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Rep. Nadler Statement on President Trump's Actions Escalating Hostilities with Iran

Washington, January 8, 2020

Washington, D.C. —Today, Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) released the following statement on President Trump’s actions escalating hostilities with Iran and risking the safety and security of America and our allies:

“President Trump not only represents a serious and pressing threat to our democracy, his actions risk the safety and security of our citizens, our interests, and our allies—including Israel—across the globe.  Whether it is out of personal bravado or part of an effort to deflect and distract from his own failures and embarrassments, President Trump has continuously undermined our national security by acting recklessly and without any legal authority or legitimate reason.  And he has done so without providing Congress or the American people the legal justification to take such dangerous and provocative action that puts our country on the brink of another war in the Middle East.

“In May 2018, President Trump unilaterally pulled the United States out of the Iran nuclear agreement, without the support of our allies or any agreement from the Iranians that they would continue to comply with the strict restrictions placed on them by the JCPOA.  As a result, we found ourselves on the outside looking in, unable to enforce the restrictions placed on Iran and in a significantly worse position without the backing of our allies who were necessary for pressuring Iran to the table.  While not perfect, the JCPOA was successful in avoiding the existential threat posed by a nuclear armed Iran by 8-15 years — putting us in a better position going forward with more intelligence on Iran’s nuclear program and widespread support from our allies to hold Iran accountable.  Now, the security and position of America in the world is substantially more dangerous and Iran has renewed its pursuit of the necessary materials for producing a nuclear weapon.

“This is par for the course: President Trump undermines our national security by escalating conflicts and putting our country at risk, he lies to the American people and keeps information from Congress needed for holding him accountable, and when the world strives to pull us back from armed conflict and real imminent danger instigated by the President, he claims credit for solving a problem that—as a result of his actions—is actually more volatile and more threatening.

“Today, Iran is no longer complying with the nuclear agreement, having announced that they will begin to enrich uranium at higher levels.  Today, our efforts to combat ISIS are in a far worse position, having alienated many of our coalition forces in the region.  Today, American citizens and U.S. interests face real threats to their safety and security.  Today, Israel is at serious risk of an imminent attack from Iran and its proxies.  Today, the President of the United States has claimed victory over Iran when the truth is that his actions have put the world at direct risk of war.  His rash decisions have made America less safe.

“President Trump threatens our rule of law, he threatens the integrity of our democracy, and he threatens global security through his continued actions.  Congress must fulfill its duty to ensure the President complies with the law, to protect our citizens and defend our security from needlessly being put in harm’s way, and to guard against the erosion of our values as a nation.  We cannot allow the President’s power to go unchecked, and I will continue to uphold my responsibilities to my constituents, to the country, and to the Constitution.”
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