September 24th, 2013
09:44 AM ET
1 year ago

Santorum: Iranian president a 'fraud'

(CNN) - There's "no way" President Barack Obama should meet with newly-elected Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the United National General Assembly this week, former Sen. Rick Santorum said Tuesday.

"The president of the United States should never meet with someone who's not the president of their country," Santorum said on CNN's "New Day," arguing that the Ayatollah is the person who leads Iran.

One of the big questions at this week's U.N. gathering is whether the president will partake in some exchange with Rouhani, who has signaled he's ready to negotiate an end to Iran's nuclear program.

But Santorum argued Rouhani is nothing but a mouthpiece.

"Rouhani is a puppet that they put up. The president of the United States should not meet with a puppet. That diminishes the presidency. It diminishes the United States even further," he told CNN's Kate Bolduan. "No way he should be meeting with this fraud."

On domestic issues, the former senator from Pennsylvania and 2012 Republican presidential candidate applauded Sen. Ted Cruz's controversial efforts to defund Obamacare in the current spending bill.

While House Republicans passed a measure that would keep the government running but strip funds for the health care law, the Democratic-controlled Senate is expected to remove the Obamacare language from the bill.

Cruz, despite pushback by some GOP senators, is fighting tooth and nail to get the Senate to keep the Obamacare provision in the bill, a move that will make a government shutdown more likely.

"I've been accused of putting my party in a bad spot repeatedly when I was in the Senate and sometimes you have to do that," Santorum said. "You have to make people uncomfortable because people do get too comfortable and sort of cut the deal."

Santorum said he "would be with Ted Cruz" if he were in the Senate. Both are considered potential 2016 presidential candidates.

"When you have a president and Senate controlled by one party, that means, generally speaking, if you want more limited government, it's going to be a bad deal, unless someone can plant a flag and say 'No, we're going to pull this discussion this way a little bit and not just do business as usual.'"

– CNN's Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.


Filed under: Congress • Iran • Rick Santorum • Ted Cruz
soundoff (47 Responses)
  1. The Real Tom Paine

    Methinks his sweater vest is too tight today.

    September 24, 2013 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  2. ThinkAgain

    @Rudy NYC: "Santorum was, or could be again, a "serious" candidate for POTUS. "

    A man who calls people who go to college "snobs" and yet relies on highly-trained medical professionals to keep his special-needs daughter alive automatically disqualifies himself from ANY public office.

    Personally, I think that should keep him out of the public eye forever.

    September 24, 2013 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  3. Tampa Tim

    Rick must have used Monty Python for his religious teachings, Remember, "Blessed are the cheese makers?" And the right wingnuts wonder why the world laughs at them.

    September 24, 2013 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  4. Data Driven

    @Tom Paine,

    LOL at the idea of a Papacy in Bucks County, PA.

    By the way, Santorum and other religious conservatives have been weally, weally quiet about Francis, haven't they? Santorum and other conservative Catholics have been quiet because the hierarchical nature of the Church pretty much insists on it. However, I foresee the temporary alliance between American Protestant fundamentalists and the Church coming to an end very shortly.

    September 24, 2013 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  5. michael

    Thank God this man will never be President of nothing, but maybe the GOP (garbage of America)! There would never be a possibility for peace due to his hyperbole incendiary personal retaliatory rhetoric!

    September 24, 2013 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  6. Sniffit

    Shorter Ayatollah Frothmeini: "Iran needs to stay a bogeyman. Anything that makes them less of a bogeyman is bad because argle bargle krischun nashun herpa derpa muslims."

    September 24, 2013 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  7. The Real Tom Paine

    -Tampa Tim

    Rick must have used Monty Python for his religious teachings, Remember, "Blessed are the cheese makers?" And the right wingnuts wonder why the world laughs at them.
    *********************
    How does he feel about " Blessed are the big noses", I wonder?

