Biden’s Iran Envoy Just Became a Target of Scandal

( – President Biden’s special envoy to Iran Robert Malley has been suspended without pay after already losing his security clearance several months ago. The State Department was investigating Malley’s possible mishandling of secret documents but he was still on the job, just not permitted to work around any classified material.

However, Malley is now off the job and has commented that he hopes the situation will be “resolved favorably and soon.”

The State Department has not commented on the suspension but notes that Malley is still the special envoy to Iran and his duties will be filled in by his associate Abram Paley while he is suspended. Malley has been a leading proponent of restarting the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), colloquially known as the “Iran nuclear deal,” in which Iran agreed to inspections and limits of its nuclear program. Former President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the JCPOA in May of 2018, calling it the “worst deal in history.”

Malley was one of those who helped design the deal under the Obama Administration and he believed it was best for regional stability and negotiating with Iran to bring the deal back, however Malley’s efforts did not bring any results. His focus on reviving the Iran nuclear deal was also sidelined by the rise of intense protests after Iran’s 2022 murder of Mahsa Amini, who had been in jail for failure to adhere to Iranian hijab laws.

For their part, opponents of the Biden administration such as Republican Congressman Michael McCaul of Texas have slammed the ongoing controversy around Malley, complaining that the “failure to inform Congress” could represent an attempt to deliberately mislead or keep lawmakers in the dark. In a recent letter to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, McCaul demanded a classified briefing be given to the House Foreign Affairs Committee which he chairs before the end of the month. McCaul wants to address what is going on with Malley and why he is on leave. McCaul says this is necessary to address and answer the “serious concerns” surrounding Malley’s suspension.

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