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Memo to GOP: Don’t cite Reagan’s record as ideal in U.S. relations with Iran

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You would think — wouldn’t you? — that Republicans would no longer be so foolish as to hold up Ronald Reagan as the perfect example of how a U.S. president should deal with Iran.

But you’d be wrong.

Consider, for example, the collective Republican reaction to the Obama administration’s successful diplomatic efforts to gain the release of four Americans held hostage by the Iranian regime.

Sen. Marco Rubio seemed to speak for his GOP colleagues when he said this:

When I become President of the United States, our adversaries around the world will know that America is no longer under the command of someone weak like Barack Obama. And it will be like Ronald Reagan where as soon as he took office, the hostages were released from Iran.

Yeah, sure, Sen. Rubio. Never mind that the facts don’t jibe with the theory that the Iranians released the hostages on the day Reagan became president because they were afraid he’d clobber them. More to the point is the indisputable record of the Reagan administration playing patty-cake with Iran.

Steve Benen EXPLAINS:

When the issue at hand deals with U.S. policy in Iran, and the release of Americans detained abroad, the Reagan example should pretty much be the last model Republicans should point to…

[O]fficials in the Reagan White House had the bright idea of illegally selling weapons to Iran in order to help finance an illegal war in Central America. It was one of the biggest scandals in American history, and much of Reagan’s national-security team ended up under criminal indictment. 

At one point in 1986, Reagan delivered a nationally televised address in which he looked at the camera and promised Americans the scandal wasn’t true. Four months later, he was forced to deliver another televised address, conceding the fact that his claims in the first one weren’t true. (Take a moment to imagine what would happen to President Obama under these circumstances.)

 

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1 Comment

  1. Steverino

    It was morning in America. Few cared what this B grade actor really did during his two terms in office.

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