Iran is engaged in active “conversations and various dialogues” with the Obama administration to get “considerable sums of money,” President Hassan Rouhani told Chuck Todd in an interview that aired yesterday.

This follows news – uncovered in a series of reports – that the Obama administration paid Iran, the world’s leading state sponsor of terror, $1.7 billion earlier this year in an exchange that was specifically linked to the release of American hostages in Iran.

Here’s video and analysis from NBC’s Chuck Todd and Andrea Mitchell:

Todd Rouhani

Chuck Todd: “[President Rouhani’s] answer to me on the quid pro quo allegation and accusation when it comes to the money that does go back to 1979 that was frozen here – Iranian money – and hostages, what was stunning is that he didn’t deny it and I thought he hinted that these parallel track conversations may continue in the future. Does this mean they think this is the best way to get the money?

Andrea Mitchell:I think they now see they can have some leverage by holding dual nationals. I think this is a clear warning to any Iranian-American not to go home to visit the relatives. Because he is saying that their legal system does not give them any protection. They don’t recognize our laws and they are going to continue to see what they can get by these negotiations.”

Chuck Todd: “That’s a frightening interpretation.”

Frightening, indeed.  And sadly this is just the latest in what’s become an alarming trend of Iran taking advantage of a White House that will seemingly do anything to secure and preserve its nuclear deal.

“Since the [nuclear] agreement was put in place, Iran has seized more Americans, accelerated its missile program, tried to embarrass our military, and escalated its rhetoric against our friends around the world,” Rep. Dave Trott (R-MI) said Tuesday.  “An emboldened Iran places the entire world at risk.”

That’s why, later this evening, the House will pass Chairman Ed Royce’s bill to block ransoms — and any other cash payments to the Iranian regime.  This is about keeping Americans safe.