Negotiations Articles

U.S. Backed Into Accepting Iran's Initial Bargaining Position

7:50 AM, Jul 28, 2015

This week, the Wall Street Journal wrote that in a report to Capitol Hill last week, the Obama administration said

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Ben Rhodes Misled About 'Anywhere, Anytime' Inspections of Iran's Nuclear Program

8:19 AM, Jul 15, 2015

President Obama's deputy national security adviser, Ben Rhodes, has been using doublespeak to sell the nuclear deal to the American people. In April of this year, Rhodes claimed that the nuclear deal would include "anywhere, anytime" access to Iranian nuclear sites. Last night, the top Obama adviser said, "We never sought in this negotiation the capacity for so-called anytime, anywhere" inspections. 

Here's video:

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The Charm of Minister Zarif

8:35 AM, Apr 01, 2015

In an interesting story in Bloomberg entitled "Iran's Charmer in Chief Wins Again," Eli Lake discusses the "charm" of Iran's top nuclear negotiator and foreign minister, Mohammed Javad Zarif.

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Talking to Assad?

11:16 AM, Mar 15, 2015

The AP is reporting that:

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Republican Senators Write to Iran: Deal With Obama Can Be Revoked

7:02 AM, Mar 09, 2015

A group of nearly 50 Republican senators have written a letter to Iran to explain how the U.S. Constitution works. The letter is "An Open Letter to the Leaders of the Islamic Republic of Iran."

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Why Are the Iran Talks and the Israeli-Palestinian Talks Alike?

12:05 PM, Nov 24, 2014

Today we learned that it has been impossible to reach an agreement with Iran over its nuclear weapons program. Even a short "framework" agreement or one-pager was beyond reach. And this, despite the extension of the talks from the original deadline last spring.

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State Department on Iranian Nuke Negotiators: 'We Know Each Other Well Enough to Make Jokes'

7:04 AM, Oct 17, 2014

Some American and Iranian diplomats have been spending so much time together lately that they're beginning to crack jokes with one another.

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State Department: 'Volleyball Diplomacy Strengthens U.S.-Iranian Relations'

8:01 AM, Aug 12, 2014

Besides centrifuges, uranium enrichment, and sanctions, this month the State Department turned to sets, digs, and spikes in diplomatic efforts with Iran. Samuel Werberg, a press and public diplomacy officer in the U.S.

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WH Spokesman: 'The President Has Spent an Inordinate Amount of Time ... Negotiating'

3:38 PM, Jul 25, 2013

Throughout his time as president, Barack Obama has often been the subject of criticism from both sides of the political spectrum for not engaging enough with Congress, Republicans in particular, to solve problems and work through legislative issues.

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Obama’s Hard Line

He wants a ‘deal’—on his terms.
Dec 24, 2012

Pelosi Skips Town Amid 'Fiscal Cliff' Talks

Attends birthday party and funeral.
10:17 AM, Dec 14, 2012

A day after complaining that the "fiscal cliff" negotiations are "getting boring," Nancy Pelosi was spotted yesterday afternoon skipping town.

She was comfortably situated in first class on United Airlines flight 1460, which was scheduled to leave Dulles Airport at 2:53 p.m. and arrive in San Francisco 5:57 p.m. A list on United's website of those who were on the upgrade standby list reveals that PEL, N. (presumably, Nancy Pelosi) was upgraded to seat 4F, a window seat in first class.

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Sessions on Secret 'Fiscal Cliff' Negotiations: 'The Senate Now Operates Like the Russian Duma'

9:22 AM, Dec 12, 2012

Senator Jeff Sessions continues to argue against the secrecy of the ongoing "fiscal cliff" negotiations with an op-ed this morning in today's Wall Street Journal. Sessions argues that the secrecy is inherently anti-Democratic, and similar to the "Russian Duma, where officials meet behind closed doors, put out the word, and the overwhelming votes materialize."

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NYTimes Reporter: 'They Are So Much Cockier Now at the White House'

10:49 AM, Dec 09, 2012

New York Times reporter Helene Cooper explained on Meet the Press that the White House is now "cockier":

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Senator Blasts 'Secret' Fiscal Cliff Negotiations

1:08 PM, Nov 29, 2012

In remarks on the Senate floor today, Alabama senator Jeff Sessions blasted President Barack Obama and congressional leadership for holding "secret" fiscal cliff negotiations.

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Carney: 'The Future' Is Now

12:51 PM, Nov 29, 2012

Jay Carney, speaking about the so-called fiscal cliff negotations, said yesterday that "the future" is now, as Jeryl Bier first noticed:

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Negotiating With Iran, 1979 and 2012

10:40 AM, Apr 20, 2012

As the United States and other members of the P5+1 commence negotiations with Iran, it is worth recalling the classic analysis of Iran’s negotiating style sent in from the U.S. embassy in Tehran on August 13, 1979. The author of the cable, political counselor Victor Tomseth, and the man who authorized it, charge d’affaires Bruce Laingen, became hostages when the embassy was seized on November 4, 1979.

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Negotiating with Terror Sponsors

3:14 PM, Apr 13, 2012

In today’s Wall Street Journal, Steve Hayes notes what will be missing in this weekend’s attempted negotiations with Iran: a serious discussion of Iran’s broad sponsorship of terrorism, particularly against American forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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The Boehner Recovery

The House speaker survives a near-death experience.
Aug 08, 2011

For House speaker John Boehner, Tea Party Republicans weren’t the problem as he sought support for a package of spending cuts attached to an increase in the debt limit. The biggest impediment to a House majority was Republicans fearful a primary opponent would use a vote to boost the debt limit against them.

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Fiscal Conservatives Barred from Supercommittee (Updated)

Will Senate Republicans be able to prevent tax hikes?
8:34 AM, Aug 02, 2011

The debt ceiling deal will pass the Senate early this afternoon. No suspense there. But the vote will be worth watching for another reason: Three Republican Senate sources tell TWS that senators who vote against the deal will be ineligible to serve on the so-called “supercommittee” for deficit reduction that the legislation creates.

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The Grand Old Party Should Shun A 'Grand Bargain'

3:31 PM, Jul 22, 2011

As Bill Kristol writes, the House Republicans have been the only responsible players in the debt-ceiling debate, having passed actual legislation in the light of day, to increase the debt limit.  Now, with all due respect, it’s time for House leaders to stay away from the White House.

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Obama Tries to Have it Both Ways on Defense

8:22 AM, Jul 18, 2011

One of the least covered aspects of the debt limit negotiations has been defense spending. Obama administration officials and congressional Democrats have indicated that the White House would like to include significant defense cuts as part of an eventual deal, even beyond the $400 billion in cuts to security spending over the next twelve years that the president announced in April.

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No More Taxes, No More Debt, No More Obama

The forest and the trees
11:38 PM, Jul 13, 2011

The debt ceiling fight has now reached a point typical of many dramas of this kind, when participants and commentators alike start to lose sight of the forest for the trees. That's inevitable. Trees are what Congress and pundits do for a living, and in any case which trees are left standing just where is not unimportant. So lots of underpaid congressional staffers will be spending long nights working on tree-trimming, tree-maintenance and even tree-beautification, and lots of underpaid journalists will be covering their efforts.

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No Deal

Further cutting the defense budget is an unacceptable debt ceiling compromise.
9:16 AM, Jul 07, 2011

There are many reasons to be skeptical that any likely budget deal would be worth supporting. And it’s long past time for Republicans to be planning strategically, and laying the groundwork legislatively and politically, for an outcome of no deal (or possibly a mini-deal that doesn’t sacrifice conservative principles).

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