US President Barack Obama blasts critics of the nuclear agreement with Iran, accusing the Republican presidential candidates of playing “fast and loose” with the facts to kill the accord.
During a news conference in Ethiopia on Monday, Obama said Republicans, seeking to replace him in 2016 election, were using rhetoric about the July 14 agreement that was “ridiculous” and “sad.”
“We are creating a culture that is not conducive to good policy or good politics,” Obama said. “The American people deserve better.”
The president’s comments were specifically directed at GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, who suggested Sunday that the nuclear accord was akin to marching “the Israelis to the door of the oven,” a reference to the holocaust.
Obama also denounced harsh rhetoric from Senator Ted Cruz, Republican of Texas who is running for president.
“We’ve had a sitting senator, who also happens to be running for president, suggest that I’m the leading state sponsor of terrorism,” he said, referencing comments from Sen. Cruz.
“These are leaders in the Republican Party,” Obama said. “It’s not the kind of leadership that’s needed for America right now.”
Huckabee hit back Monday in a statement. “What’s ‘ridiculous and sad’ is that President Obama does not take Iran’s repeated threats seriously.”
According to CNN/ORC poll released on Sunday, Huckabee is in 7th place with the support of 5 percent of Republican and Republican-leaning registered voters.
The White House has launched an intense sales pitch on Capitol Hill in an effort to keep skeptical lawmakers from derailing the nuclear accord with Iran.
Congress has 60 days to review the Iran agreement and decide whether to approve or reject it.
Senior Republican lawmakers have vowed to do their best effort to scuttle the nuclear pact, which they say will threaten Israel and empower Iran.
Obama has said he would veto any congressional resolution to reject the accord.
The US president arrived in Ethiopia late on Sunday following his visit to Kenya, his father’s home country.
Later on Monday, Obama will meet with African leaders to discuss the crisis in South Sudan, where warring factions in the government fight for power. “The conditions on the ground are getting much, much worse,” he said.
By Press TV