With Iran Deal in Hand, White House Makes Sales Pitch to Preserve It

by Julie Hirschfeld Davis

April 3, 2015

Even before President Obama strode into the Rose Garden on Thursday to announce a historic understanding to restrain Iran’s nuclear program, an elaborate White House salesmanship effort for the deal was underway.

Mr. Obama briefed congressional leaders of both parties by phone, promising more detailed explanations and plenty of consultations in the weeks to come. After the announcement, he spoke for nearly an hour from Air Force One with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, who later said that the deal would threaten his country’s survival.

Senior members of Mr. Obama’s team have fanned out to promote the accord. Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. phoned former Senate colleagues. Denis R. McDonough, the White House chief of staff, and Susan E. Rice, the national security adviser, also reached out to members of Congress. Colin Kahl, Mr. Biden’s national security adviser, called American Jewish groups, emphasizing that no sanctions would be lifted without proof that Iran was complying. And Antony J. Blinken, the deputy secretary of state, made the rounds of the Friday morning news programs.

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