "Sanctions Are Having A Significant Impact On Iran And Its Economy." (Zeke Miller, "White House Breaks With Netanyahu: Sanctions Are Working," BuzzFeed, 7/31/12)

Yesterday, White House Spokesperson Josh Earnest Said President Obama's Work Has Led To "Crippling Sanctions" Being Placed On The Iranian Regime. EARNEST: "Here we stand, three years later, because of the President's leadership on the international stage, he's marshaled international support and the international community is now supporting a united front to the Iranians about the importance of living up to their international obligations in when it comes to their nuclear program. ... As a result of that security council resolution and other actions, crippling sanctions have been put in place against the Iranian regime that have resulted in the Iranian regime acknowledging the economic toll those sanctions have taken." (White House Press Briefing, 7/30/12)

President Obama, In March 2012: "That's Why We Have Worked So Diligently To Set Up The Most Crippling Sanctions Ever With Respect To Iran." (President Barack Obama, Remarks, Washington, DC, 3/5/12)

But Despite The White House's Claims, The Evidence To The Contrary Is Clear:

AFP: "Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Said On Sunday That International Sanctions Have So Far Made No Impact On Iran's Nuclear Programme And That A 'Strong And Credible' Military Threat Was Needed." "Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that international sanctions have so far made no impact on Iran's nuclear programme and that a 'strong and credible' military threat was needed. 'We have to be honest and say that all the sanctions and diplomacy so far have not set back the Iranian programme by one iota,' he said on meeting White House hopeful Mitt Romney. 'I believe that we need a strong and credible military threat, coupled with the sanctions, to have a chance to change that situation.'" ("Iran Unmoved By Sanctions: Israel's Netanyahu," AFP, 7/29/12)

  • Netanyahu: "All The Sanctions And Diplomacy So Far Have Not Set Back The Iranian Program By One Iota." NETANYAHU: "We have to be honest and say that all the sanctions and diplomacy so far have not set back the Iranian program by one iota. And that's why I believe that we need a strong and credible military threat coupled with the sanctions to have a chance to change that situation." ("Romney Voices Aggressive Stance Toward Iran," The Associated Press, 7/29/12)

"U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta Acknowledged Monday That Increasingly Stiff International Sanctions Have Yet To Compel Iran To Give Up Its Nuclear Ambitions." (Robert Burns, "Panetta: Sanctions Not Moving Iran Away From Nukes," The Associated Press, 7/30/12)

The Obama Administration Actively Worked "Behind The Scenes To Water Down Congressional Language That Would Impose Crippling Sanctions On The Central Bank Of Iran (CBI)." "President Barack Obama's administration is working behind the scenes to water down congressional language that would impose crippling sanctions on the Central Bank of Iran (CBI). The Obama administration sent to Congress this week a list of requested changes to the sanctions language found in the Senate's version of the defense authorization bill, which was passed last week. ... The administration wants to delay the implementation of sanctions not related to oil purchases from 60 to 180 days, and wants to water down the severity of sanctions measures if and when they are put into effect." (Josh Rogin, "Administration Tries To Water Down Iran Sanctions Legislation,"  The Cable, 12/6/11)

The Obama Administration Has Now Granted Waivers To "All Twenty Of Iran's Major Trading Partners," Including China, For Their Efforts To Reduce Iranian Oil Imports Ahead Of The Sanctions.  "Though economic sanctions still haven't slowed or stopped Iran's nuclear drive, the Obama Administration has decided to make them even weaker. The Iran sanctions regime is looking like the U.S. tax code—filled with loopholes. It's so weak, in fact, that all 20 of Iran's major trading partners are now exempt from them. We've arrived at a kind of voodoo version of sanctions. They look real, insofar as Congress forced them into a bill President Obama had to sign in December. The Administration has spoken incantations about their powers. But if you're a big oil importer in China, India or 18 other major economies, the sanctions are mostly smoke." (Editorial, "Obama's Iran Loopholes," The Wall Street Journal, 7/2/12)

The New York Times: Efforts So Far "Have Failed To Force [Iran] To Stop Enriching Uranium. Negotiations Aimed At Getting Iran To Give Up Its Nuclear Ambitions Have Stalled." "Although the sanctions have cut seriously into Iran's oil exports, and its currency has plunged by more than 40 percent against the dollar since last year, they have failed to force the country to stop enriching uranium. Negotiations aimed at getting Iran to give up its nuclear ambitions have stalled. Mr. Panetta and the Obama administration remain hopeful that a sweeping new round of sanctions imposed in June, meant to cut Iran off from the global oil market, will further increase the pressure." (Elisabeth Bumiller, "Panetta Urges More Time For Economic Pressure On Iran To Work," The New York Times, 7/30/12)

The Washington Post: "The Danger That Iran Will Become A Nuclear Power Is Growing, Not Diminishing." "The report underlines the fact that, contrary to the impression often promoted by the Obama administration, the danger that Iran will become a nuclear power is growing, not diminishing." (Editorial, "The Undimmed Danger Of Iran's Nuclear Program," The Washington Post, 9/6/11)

Mitt Romney, Romney Campaign Press Release - On Iran, President Obama Has Led From Behind Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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