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Al Franken: Trump's Iran decision 'undercuts our leadership'

Al Franken: Trump's Iran decision 'undercuts our leadership'
© Greg Nash

Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenSenate GOP beats expectations with expanded majority Democrat Smith wins in Minnesota, will serve remainder of Franken term Harvey Weinstein accused of sexually assaulting 16-year-old girl: reports MORE (D-Minn.) on Sunday said if the U.S. pulls out of the Iran nuclear deal, it will undercut Washington's leadership role in the world as well as hurt the U.S.'s credibility going forward.

"Our European allies, Russia, China, are not going to pull out so it will just leave us isolated. It undercuts our leadership in the world and, boy, with North Korea, this doesn't help," Franken told host Kasie Hunt on MSNBC's "Kasie DC."

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"What kind of message does that send, that we abrogate every treaty that we sign, whether it's Paris or this? Or every agreement? This just undermines our nation as a leader," he continued.

Franken defended the Obama-era nuclear agreement, saying it helped keep Tehran from getting its hands on a nuclear weapon. 

"By the way, this was a good deal. It means that Iran will not get a nuclear weapon. Imagine where we'd be on those other issues if Iran had gotten to a nuclear weapon," the Minnesota lawmaker said.

Franken pointed to the comments made by Secretary of State Rex TillersonRex Wayne TillersonWhite House ousts Sessions Trump downplays potential turnover: 'Everybody wants to work in this White House' Trump says Cabinet changes likely after midterms MORE and other top administration officials who argue the U.S. should stay in the agreement, but seek amendments to the pact.

"They have been saying Iran is in compliance and pulling out of this deal is bad for the United States and in so many different ways," Franken said.

His remarks come after Trump on Friday announced that he wouldn't certify that Iran was complying with the requirements set forward by the multilateral deal. Trump argued the Iran nuclear deal is no longer serving U.S. national security interests and accused Tehran of committing "multiple violations of the agreement." 

“I am announcing today that we cannot and will not make this certification,” Trump said during a speech at the White House on Friday, while stopping short of withdrawing from the accord that he has repeatedly criticized.

Trump's announcement leaves the fate of the deal in the hands of Congress, which has 60 days to decide whether Iran will be slapped with economic sanctions that were lifted under the deal.