One of the issues where Democratic congressional candidate Annette Taddeo differs with Rep. Carlos Curbelo, the Miami Republican she's trying to unseat, is over the nuclear deal with Iran.
Taddeo supports the agreement -- though with some hesitation -- while Curbelo opposes it.
Here's the statement Taddeo's campaign provided the Miami Herald on Friday, after the newspaper asked for the Democrat's position:
America must always be an unwavering supporter of Israel and her right to defend herself. As an American Jew, and knowing the horrors of the Holocaust from within our family, this issue is terribly personal to me and my family. I do not trust Iran, and believe we should do everything in our power to prevent that regime from gaining nuclear weapons. My support for Israel and concern about Iran are precisely why I support the the Iran deal. The agreement enables the United States and our allies to verify Iran's compliance, and in the event of a violation, respond immediately and militarily if necessary. While it's not perfect, this deal is our best chance of blocking Iran’s path to a nuclear bomb, short of war.
Taddeo was born Roman Catholic in Colombia but converted to Judaism as an adult in the U.S. and later married a fellow Jew, Eric Goldstein. (As chair of the Miami-Dade County Democrats, she was known as Annette Taddeo Goldstein but she's never used her full name on the ballot. She said when she was Charlie Crist's running mate in the Florida governor's race last year that such a long name didn't fit on campaign signs.)
Curbelo, a moderate who represents a swing district from Westchester to Key West, issued a statement slamming the Iran deal last week:
When the details of the Iran Deal were released, I began the review process with an open mind. After thorough evaluation and consultation with countless foreign affairs and Middle East policy experts on the ramifications of the agreement, I came to the conclusion that this deal will in no way prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear threshold state. In fact, rather than eliminate Iran's nuclear program, this deal manages to give it legitimacy.
The deal negotiated by Secretary of State John Kerry and President Obama fails to provide the United States with unencumbered access to Iran’s military sites and gives Iran the opportunity to stall and block inspector access to their facilities for 24 days. This elongated amount of time is absolutely unacceptable. It is irrational to give concessions to a country that has historically lied about their nuclear capabilities and spread terror throughout the region. For these reasons and more, I strongly oppose the Iran Deal.
Even more troubling was to find that after further review, it became clear that secret agreements were made between the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Iran. These inconspicuous agreements were not submitted to Congress for review, which was in director violation of the Iran Nuclear Review Act. The American people deserve the confidence of knowing that Iran will never possess the ability to use nuclear weapons. The only acceptable agreement would be one that completely eliminates the nuclear threat of Iran to provide for a safer United States and world.