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Hagel: Iran Has "An Elected, Legitimate Government"

CHUCK HAGEL: Well, let’s start with a specific question on a vote, regarding designating the Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization. You recall, because you were there, there were 22 senators who voted against that. The effort against it — the main point made on the floor of the Senate came from Senator Jim Webb. And his point was we have never, ever designated a part of a legitimate government, a state — and when I say “legitimate,” that doesn’t mean we agree with Iran, but it is a member of the United Nations. Almost all of our allies have embassies in Iran. So that’s why I note — an elected, legitimate government, whether we agree or not. But we have never made any part of a legitimate, independent government, designated them or made part — made them part of a terrorist organization. We’ve just — we’ve never done that.

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