Republicans fumed and Americans were outraged and alarmed at a report this week that President Obama traded $400 million in cash for Americans held hostage by Iran.
Social media was full of reaction to news that the administration secretly airlifted the money to Tehran at the same time four American were being released by Iran.
Why was this $400 million given to Iran in unmarked bills in secret? What else is going on that we are not aware of? #VoteTrumpPence2016
— Lori Hendry (@Lrihendry) August 3, 2016
Giving 400 million dollars to Iran is an act of treason. Obama should be immediately arrested.
— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) August 3, 2016
@FoxNews How could this happen ? This is the most transparent WH in history. NOT
— Joe (@jbtalkingheads) August 3, 2016
@megynkelly So, we’re paying ransom demands to terrorists now?!
— Lawrence J. Green (@LawrenceJGreen2) August 3, 2016
The White House followed the furor with statements that the cash was not a ransom paid for the Americans and the timing of the payout was coincidence.
@FoxNews There not going to say it WAS a ransom. They’re going to do what they do under Obama admin. They’re going to lie.
— (((Texan))) (@SomeGuysCat) August 3, 2016
@FoxNews I actually feel sorry 4 Jim Kirby trying to convince the American people and the world that the $400m was not Ransom money.
— John Brancato (@jbrancato1997) August 3, 2016
$400 million to Iran? What’s the big deal? It’s not like we sent them $150 billion or something… Oh wait, oops never mind…
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) August 3, 2016
— Couranto (@Couranto) August 4, 2016
The timing of $400 million payment to Iran was a “coincidence” just like State Department deleting video about the Iran deal was a “glitch”
— Katie Pavlich (@KatiePavlich) August 3, 2016
Republican lawmakers were in an uproar over the report, blasting the administration in statements, letters and media.
U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., demanded an explanation in a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew.
“This report makes plain what the Administration can no longer deny: this was a ransom payment to Iran for U.S. hostages,” Cotton wrote.
The letter asked about the nature of the payment, its timing, currency used and how the settlement money would be used before concluding with a recap of Iran’s history of taking hostages and funding terrorism.
“I am afraid that the cash payment of a $400 million ransom to the ayatollahs makes all of these problems exponentially worse,” Cotton wrote.
— Senate Republicans (@SenateGOP) August 4, 2016
“These reports are particularly troubling in light of the Department’s continuing failure to cooperate with my inquiry into the FBI’s alleged role in facilitating ransom payments to terrorist groups,” Grassley wrote, noting that “it is my duty to get the facts.”
Other GOP lawmakers slammed the administration and the president.
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Paying ransom to kidnappers puts Americans at risk-Policies of paying terrorists leads to more kidnappings in Iran https://t.co/XEYGT5xOpb
— Mark Kirk (@SenatorKirk) August 3, 2016
— John McCain (@SenJohnMcCain) August 3, 2016
Obama’s Iran policies are dangerous for America. First the flawed #IranDeal, now a ransom payment.
— Senator John Thune (@SenJohnThune) August 3, 2016
The administration, including President Obama and Sec. Clinton, is responsible for leading America into a deal that will arm #Iran.
— Richard Burr (@SenatorBurr) August 3, 2016
— Kelly Ayotte (@KellyAyotte) August 4, 2016
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