Republican Senator Says Obama Was Acting Like ‘Drug Dealer-in-Chief’ After Paying Iran $400 Million

FILE - In this June 9, 2014 file photo, U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk R-Ill. speaks during an interview in his office. Kirk says the disability he suffers from his stroke has made him more known and more popular than ever, and that it will help him win re-election in 2016. A number of Democrats, particularly incumbent congressmen, are testing the waters for a run to challenge him, but all must be taking what he says into account. (PHOTO CREDIT: AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)
FILE – In this June 9, 2014 file photo, U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk R-Ill. speaks during an interview in his office. Kirk says the disability he suffers from his stroke has made him more known and more popular than ever, and that it will help him win re-election in 2016. A number of Democrats, particularly incumbent congressmen, are testing the waters for a run to challenge him, but all must be taking what he says into account. (PHOTO CREDIT: AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)

Republican senator Mark Kirk said on Sunday that Barack Obama was “acting like the drug dealer-in-chief” when his administration used the delivery of a $400m payment to Iran as what it called “leverage”.

Kirk made the statement during an interview with the editorial board of the State Journal-Register, a local newspaper in his home state of Illinois.

“We can’t have the president of the United States acting like the drug dealer-in-chief,” Kirk said, according to comments published late Saturday. “Giving clean packs of money to a … state sponsor of terror.”

“Those 500-euro notes will pop up across the Middle East,” he added, referring to the currency in which the money was paid because US law makes it illegal to have transactions with Iran in US dollars. “We’re going to see problems in multiple [countries] because of that money given to them.”

Kirk’s campaign stood by the senator’s comments.

“Senator Kirk was referring to the Administration’s decision to send pallets of cash, not even US dollars but euros and Swiss francs, in a clear ransom payment to Iran, world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism,” Kevin Artl, his campaign manager, said in a statement.

“The decision sets an awful and dangerous international standard that should be investigated and the lack of transparency from the Administration clearly indicated they knew their actions were not above board.”

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SOURCE: The Guardian, Sabrina Siddiqui