Dickerson noted President Obama’s recent assertion that the Republicans who are striving to kill the agreement are “making common cause” with the hardliners in Iran who oppose the deal. “Schumer and his opposition to this reckless nuclear deal with Iran”, he said in a statement.
During a senate hearing Wednesday on the deal, Schumer called this the most important vote of his political career, and he said he wouldn’t be swayed by the intense lobbying effort from the White House. Schumer insisted he was not influenced by party or politics and had not been pressured. While the decision was not entirely unexpected, it opened the door for others to come out against the deal.
It was the lefty Huffington Post that actually broke the news that Schumer would oppose the deal – an apparent leak from the White House.
“It doesn’t change our confidence that we’ll be able to mobilize a substantial majority of Democrats in both the House and the Senate in support of the deal and, if necessary, to sustain the president’s veto“.
Sen. Bernie Sanders, a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, announced Friday he will support an agreement with Iran to limit its nuclear program.
However, Rep. Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, announced his opposition yesterday.
Schumers decision was a blow to the administration, though it remained to be seen how many other Democratic lawmakers would follow the New York senator.
Schumer’s split with Obama was remarkable for a senior leader in line to replace Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid after he retires at the end of next year.
Obama recently argued that numerous critics of the deal are the same people that pushed for the U.S. invasion of Iraq and compared lawmakers opposed to the deal with the hardliners in Iran.
Congress has until September 17 to accept or reject the deal or take no action.
The most powerful Jewish voice in Congress, Schumer is also a serious power broker in the Democratic Party.
“Now I know that I’m known as such a vocal advocate of electing Democrats, but Chuck Schumer this week came out against this Iranian nuclear deal”.
Obama has promised a veto if the resolution is passed by the House and Senate.
Schumer added, “Therefore, I will vote to disapprove the agreement, not because I believe war is a viable or desirable option, nor to challenge the path of diplomacy“.
So far, at least 14 Senate Democrats and independents who vote with Democrats and about 34 House Democrats have announced they would back the deal.
Schumer’s measured approach stands in stark contrast to Obama’s deeply offensive attempt to politicize the dispute and to smear Israel along the way.
He said the provisions for unfettered inspections of suspect nuclear facilities were insufficient, and that the system to reimpose sanctions if Iran cheats was “cumbersome and hard to use”.