Carly Fiorina Slams Obama’s Iran Deal, Crony Capitalism

AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall
AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall

Carly Fiorina, prospective 2016 Republican presidential candidate and former CEO of Hewlett Packard, slammed President Obama with regard to his Iran deal and his generalized foreign policy on Tuesday in an interview with Fortune.

She suggested that Obama was “rewarding bad behavior” with his talks with Iran, adding correctly:

Tactically, I also think it’s a huge error for the President of the United States to declare victory in a Rose Garden ceremony when only a framework agreement has been decided. What that signals is that this President is now committed publicly to getting this deal. My prediction is that the Iranians will spend the next two months trying to get a better deal. I’ve negotiated plenty of deals. If you want a good deal, you’ve got to be willing to walk away from the table.

In a comment that will likely be taken out of context, Fiorina also called Russian dictator Vladimir Putin “a very formidable man, highly intelligent, highly educated, very cosmopolitan and charming.” She said that in the context of calling him power-driven and stating that only strength will stop him. Be on the lookout for the media to ignore that context. While Fiorina’s hawkish foreign policy will put her on the right of the 2016 spectrum, she did say that with what we now know about Saddam Hussein’s WMD program, she would not have supported the invasion of Iraq.

She also ripped into “crony capitalism” in a thorough interview with Fortune on Tuesday. “What we have now is less and less free market, and more and more crony capitalism,” she said. She continued:

Government gets bigger and more complicated, so only big companies can thrive… Family businesses and startups are getting crushed… We have to lessen the power and complexity and reach of big government and big business.

The “crony capitalism” line, that has now become stock-in-trade for Republican presidential candidates, truly found its home on the campaign trail in 2008 with Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, who fought tooth and nail against crony capitalism as governor in her home state of Alaska. But Fiorina is the most open in carrying that line forward as of late.


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