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October 12, 2012 8:07 am

Biden Touts Iran Sanctions, Ryan Notes Admin Tried to Weaken Them

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Vice President Joe Biden and Congressman Paul Ryan at their Oct. 11 debate. Photo: YouTube screenshot.

While U.S. Vice President Joe Biden used his Oct. 11 debate with Congressman Paul Ryan (R-WI) to tout the current administration’s Iran sanctions as “the most crippling sanctions in the history of sanctions,” Ryan noted the administration’s efforts to weaken those sanctions before they were passed.

“The Administration has been blocking sanctions for years,” said Ryan, presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s running mate. “When [President] Barack Obama was elected, [Iran] had enough fissile material—nuclear material to make one bomb. Now they have enough for five. They’re racing toward a nuclear weapon. They’re four years closer toward a nuclear weapons capability.”

President Obama waited until New Year’s weekend to sign sanctions that were passed by the U.S. Senate 100-0 on Dec. 2, 2011, and at the time said he would treat them as “non-binding” if they interfere with his constitutional authority.

Biden posed the following in response to Ryan: “Imagine had we let the Republican Congress work out the sanctions. You think there’s any possibility the entire world would have joined us, Russia and China, all of our allies?”

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Intelligence and military officials in the U.S. and Israel “are absolutely in the same exact place in terms of how close the Iranians are to getting a nuclear weapon,” Biden said, noting that the Iranians “are a good ways away.”

Ryan, however, said the Iranians “see this administration trying to water down sanctions in Congress for over two years, see the U.S. wanting more space with our ally Israel.”

“They see President Obama in New York City the same day Bibi Netanyahu is and he, instead of meeting with him, goes on a daily talk show… When they see us putting daylight between ourselves and our allies in Israel, that gives them encouragement,” Ryan said.

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  • Joseph

    In their e-mail forwarding this issue, Algemeiner refered to this story as “Iran: Biden’s Debate Lie”. Can Algemeiner clarify what exactly is the lie they were talking about?

  • TwoGuard

    These sanctions are victimizing the everyday citizens of Iran for a nuclear weapon that both U.S. and Israeli intelligence say their government hasn’t even decided to build.
    “A Plea from Saeed in Iran: ‘Please help us.’ ” http://bit.ly/RTrC64

    • arnold levine

      The ones victimizing ordinary Iranians everyday are the Mullahs as evidenced by the brutal crackdowns that have gone on in the past and are still going on barely reported by our media. I understand why Obama would try to lie about the intent of the the Mullahs with respect to the making of the bomb, it is an election year and the Mullah’s progress underscores one of the many failures of his foreign policy. But where do you get your inside information on Israeli intelligence? Perhaps from Joe Biden and not from the Prime Minister of Israel who made an impassioned speech before the UN describing how close the Mullahs are to a bomb.

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