    September 24, 2013 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  8. Rudy NYC

    For Santorum to suggest that the US should meet with the Ayatollah of Iran is truyly unbelievable. Don't forget folks. This is the same guy who, during the Republican 2012 presidential race, campaigned on waging war against Iran. Now? He's advocating sitting down and negotiating with the Ayatollah?

    Unbelievable. He's so against Pres. Obama that he's pulled a Rick Perry. He can't remember what's supposed to be for.

    September 24, 2013 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  9. M.A.P.

    Can't even believe this guy came close to winning the Republic nomination for President. THAT guy – PRESIDENT???? Says a lot about the voters from the right, doesn't it? they don't like facts, they like emotive, angry, anti everything, name calling, born again christians with no understanding of anything outside their nice little bubbles (same goes for Romney). Is there anyone who can save the Republican party? Probably, but they'll never get to a place in the party where they can gather majority of support because the EXTREMISTS from the tea party are like a powerful fraction that ends up dictating the entire party's lines.

    September 24, 2013 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  10. Paul

    Just another angry fanatic.

    September 24, 2013 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  11. Woman In California

    "The president of the United States should never meet with someone who's not the president of their country,"

    And just who are you to advise the POTUS on foreign policy or anything else for that matter? Why don't you go back and join your band of rebels in their quest to hurt the president and finish off the American people? Please do me a huge favor and just go away permanently.

    September 24, 2013 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  12. Sniffit

    This is what happens when they hand out bath salts for the eucharist.

    September 24, 2013 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  13. rs

    Remember when the roof fell in on the Bush Administration, and despite the all of the problems, people kept polling that G.W. Bush was that "regular" guy they'd like to sit down have a beer with? That was the hallmark of the last gen. GOP- they may have not been guys you agreed with, but like Reagan and others of that ilk, they were at least like Americans, and perhaps even likable.

    Can anyone say that about Santorum (or Cruz,Perry, Romney, or....)? It's as if these guys are going out of their way to peg the obnoxious meter and flaunt their disdain for about 90% of the nation and what it stands for..

    September 24, 2013 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  14. Wake up People!

    Not that I would ever vote Republican, especially after the 08 and 12 elections, but what happened to the smart republicans like Colin Powell? You hardly ever hear anything about them, just the RWNJ's.

    September 24, 2013 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  15. rs

    Paul

    Just another angry fanatic.
    _____________________
    ..... who happens to represent the GOP.

    September 24, 2013 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  16. Anonymous

    Look out! Ted's gaining steam. First Palin and now Santorum. What happened to Marco? He seems to have
    disappeared.

    September 24, 2013 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  17. Carly

    I didn't know he was still relevant. I guess I'll have to pay more attention to the peanut gallery. Or should I say pay more attention to the nut gallery. Hopefully the people will not go down his road again.

    September 24, 2013 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  18. Tabeth

    Dear American Politicians,
    Please speak sense and let us Mature....

    September 24, 2013 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  19. old guy in West Virginia

    Let's see how many responsible Republicans distance themselves from the perverse pronouncements of this sanctimonious ideologue. And yes, I do think that there are such persons as responsible Republicans. Seems to me they've been awfully quiet recently, though . . . Guys like Santorum were hooted down even by Goldwater.

    September 24, 2013 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  20. Vince

    Wait...who? This guy is still around talking about stuff?

    September 24, 2013 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  21. luke,az

    Look who's talking about being a fraud . Santorum and the rest of the wacko republican party are the real frauds ruining our country. When are the moderate Republicans going to take their party back. Where are you Colin Powell ?

    September 24, 2013 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  22. Rudy NYC

    Wake up People!

    Not that I would ever vote Republican, especially after the 08 and 12 elections, but what happened to the smart republicans like Colin Powell? You hardly ever hear anything about them, just the RWNJ's.
    ---------------–
    Whatever happened to smart, likeable, compassionate conservative like George W. Bush. At least he knew how to win elections.

    September 24, 2013 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
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