Great news coming out today, as Congress finally stood up to Obama and passed legislation which would require Obama to allow the Senate to review the full text of his proposed agreement with Iran, and also preventing Obama from promising sanction-relief to the Iranians until AFTER the requirements are met. It potentially opens the door for Congress to kill the deal altogether, by holding up sanction relief.
Republican opponents of the nuclear agreement on the committee sided with Mr. Obama’s strongest Democratic supporters in demanding a congressional role as international negotiators work to turn this month’s nuclear framework into a final deal by June 30. The bill would mandate that the administration send the text of a final accord, along with classified material, to Congress as soon as it it completed. It also halts any lifting of sanctions during a congressional review and culminates in a possible vote to allow or forbid the lifting of congressionally imposed sanctions in exchange for the dismantling of much of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure. It passed 19 to 0.
President Obama said he will likely sign the bill, which seems to be a surrender on his part. During his State of the Union address, President Obama promised to veto any legislation that might throw a wrench into his Iran negotiations, such as new sanctions. While this bill is not extra sanctions, it does hurt Obama by tying his hands on sanction relief.
The fact that Obama isn’t going to veto this bill, or even fight it, shows that maybe Obama has had enough of a PR beating over his Iran deal. Democrats and Republicans have joined forces to oppose Obama and stop him from simply giving away concessions to the Iranians.
We still don’t know how bad his final proposal with Iran might be, but at least now Congress will have the right to review that deal. It’s not a total defeat for Obama’s bad deal with Iran but it’s a step in the right direction.