Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida Republican, said the next president shouldn’t be bound by any potential deal on Iran’s nuclear program negotiated by President Obama.
“The United States, although it’s less than ideal, could unilaterally re-impose more crushing and additional sanctions,” Mr. Rubio told The Associated Press, saying he would also “use the standing of the United States on the global stage to try to encourage other nations to do so.”
Talks between Iranian and U.S. officials over Iran’s nuclear program resumed this week, and the U.S. has been working with other countries belonging to the so-called P5+1 — Britain, France, Germany, China, and Russia — on the framework of a possible deal.
Mr. Rubio, who signed a letter to Iranian leaders along with 46 other GOP senators warning that the next president could undo such a deal, says he would only accept a proposal that would fully disband Iran’s enrichment capacity.
The potential 2016 presidential contender has been touting his foreign policy credentials as he lays the groundwork for a possible White House bid. He has spoken out against the Obama administration’s handling of the Islamic State terrorist group in the Middle East and its dealing with the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, and has been a leading critic of the administration’s recent move to normalize relations with Cuba.
Several other GOP senators considering presidential runs — Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ted Cruz of Texas, and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina — also signed onto the letter, which has been criticized by the White House and congressional Democrats.
But even before a deal has been reached, Mr. Rubio predicted Iran would not live up to it.
“I have zero doubt that between now and the next president, Iran will violate some condition of this deal,” he said. “The challenge will be whether the European community and our allies around the world are willing to look the other way and ignore them or are willing to re-impose sanctions.”