(CNSNews.com) - Regime change in Iran is "not the policy of the administration," National Security Adviser John Bolton told ABC's "This Week" on Sunday. "The policy of the administration is to make sure that Iran never gets close to deliverable nuclear weapons," he said.
But on CNN's "State of the Union," Bolton noted that getting out of the Iran nuclear deal will result in the reimposition of American sanctions on Iran: "And I think what we've seen is that Iran's economic condition is really quite shaky, so that the effect here could be dramatic," Bolton told CNN's Jake Tapper.
Tapper noted that Bolton repeatedly pushed for regime change in Iran before he became national security adviser. "I know that is not the current position of the United States government. But are you behind the scenes pushing for it to become the position of the United States government, regime change?" Tapper asked Bolton.
Bolton replied that he has "written and said a lot of things over the years when I was a complete free agent. I certainly stand by what I said at the time. But -- but those were my opinions then.
"The circumstance I'm in now is that I'm the national security adviser to the president. I'm not the national security decision-maker. He makes the decisions, and the advice I give him is between us."
Meanwhile, CBS's "Face the Nation" started on Sunday with a report from foreign correspondent Elizabeth Palmer in Tehran. Host Margaret Brennan asked Palmer how Iranian citizens are reacting to the U.S. pulling out of the nuclear deal:
"Well, the hard-liners hit the streets after President Trump's decision, with the old cries of 'Death to America,'" Palmer responded. "But they and everybody else are actually much more angry with their own government. They're fed up, because they haven't had salary increases. There are no jobs. There's corruption. And, most of all, they say the Iranian government can offer nothing but a bleak future.
"I have never heard people so angry here. At the moment, the government is keeping a lid on little protests that have been springing up everywhere, but it's anyone's guess how long they can maintain stability," Palmer concluded.