On August 9th, Goodman Acker’s Senior Partner Gerald Acker was featured on Local 4’s “Flashpoint,” a Sunday morning weekly community hot topic program hosted by news anchor Devin Scillian. The debate featured three experts with differing opinions about the Iran nuclear deal: Representative Debbie Dingell, who is currently undecided; Mr. Gerald Acker, a pro-Isreal and pro-deal supporter; and Mr. Nolan Finley of the Detroit News, who is not in favor of the deal.
Ms. Dingell, a Democrat who represents the 12th district of Michigan, said that she believes this will be the “most serious vote [she] casts” in all of her career as a politician. She has met with President Obama, Secretary Kerry, Secretary Menendez, Senator Liu, APAC, and various Republicans and Democrats in order to gain more knowledge about the deal. There are two big issues for the Representatives that are undecided are the following: inspections–making sure Iran cannot obtain nuclear power; and snapbacks–understanding what the consequences are if the sanctions are removed. Ms. Dingell is one of 10-15 Democratic congressmen and women who are currently undecided. These Representatives will ultimately cast the deciding votes on the Iran nuclear agreement.
When asked about his opinion, Acker made it clear that it is possible to be pro-Israel and pro-deal. As a person who has family in Israel, Acker hears firsthand about the threats the country is facing. He stated that the biggest threat the people of Israel face is the threat of nuclear weapons. By supporting the deal, the U.S. is helping protect Israel. Acker has spoken with Energy Secretary Mr. Moniz and Under Secretary for Political Affairs Ms. Sherman about this issue. When asked by Mr. Scillian about trusting Iran, Acker said he does not trust the country; rather it is still important to make sure the nuclear weapons are removed and intrusive inspections become a regular occurrence.
Countering Acker’s response, Mr. Finley stated that he does not support the agreement for various reasons. He believes it would be very difficult to verify that Iran does not have nuclear weapons and he is concerned about what the U.S. would do if Iran violates the agreement. Furthermore, it is predicted that within a year, even with the limitations enforced by the agreement, Iran would have enough material to create a nuclear bomb. Overall, he believes there are too many loopholes to the agreement and the potential negative outcomes outweigh the benefits.
Acker and Ms. Dingell both conceded that Mr. Finley’s statement is correct in that there is no way to know the outcomes of the agreement. However, Ms. Dingell stated that it is difficult to know the outcomes of any agreements of this nature. She has met with many members of the Jewish community who support the agreement and who see it as a pathway to peace and a way to prevent war. As is apparent, the Iran nuclear deal will continue to be a controversial topic until Congress votes on it in the coming weeks. Watch the video here and tell us your opinion. Are you in favor of the deal?
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