Mr. Cotton Goes to Washington

When 38-year-old Tom Cotton crossed the beltway as a new U.S. Senator from Arkansas, he had no idea he would be the center of attention in the ongoing global debate over a nuclear-armed Iran. And now he’s in the catbird seat in having forced President Obama to concede control.

Much ado has been made by Democrats in recent days after a letter authored by Sen. Cotton and signed by 46 other senators was sent directly to Tehran which warns that what agreement Secretary of State John Kerry is able to negotiate with Iran on behalf of the Obama administration is subject to Senate approval.

Democrats have cried treason and called for the arrest of the so-called ’47 traitors.’ But, as conservative blogger Erick Erickson points out, such a move is hardly unprecedented.

Erickson recalled the revelation after the collapse of the Soviet Union that Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA) had worked behind the scenes to undo the diplomatic strategy of President Ronald Reagan. Similarly, Democrat Reps. John Bonior and Jim McDermott appeared publicly with Saddam Hussein in a show of solidarity against President George W. Bush in 2002.

And the closest analog to Cotton’s strategic letter can be seen in the move by Democrat Leader Rep. Jim Wright after he sent a letter to communist General Daniel Ortega, signed by multiple Democrat colleagues, which promised opposition to President Reagan’s policies.

What has the bee in the Democrats’ bonnet, Erickson argues, is that the letter is not only legal but it’s a strategy right out of the Democrat playbook which has now forced President Obama to admit that the three branches of American government are actually separate and equal in their respective authorities.