Top Pro-Israel Donor Unsure of Clinton’s Position on Iran Deal

Philanthropist Haim Saban: ‘I have no idea what Hillary thinks about the Iran deal’

Haim Saban / AP
April 21, 2015

A top supporter of Hillary Clinton on Monday denied that he knew the presumptive Democratic nominee’s position on the agreement between the Obama administration and Iran on nuclear issues, contradicting media reports suggesting she was opposed to such a deal.

Haim Saban, the Hollywood mogul and pro-Israel philanthropist, told Israel’s Channel One earlier this month that the Democratic presidential candidate "has an opinion, a very well-defined opinion" on the Iranian negotiations, according to a report in the Hill.

"I can’t reveal to you things that were said behind closed doors," said Saban, a long-time Clinton loyalist and fundraiser. "In any case, everything that she thinks and everything she has done and will do will always be for the good of Israel. We don't need to worry about this."

Several reports took Saban’s comments as a hint that Clinton was opposed to the Obama administration’s framework agreement with Iran.

However, Saban said that he is still unaware of the 2016 hopeful’s position on the issue—although he said he was "sure that she has a firm opinion about the matter."

"I have no idea what Hillary thinks about the Iran deal," said Saban. "What I said is that even if I knew I couldn’t share."

Saban said media reports "simply extrapolated, wrongly, that [Clinton] is against [the Iran deal], which made for a good, but false headline."

Clinton has yet to take a strong public stance on the Iran framework agreement. Earlier this month she said she supported the negotiations while also noting that the "devil is always in the details" and "the bar must be set high" for a final deal. Some in the pro-Israel community say Clinton’s position on the deal is likely to influence congressional Democrats.

Saban, the co-owner of Univision who funded the Brookings Institute’s former Saban Center for Middle East Policy, helped raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for Clinton’s presidential campaign in 2008. His wife has donated up to $25 million to the Clinton Foundation.