Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said Friday that he’d try to work with what he called a “disastrous” nuclear deal with Iran to turn it around and that there will be “hell to pay” if Iran violates the terms, taking a different path from some of his 2016 GOP rivals who have vowed to immediately tear up the deal.
“We have a horrible contract, but we do have a contract,” Mr. Trump said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “I have all my life — I love to buy bad contracts where … people go bust, and I make those contracts good. This is a perfect example of taking over a bad contract. I will find something in that contract that will be very, very well-scrutinized by us, and I think they will not be able to do it, whatever it may be.”
“I know it would be very popular for me to do what a couple of ‘em said — ‘we’re gonna rip it up,’ ‘we’re gonna rip it up,’” he said. “Iran is going to be an absolute terror, and it’s horrible that we have to live with it. Nevertheless, we have a contract. We’ve lost the power of sanctions because all of these other folks, all of these other countries that were with us, are gone now.”
“And, by the way, making money,” Mr. Trump continued. “You see Russia [is] selling missiles and Germany’s involved. Everybody’s involved now with Iran selling them stuff. We’re probably [going to] be the only ones that won’t be selling them anything, but that’s all gone now.”
“We have an agreement, it’s a horrible agreement. I will make that agreement so tough and if they break it, they will have hell to pay,” he said.
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, while critical of the deal, has likewise indicated it’s unlikely he would tear it up on day one, while GOP contenders like Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and former Texas Gov. Rick Perry have said they would.
“I would much rather … give you an answer that I would rip up the contract, I’m going to go in there … you can’t do that,” Mr. Trump said. “I have to do what’s right. Politically and certainly for the nomination, I would love to tell you I’m going to rip up this contract, I’m going to be the toughest guy in the world, and I’m just rippin’ it up, but you know what? Life doesn’t work that way.”
“I will find things, and I’ve always done this. I love buying bad contracts,” Mr. Trump said. “I buy buildings with horrible mortgages and I straighten out the mortgages, and I go after the banks, and I do lots of things. This is a really bad contract.”
“This is one of the most incompetently drawn contracts … we will find things in there and we will do numbers. These are not good people. This deal should never have been made the way it’s been made,” he said.
• David Sherfinski can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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