WASHINGTON — Today, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on the Near East, South Asia, Central Asia and Counterterrorism, released the following statement after Former Vice President Dick Cheney expressed his opposition to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action during a speech at the American Enterprise Institute:

“The Bush-Cheney doctrine in the Middle East has already failed once, in spectacular fashion. It was the foreign policy debacle of the Bush-Cheney years that created the regionally empowered Iran that we deal with today, and the terrorist threat that cripples the region and threatens the United States. Vice President Cheney thinks our memories are so short that we have already forgotten that it was his disastrous policies that put us in the position we are in today - trying to fend off Iran and ISIL at the same time. This stubborn refusal to learn from his own mistakes tells me all I need to know about his judgment. Dick Cheney was wrong then and he’s wrong now,” said Murphy. “The hard truth is that while the negotiated deal with Iran is far from perfect, it remains the best option we have to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. If Congress rejected the deal negotiated by our partners in the P5+1, there is no returning to the negotiating table to get a ‘better deal.’ That's pure fantasy, cooked up by the same people who created the fantasy of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. If this deal goes down, the crippling international sanctions that brought Iran to the table would fall apart. Iran would not allow inspections of sensitive nuclear sites, and Iranian hardliners could resume their work to acquire a nuclear weapon – potentially setting us up for a collision course to another war.

“Reduced sanctions. No inspections. Freedom to pursue nuclear weapons. If Vice President Cheney got his way and Congress rejected this agreement, Iran would essentially get everything it wanted. Iran, which has been getting more powerful ever since the invasion of Iraq, would win again.”