Friday, May 24, 2024

GOP Blasts Biden’s Pick for Israel Ambassador, Tied to Iran Nuke Deal

'The ATM to the Iranian Ayatollah...'

(Luis CornelioHeadline USA) Senate Republicans raised concerns about President Joe Biden’s appointee for U.S. ambassador to Israel, Jack Lew, citing his role in the contentious Iran nuclear deal during the Obama administration, Politico reported. 

In a heated confirmation hearing, which was briefly disrupted by pro-Hamas demonstrators on Wednesday, members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee grilled Lew for the Iran nuclear deal, which Republicans argue has made it easier for the terrorism-sponsoring country to obtain a nuclear weapon. 

“We need this thing filled. The problem I have is it needs to be filled with the right person,” said Sen. Jim Risch, R-Ohio, the top Republican in the committee. “The only thing worse than having it empty would be having the wrong person there, and I have some issues in that regard.”

Risch added, “This whole thing’s about Iran and holding hands with Iran under the table doesn’t work for me.”

Lew served as the Treasury secretary during the Obama administration, where he lifted sanctions against Iran in exchange for limits on the nuclear program pertaining to Iran, Politico reported.

The contentious deal came to fruition in 2015 but was withdrawn in 2018 by former President Donald Trump. In recent weeks, Iran has come under scrutiny over its alleged role in the inhumane terrorist attack by Hamas, an ally of Iran, against Israel. 

According to Politico, Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., called Lew the “wrong person” for the job and referred to him as “the ATM to the Iranian Ayatollah.” 

Lew attempted to defend his contentious role with Iran, claiming, “I believe that my reputation as somebody who stands with Israel is beyond question.” 

Later in the hearing, Lew condemned the Iranian regime, adding, “They will spend their first dollars on evil. They’re not going to stop doing this. And Iran is a malign force.” 

During the hearing, a pro-Hamas heckler broke into the hearing, shouting, “Our families are dying, we need a ceasefire now. Ceasefire now.”

Senate Republicans are unable to block the nomination as Democrats enjoy a majority in the upper chamber of Congress. 

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