Obama tries to win American Jewish leaders on Iran deal
President Barack Obama told US Jewish leaders Friday that “the core commitment we [and Israel] have to each other is sacrosanct and it is non-partisan. It always has been and it always will be.”
In a webcast for selling the nuclear accord with Iran ahead of the vote in Congress, he reiterated that the deal “doesn’t rely on trust, it relies on verification” and that supporting it does not require trusting Iran’s intentions. He promised to continue to push back forcefully against terrorist activity or other destabilizing acts in the region. “We are not normalizing relations with Iran,” he said.
Steven Greenberg, head of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, joked: “Our people, as you know Mr. President, over the years there have been a lot of tyrants who have threatened us. And unfortunately, we have to take them seriously. I know you appreciate that.”
Fielding this and other questions, Obama said he doesn’t take vitriolic rhetoric coming out of Tehran seriously and promised opponents of the deal, “We’ll still be playing golf and they’ll be over to the [White House Passover] seder dinner next year.”