The ink didn’t even have time to dry on the draft of the nuclear deal between the U.S., Iran, and 5 of our closest allied countries before the Republican presidential candidates began whining about the fact that President Obama is stronger on foreign policy than his predecessors.
Republicans are furious about this deal because it completely destroys three of their major talking points.
The first is that only Republicans can keep us safe, and that President Obama is a weak leader. He just did what no other US president has been able to do in three decades, and that is to sit down with Iranian leaders and work out a nuclear deal. BOTH Bush presidents have tried and failed to do this.
The second problem for Republicans is that it hurts their quest for endless war. That’s why we have people like Tom Cotton crying about appeasement. He’s so hungry for war that he wanted to sabotage these negotiations from the start. The same goes for Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz and Jeb Bush – these guys can’t get enough war. This is how they prove that they’re tough, macho guys to the rest of the world.
Then we have the military industrial complex problem for Republicans. Without an Iran War in sight, Republicans have nothing to promise their military contractor friends, so those campaign dollars are going to dry up.
Another problem the Republicans now face is that if this deal is a success, it will prove to American voters that you don’t have to bomb someone to get them to negotiate. We can act like adults and still get the job done.
Let’s look at the foreign policy credentials of some of the Republican candidates:
Scott Walker says that his handling of unions in Wisconsin has prepared him to take on ISIS.
Chris Christie went on a few foreign policy trips earlier this year where he spent his time in both the UK and the Middle East criticizing Obama – a move that turned off our allies overseas.
Ted Cruz still wants to invade Russia and says that Obama made a mistake by not taking action against Putin.
Marco Rubio’s first campaign ad featured Netanyahu speaking about the dangers of Iran with mushroom clouds in the background in order to attack Obama’s Iran Deal. It reminded us of the Daisy ad from decades ago.
Donald Trump told Bill O’Reilly that America should keep all the oil in Iraq because we were the “victors” in that conflict. He’s also bragged about renting a piece of land to Gaddaffi and then not letting him use it after he paid him for it.
Rick Perry referred to the government of Turkey – our allies against terrorism – as Islamic Terrorists. Perry has also advocated invading Mexico.
Rick Santorum said he wants to start an economic war with China.
This could go on forever, because none of these candidates have ever taken the time to learn about foreign policy, let alone to look at a globe to even learn where these countries are.