Meet the Press | December 22, 2013
>> so here's a question about holding firm that some of the papers in new york are asking about you, and the topic sigh ran and new sanctions on iran . you and others are pushing for it. the president was asked about it in his press conference and he said, look, don't do it, senator schumer. he didn't call you out by name, but in effect he did. he says he knows it's good politics. that for you in office and running for office, you can look tough on iran . he's basically saying give me room to negotiate with iran and see if i can shut down this nuclear program . back off on sanctions for now. how do you respond?
>> look, there are many of us, democrats and republicans in this senate who believe the best way to avoid war and get around to give up nuclear weapons is by ratcheting up sanctions, not by reducing them. the iranians didn't come to the table out of the goodness of their heart. they're still labeled a supremacist organization, the leader is still pulling the strings. only tough sanctions will get them to give up. i give the president credit for talking. i don't agree with some on the hard line who say no talking until they give up everything. but the bottom line is very simple. it's pretty logical that it's sanctions, tough sanctions, that brought them to the table. if they think they can ease up on the sanctions without getting rid of their nuclear capabilities, they're going to do that. so we have to be tough. and the legislation we put in says to the iranians, if you don't come to an agreement after six months and the president can extend it to a year, the sanctions are going to toughen up. i think that will make them negotiate better and give up more.