While the White House scrambles to contain the damage caused by one of President Obama’s closest aides — who boasted of manipulating social media, journalists and friendly interest groups to sell the Iran nuclear deal — it now is facing new questions about a portion of missing tape in which a State Department official acknowledges misleading the press on the Iran negotiations.
Deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes’ comments to The New York Times Magazine have sparked outrage in Washington’s political and policy circles, especially re-igniting the debate over whether the White House oversold the deal to curb Iran’s nuclear program.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., issued a scathing statement Monday saying the article “exposed how the White House manipulated and, in some cases, manufactured facts to sell the reckless Iran nuclear deal to the American people as a prelude to large-scale disengagement from the Middle East.”
Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse took to the Senate floor Monday to lambaste the “spin.”
Now, the administration is facing further questions over a block of missing tape from a 2013 State Department briefing where top spokeswoman Jen Psaki was asked by Fox News about an earlier claim that no direct, secret talks were underway between the U.S. and Iran – when, in fact, they were.