State Dept. official refuses to define administration's stance on Iran's nuke program

The Obama administration already has led the way in tightening international economic sanctions against Tehran. White House officials have repeatedly said Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons, leaving Chaffetz baffled at Wooster’s refusal to comment.

Wooster initially told Chaffetz the administration has seen no evidence that Iran has given up its nuclear arms ambitions. But when the chairman asked for a yes or no to a question he said most of the world agrees on, the hearing took a twist.

Wooster would not say yes. He also refused to say no. Instead, the State Department official pointed to Tehran’s “obfuscating” and its “lack of transparency” on the matter.

Following the hearing, Wooster declined to talk to The Hill.

“It seems like a simple, straight-forward question,” Chaffetz said during a brief interview. “I can’t believe they can’t answer it. It’s evident to everyone in the world that they do. I don’t understand why they just can’t openly say outside what everyone knows.”

Asked whether he thinks Wooster was posturing for diplomatic benefit, Chaffetz replied: “I don’t see any benefit for denying the truth.”