In an excellent piece for National Review, Andrew McCarthy makes a compelling case that President Obama’s payment of $400 million to Iran was not just wrong, it was ILLEGAL.
In fact, a violation of the the statute in question is a felony punishable by up to 20 years impirsonment, according to McCarthy.
And we do impeach presidents for breaking the law, right?
Obama has claimed that his secret transfer of money in foriegn-denominated bills — gosh, this sounds like something out of the Sopranos, doesn’t it? — was done because the United States lacks “a banking relationship” with Iran.
Well, that’s saying I lack a checking account with Citibank. I do, but that’s because I don’t bank there.
The reason we have no banking relationship with Iran is not because we can’t find tellers fluent in Farsi, it’s because the very sancitons Obama promised to uphold in selling his Iran deal prohibit us from engaging in transactions with Iran.
From the article:
Treasury’s guidance cites to what’s known as the ITSR (Iranian Transactions and Sanctions Regulations), the part of the Code of Federal Regulations that implements anti-terrorism sanctions initiated by President Clinton under federal law. The specific provision cited is Section 560.204, which states: The exportation, reexportation, sale, or supply, directly or indirectly, from the United States, or by a United States person, wherever located, of any goods, technology, or services to Iran or the Government of Iran is prohibited. The regulation goes on to stress that this prohibition may not be circumvented by exporting things of value “to a person in a third country” when one has “knowledge or reason to know that” such things are “intended specifically for supply, transshipment, or reexportation, directly or indirectly, to Iran or the Government of Iran.”
Nor is laundering the money though other countries by using their currency okay.
Section 560.203 states: Evasions; attempts; causing violations; conspiracies: . . . Any transaction . . . that evades or avoids, has the purpose of evading or avoiding, causes a violation of, or attempts to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in this part is prohibited. . . . Any conspiracy formed to violate any of the prohibitions set forth in this part is prohibited.
Follow the money, see? Follow the money.
So, I guess Republicans could try impeaching the president. But that would be politically motivated. Right?
Anyway, Obama is gone soon, and the Republican long ago showed that they are not going to do anything serious to hold him accountable for his various actions skirting the law. At least the courts have had more backbone, stopping some of his illegal executive orders. But soon, Hillary may change all that forever.