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The GW Hatchet

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By Ella Mitchell, Staff Writer • April 22, 2024

Trump and Cruz draw hundreds to Capitol Hill to protest Iran deal

Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor
Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor

Presidential hopeful Donald Trump criticized the Iran deal at a Capitol Hill rally on Wednesday. Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor
Presidential hopeful Donald Trump criticized the Iran Deal at a Capitol Hill rally on Wednesday. Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor
This post was written by Hatchet Staff Writer Ariana Mushnick.

Despite the uncomfortable heat, hundreds gathered at Capitol Hill on Wednesday for Sen. Ted Cruz’s “Stop the Iran Deal” rally.

Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump joined forces with former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and former Minnesota congresswoman Michele Bachmann in opposition to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, colloquially known as the Iran deal. Radio host Glenn Beck and “Duck Dynasty” star Phil Robertson were also present at the rally.

“This Iranian nuclear deal is catastrophic,” Cruz, a Republican from Texas, said. “It is the single greatest national security threat facing America.”

Ted Cruz led the "Stop the Iran Deal" rally on Capitol Hill Wednesday. Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor
Ted Cruz led the “Stop the Iran Deal” rally on Capitol Hill Wednesday. Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor

Cruz, who is also running for president, added that if the deal goes through, “The Obama administration will become, quite literally, the world’s leading financier of radical Islamic terrorism.”

The deal, which was reached in July between Iran and the United States, the United Nations Security Council and the European Union, would lift oil and financial sanctions against the Islamic Republic in exchange for significant limitations on the country’s nuclear capabilities. Iran’s current stockpile of enriched uranium, which is used to make nuclear weapons, would be reduced by 98 percent as part of the deal, according to The New York Times.

Cruz urged Democratic senators and members of Congress who support the deal to reconsider their decisions.

Sen. Ted Cruz drew hundreds to Capitol Hill. Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor
Sen. Ted Cruz drew hundreds to Capitol Hill. Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor

“Tell me, if you’re a Democratic senator, how you’ll look a mom in the eyes and say, ‘I voted to lift sanctions on the man who murdered your son when he was defending this nation,’” Cruz said.

Though Cruz organized the rally with Tea Party Patriots and the Zionist Organization of America, it was Trump who drew the most energy from the crowd as he walked on stage to R.E.M.’s “It’s the End of the World as We Know It.”

In a short speech, Trump slammed the Obama administration and criticized the deal, which he called “incompetently negotiated.”

Sarah Palin appeared to support the "Stop the Iran Deal" rally. Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor
Sarah Palin appeared to support the “Stop the Iran Deal” rally. Desiree Halpern | Photo Editor

“We are led by very, very stupid people,” Trump said. “We cannot let it continue. We will have so much winning if I get elected that you may get bored with winning. Believe me.”

As Trump and Cruz spoke, the lively crowd occasionally showed support by shouting “Amen” and “pray to God.” Others held signs that read, “Don’t Betray Israel.”

But not everyone came to cheer on the Republican presidential candidates. Isabela Mourino, a GW freshman from Venezuela, attended the rally with friends to voice their support for the deal.

Mourino said she was shocked by the intensity of the crowd and their reactions to the speakers.

“It feels like a harsh atmosphere. We were just here with our signs and people would come up and insult us,” Mourino said.

Congress is set to vote on the deal later this month.

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