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Rubio wants DOJ to find out if Kerry broke law by meeting with Iranians

Rubio wants DOJ to find out if Kerry broke law by meeting with Iranians
© Greg Nash

Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioSunday shows preview: Trade talks, Cohen sentencing memo take center stage Meadows says 'too early to tell' if special House election should be held in North Carolina Kobach ‘very concerned’ voter fraud may have happened in North Carolina MORE (R-Fla.) on Tuesday called on the Department of Justice to investigate whether former Secretary of State John KerryJohn Forbes KerryMajor Obama 2008 fundraiser throws support behind Beto 2020: ‘Time to pass the torch’ Would-be 2020 Dem candidates head for the exits Mellman: Dems’ presidential pick will be chosen in a flash MORE broke federal laws by meeting with Iranian diplomats after leaving office to discuss the nuclear deal with Tehran.

"The American people deserve to know that U.S. laws are enforced regardless of any individual’s past position," Rubio wrote in a letter to the Justice Department, suggesting that Kerry may have violated the Logan Act or the Foreign Agents Registration Act. 

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The Logan Act bars individuals from having private negotiations with foreign governments against U.S. interests, while the Foreign Agents Registration Act requires agents representing the interests of foreign powers to disclose their relationships with international governments.

Kerry has previously defended himself against such claims, saying there is nothing unusual about his contacts with Iranians and other foreign diplomats.

Kerry played a crucial role in crafting the Obama-era agreement, which lifted sanctions on Iran in exchange for limits on its nuclear program. President TrumpDonald John TrumpJoaquín Castro: Trump would be 'in court right now' if he weren't the president or 'privileged' Trump flubs speech location at criminal justice conference Comey reveals new details on Russia probe during House testimony MORE earlier this year pulled the United States out of the deal.

Kerry told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt earlier this month that he had met with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif “three or four” times since leaving office to discuss the nuclear deal and other issues.

Trump last week harshly criticized Kerry over those meetings, calling them "illegal."

“John Kerry had illegal meetings with the very hostile Iranian Regime, which can only serve to undercut our great work to the detriment of the American people. He told them to wait out the Trump Administration! Was he registered under the Foreign Agents Registration Act? BAD!” Trump wrote in a tweet.

Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoTrump attends Army-Navy game Trump reportedly demanding more funding from South Korea for American troops’ presence Heather Nauert is the wrong choice for UN ambassador MORE also attacked Kerry over the meetings last week, calling them "unseemly and unprecedented" but saying he would "leave the legal determinations to others."

A spokesperson for Kerry defended the former secretary of State in a statement provided to The Hill last week, saying that there was "nothing unusual, let alone unseemly or inappropriate" about the meetings.

“Secretary Kerry stays in touch with his former counterparts around the world just like every previous Secretary of State, and in a long phone conversation with Secretary Pompeo earlier this year he went into great detail about what he had learned about the Iranian’s view. No secrets were kept from this administration,” the spokesperson said.