WATCH: 'Iranian Hardliners Making Common Cause With Republicans,' Quips Obama

While speaking at American University in Washington, D.C. in defense of his landmark nuclear deal with Iran, President Obama took a jab at Republicans opposing the deal - comparing them to Iranians who chant 'Death to America.'

Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Barack Obama responds to a heckler as he speaks during a reception to celebrate LGBT Pride Month, June 24, 2015.Credit: AP

Short transcript:

(Scroll for the clip)

President Obama: I recognize that resorting to force may be tempting in the face of the rhetoric and behavior that emanates from parts of Iran. It is offensive. It is incendiary. We do take it seriously.

But superpowers should not act impulsively in response to taunts or even provocations that can be addressed short of war. Just because Iranian hardliners chant "Death to America" does not mean that that's what all Iranians believe. In fact, it's those...


In fact, it's those hardliners who are most comfortable with the status quo. It's those hardliners chanting "Death to America" who have been most opposed to the deal. They're making common cause with the Republican Caucus.


The majority of the Iranian people have powerful incentives to urge their government to move in a different, less provocative direction, incentives that are strengthened by this deal. We should offer them that chance. We should give them the opportunity.