Joe Biden on Iran: 'There Is No Weapon,' 'Facts Matter'

Vice president disagrees with Paul Ryan on nuclear program timeline, sanctions.
3:00 | 10/11/12

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Transcript for Joe Biden on Iran: 'There Is No Weapon,' 'Facts Matter'
-- war to Iraq I'd I'd actually like to move to Iran because there's really no bigger nationals -- -- This country is facing both President Obama and governor Romney have said they will prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon. Even if that means military action. Last week former Defense Secretary Bob gates at a strike on Iran's facilities would not work and quote could prove catastrophic. Haunting us for generations. Can the two -- you be absolutely clear and specific to the American people how effective would a military strike -- congress. We cannot allow Iran to gain nuclear weapons capability. Now let's take a look at where we've got come from. When Barack Obama was elected. They had enough. It's a material. Nuclear material to make one bomb now be enough for -- they're reaching toward nuclear -- -- four years closer toward nuclear weapons capability. -- at four different sanctions that you -- on Iran three from the Bush Administration won here. And the only reason we got is because Russia watered down and prevented the sanctions from hitting the Central Bank. Mitt Romney proposing sanctions 2007 in congress have been fighting for these sanctions since 2009. The administration was blocking us every step of the way. Only because we had strong bipartisan support for these tough sanctions were we able to overrule their objections and put them in spite of the administration. Imagine what would have happen if we -- these sanctions in place earlier. You -- a -- operation look at what they're doing. They're stepping up their terrorist attacks they tried a terrorist attack in the United States last year when they try to blow up the Saudi ambassador at a restaurant in Washington DC. And talk about credibility. When this administration says that all options -- on the table they send out senior administration a fish officials that -- all these mixed signals. And so in order to solve this peacefully which is everybody's goal. You have to have a Ayatollah change their minds. Look at where they are they're moving faster toward a nuclear weapon. It's because this administration has no credibility -- this issue. It's because this administration. Watered down sanctions delayed sanctions try to stop us we -- a tough decision to place now we have -- in place because of congress. They say the military options on the table but -- not being viewed as credible and the key is to do this peacefully. To make sure that we -- credibility. -- Romney administration we will have credibility on this issue. -- -- It's incredible. Look imagine had we let the Republican congress work -- the sanctions. -- any possibility. The entire world would have joined us Russia and China. All of our allies is in the most crippling sanctions history of sanctions period. Period. When governor Romney's asked about it he said we gotta keep the sanctions. When you say we're talking about doing what what -- you you're gonna go to war is that what you wanna do an African or Arab and -- -- -- is how to gonna prevent war. Informant word they say they're there's nothing more that we that they say we should do and what we've already done number one and number two. With regard to the ability of the United States to take action militarily. It is it is not my purview to talk about -- information but we feel quite confident. We could deal a serious blows to the theories. But number -- Iranians are the Israelis in the United States our military intelligence communities are absolutely the same exact place. In terms of how close how close. The Iranians are to getting -- nuclear weapons. They are a good way away there's no difference between our view and -- when my friend talks about fissile material. They have to take this highly enriched uranium get a from 20%. Up then they have to be able to have something to put -- There is no weapon that the rings -- at this point. Both the Israelis and we know we don't know if they start the process of building wept so all this bluster I keep hearing all this loose talk. What are talking about are you talking about. To be more credible that's what what more can the president do stand before the United Nations tell the whole world directly communicating yet told. We will not let them acquire a nuclear weapon. Period -- -- he's talking about going to war. Martha. Let's just so let's look at this from the view of the I tell us what did they see. They see this administration trying to water down -- in congress for over two years. They're moving faster toward nuclear weapons there spinning the centrifuges faster they see -- saying when we come into the administration when they're sworn in. We need more space for their ally Israel. They see President Obama in New York City the same day Bibi Netanyahu is -- east instead of meeting with him goes on and on a daily talk show. They see. When