CAPITOL HILL —
U.S. lawmakers of both parties appear to be souring on the prospects for a nuclear deal with Iran.
As another deadline approaches for negotiators in Vienna, even some of President Barack Obama’s most stalwart backers on Capitol Hill are sounding a note of resignation on the status of the talks.
Speaking with VOA, Democratic Senator Chris Murphy said he is less optimistic about chances for a deal than he was a week ago.
“It seems the Iranians are having a very hard time getting to ‘yes,’ but the administration has made it clear over and over that they are not going to accept a bad deal," he said. "And if the president is ready to walk away from the table — if the Iranians don’t move on these last few remaining issues — I think that is comforting to his supporters and even his detractors here on Capitol Hill.”
Stumbling blocks to a final deal confirm the worst fears of long-time critics of diplomacy with Iran, like Republican Senator Ted Cruz.
“This Iranian nuclear deal goes from bad to worse to catastrophic," he said. "At this point, the Obama administration seems simply to be pursuing domestic political objectives and dramatically undermining the national security of this country. This deal only accelerates Iran acquiring nuclear weapons."
Cruz is seeking his party’s presidential nomination next year. His comments are but a taste of the fierce rhetoric that will resound at the Capitol if a deal is reached, or if negotiations fail.