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Walker and Bush talk tough on Iran in bid for Adelson’s millions

US Politics
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The MSM is highlighting the fact that Governor Scott Walker has promised to take military action against Iran on his first day as president, if that is called for.Last night Chris Matthews mocked Scott Walker for his comments. The Washington Post is holding Walker’s statement up for scorn– as well as Jeb Bush’s own vows to undo the deal. Today on National Public Radio, the host said that “many Republican candidates have said they would scotch [the Iran deal] if they get into office.”

The press is leaving out the most important element of these statements. They have a rational basis: as auditions for Sheldon Adelson’s money and the donations of other neoconservative pro-Israel billionaires. A year and a half ago, Sheldon Adelson called on President Obama to nuke Iran.

That’s the pressure in the Republican Party. It’s the Republican Jewish Coalition sounding one hawkish note after another against the deal, it’s Bill Kristol working alongside AIPAC to try and defeat the deal: they are all using money as a lever to move these candidates. AIPAC has said that it will spend as much as $40 million opposing the deal; it spent a record $1.67 million opposing the deal earlier this year. Last night their ad against it was on the NBC Nightly News. Republican candidates need some of those millions to mount a serious campaign. And Jeb Bush is still hobbled by the fact that he has James Baker as a foreign policy adviser– Baker who has opposed Israeli settlements and spoke at J Street. That’s why Bush has thrown Baker under the bus, and why Bush is now trying to recover from another realist mistake, when he said that the Iran deal is not reversible. It is why Lindsey Graham has joked that he will have an all-Jewish cabinet, because that is the source of his funding; and it is why Marco Rubio stakes out hardline positions on Iran, because he has the backing of Paul Singer and Norman Braman, the man who went to Israel with him in 2010 the minute he was elected.

Below is a timeline of Walker and Jeb Bush’s statements about killing the Iran deal and attacking Iran, as reported by Kristol’s publication, the Weekly Standard:

Scott Walker, announcement speech July 13:

He would “terminate the bad deal with Iran on the very first day in office, put in place crippling sanctions and convince our allies to do the same.”

Jeb Bush, July 17:

“One thing that I won’t do is just say, as a candidate, ‘I’m going to tear up the agreement on the first day.’ That’s great, that sounds great but maybe you ought to check in with your allies first, maybe you ought to appoint a secretary of state, maybe secretary of defense, you might want to have your team in place, before you take an act like that.”

Mike Doran of Hudson Institute:

Jeb Bush is caving on Iran already — won’t commit to rolling back Obama’s Iran deal

The Walker campaign released a statement blasting Bush:

“We don’t need more information, we don’t need to wait to confirm the next Secretary of State, we need decisive leadership and we need it now.

July 18, Walker made the attack himself:

I believe that a president shouldn’t wait to act until they put a cabinet together or an extended period of time,” Walker said. “I believe they should be prepared to act on the very first day they take office. It’s very possible – God forbid, but it’s very possible – that the next president could be called to take aggressive actions, including military action, on the first day in office. And I don’t want a president who is not prepared to act on day one. So, as far as me, as far as my position, I’m going to be prepared to be president on day one.”

Bush flipflops, in statement to the Weekly Standard:

“I have repeatedly said [it] is a terrible deal. Congress should reject it and it would be best to do so before Iran is given more than $100 billion in sanctions relief that they can use to further destabilize the region. Should it be upheld, as President I would begin immediately to responsibly get us out of this deal, with a comprehensive strategy that is responsive to the conditions at the time and confronts Iran’s continued pursuit of a nuclear weapons capability, its support for terrorism and instability, its ballistic missile proliferation, and its horrific human rights record.”

He continued: “Such a strategy will require a new national security team that is committed to rebuilding our defenses and restoring our alliances, starting with our relationship with Israel.  It will require sustained diplomatic efforts to put significant financial, diplomatic, and military pressure on Iran to change its behavior.  And because of the massive sanctions relief provided by this terrible deal, the impact of unilateral U.S. sanctions will be limited and it will be important to work with our allies to reimpose multilateral sanctions and pressure.”

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About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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13 Responses

  1. michelle
    michelle
    July 21, 2015, 10:21 am

    .
    system fail
    seems like the pro-Israel people will have review their m.o.
    .
    G-d Bless
    .

  2. Kathleen
    Kathleen
    July 21, 2015, 11:28 am

    MSNBC Melissa Harris Perry did a great segment on Trump may not be the scariest Republican candidate. She focused on “we see you Governor Walker” I think it was on her program where she referred to Adelson and Walker working together.

    Kasich could really more to the front of the pack in the media and get on the Republican stage if he were to read the whole report and come out saying he supports the deal. Sparks would fly.

    60 senior US national security leaders support Iran deal …

    http://www.usnews.com/…/60-senior-us-national-se..

    • Scott
      Scott
      July 21, 2015, 11:51 am

      Good catch. My guess is on foreign policy, Trump quite not the scariest candidate.
      I’m not sure Bush needs Adelson money. But he is trying to avoid becoming a neocon target, and not taking them on openly. Not sure that will work.

      • Rusty Pipes
        Rusty Pipes
        July 21, 2015, 4:25 pm

        Bush can probably manage without neocon money in the primary. He needs to avoid attacks from neocon think tanks and pundits in the press and to avoid alienating Christian Zionists — whose votes he will need in the general, even if they vote for someone else in the primary.

      • Kathleen
        Kathleen
        July 22, 2015, 11:28 am

        “My guess is on foreign policy, Trump quite not the scariest candidate. ” One of MHP’s insightful points. MHP rocks the MSM house.

      • Doubtom
        Doubtom
        July 23, 2015, 2:16 am

        Bush doesn’t need Adelson’s money, what he DOES NEED is Adelson’s blessings. Most Americans are unaware of the level of influence these highly placed Jewish politicians and their ultra-rich backers have on our political process. Watch Chuck Schumer on the Iran deal. We could get rid of our Congress entirely and save a lot of money on their inflated salaries by simply going with AIPAC’s wishes in the first place. That’s how it ends up anyway, let’s just do away with the middle men (Congressional whores).

  3. David Doppler
    David Doppler
    July 21, 2015, 11:44 am

    The Bibi-Rush Strategy: stage a contest – akin to a hot dog eating contest – to see who can out bombast the other guy. The carrot is Adelson’s money, the stick is Rush’s critique on the airwaves after each public pronouncement.

    A formula for bringing on another Dark Age, if allowed to seize power. Against it are arrayed the institutions of the American republic, an educated and informed electorate, a free press (and blogosphere), divided power, separation of religion from political power, periodic elections, diffused social institutions that create community outside of the halls of power, a written constitution all office-holders are required to swear to uphold, an independent judiciary.

    Which society will prove stronger, more resilient, and more enduring? Right-wing Zionism, or the American Republic?

  4. michelle
    michelle
    July 21, 2015, 2:00 pm

    .
    what is the word from the other side about our new friend in the Middle East
    .
    G-d Bless
    .

  5. Boo
    Boo
    July 22, 2015, 1:19 pm

    The closest any of these Närrin will get to the White House is if they get invited for dinner. And I hope for their sakes they’re not banking on that.

    My concern is more for Hillary. I don’t think she’s inclined to undo the Iran deal, but she’s way too much of a kneejerk chickenhawk for my tastes.

  6. RobertHenryEller
    RobertHenryEller
    July 23, 2015, 2:40 am

    What Republican candidate isn’t bobbing for Adelson’s apple?

    And I’m not sure Hillary is not in the hunt, either.

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