White House Blames Allegations of Iran Deal Deceit in Ben Rhodes Profile on 'Sour Grapes'

May 6, 2016

White House spokesman Josh Earnest was asked Friday if the Obama administration had "hand-picked Beltway insiders" to sell the message in the Iran nuclear deal to the American people, as alleged in a recent profile, but Earnest dismissed the notion and said the claims were unfounded.

"I recognize that there might be some people who are disappointed they did not succeed in killing the Iran deal and maybe these unfounded claims are the result of sour grapes," Earnest said.

Earnest said that the administration engaged in an aggressive campaign to educate the American people about the details of the landmark nuclear deal which not only strengthened the relationship with Iran but strengthened the national security of the United States.

"We made a strong case that killing the deal would actually make another war in the Middle East more likely," Earnest said.

Earnest added that President Obama is proud of the success in completing the agreement and the positive impact that it has had on national security in the short term and the long-term posture.

The journalist asked Earnest about the New York Times characterization of Ben Rhodes and the use of the word "misleading" when it came to the Iran deal.

Earnest said that the Times piece was long and that he probably missed it. The word appears twice in the piece, however.