we say that these options are on the table the secretary defense walk them back. They are not changing their mind. That's what we have to do is change their mind so based. Up pursuant if you're going -- -- -- it -- Q you both saw. Benjamin Netanyahu hold up that picture of a bomb with the Red Line and talking about the Red Line being -- spy ring. So can you solve this if if the Ronnie Ryan ticket. Is elected can use all of this in two months before spring and avoid nuclear -- Nuclear week we can debate as time line clear we can debate time line whether there's expect short timer longer -- -- agree that is probably longer. Number two. It's what I agree with that -- well Israelis let you know we all vice president I don't I'm going to -- -- -- but will we both agree. That to do this peacefully you've got to get them to change their minds they're not change their minds and look at what this country what do you do retirement the -- was have to -- -- -- -- economy being crippled. The Ayatollah sees. That there are 50%. Fewer exports of oil. He stays the currencies going in the -- he sees the economy going into freefall NEC's the world for the first time totally united in opposition. To him getting a nuclear weapon no regard to -- he's been my friend for 39 years. The president met would be be a dozen times. He spoke it would be -- -- -- now as much as you spoken to anybody the idea that we're not in. I was -- just before he went to the UN I was in a conference call with the with the president or with him talking to be -- for. Well over an hour and and it would it would have been Starker relief indeed tell was going not. This is a bunch of stuff look here's the deal what does that mean a bunch stuff well it means -- since. And the -- Irish. -- -- -- But we are is -- -- -- As columnist -- but last thing. The secretary of defense has made it absolutely -- walking back we will not allow. The Iranians to get a nuclear weapon. Would baby held up there was where they get to the point where they can enrich uranium enough to put into a weapon. They don't. Had a weapon to put it to. Let's -- all -- about little bit here. Iran has more isolated today do we took office. It was on the ascendancy when we took office it is totally isolated. I don't think what world Jack thank heavens we have these sanctions in place. It's in spite of their opposite. They'd given twenty waivers -- -- And all I have to point to are the results. There for years closer toward nuclear weapons. And -- -- -- case if you tell the -- by the -- there are worse in other words -- locally was important thing happened. There if there -- closer to be able to get enough fissile material to put a weapon if they had a weapon. You're a little bit like they don't want on oh I didn't second -- -- facts matter Martha. Your foreign policy expert facts matter. All this loose talk about them all they have to do is get to enrich uranium at a certain amount and they have weapons not. True not true -- are more and if we ever have to take action. I don't like who we took office we will have the world behind us and that matters. That editors. Bob gates statement. -- read that again could prove catastrophic. Haunting -- for generations. He is right it could prove catastrophic. If we don't Jim Ryan the fish and what it dies his inner undermines our credibility. By backing up the point when we make it that all options -- on the table that's the point. The Ayatollah see these kinds of statements and they think. I'm gonna get a nuclear weapons. When. When we see. The kind of equivocation that took place because this administrative cherish and wanted to precondition policy so in the green revolution started up these were silent for nine days. When they see us putting -- desperate -- -- is putting daylight between ourselves. And our allies and Israel. That gives them encouragement. When they see Russia watering down any further sanctions the only reason we got a UN sanctions because Russia watered down and prevent the sanctioning sanctions in the first place. So when they see this kind of activity. They are encouraged to continue and -- on -- -- -- -- let me ask you what's worse. War in the Middle East another war and -- -- nuclear under. I tell -- -- a nuclear armed Iran which triggers a nuclear arms race in the Middle East this is the world's largest sponsor of terrorism. They -- themselves -- -- an entire country off the map they call us the great Satan. If they get nuclear weapons other people -- neighborhood will pursue their nuclear weapons as well vice president -- -- live with that. War should always be absolute last resort. That's why these crippling sanctions would Bibi Netanyahu says we should continue. Which if I want mistaken governor -- this -- we should continue. I may be mistaken he changed his mind so often I could be wrong but the fact of the matter is he says they work. And the fact is that they are being crippled but. And we've made it clear and nations can laugh this president doesn't --

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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