U.S. Senate Democrats’ final blockage of a resolution rejecting the Iran nuclear agreement Thursday hands a legislative victory to President Barack Obama.
He also wants the U.S.to improve Israel’s ability to strike Iranian targets; ensure Israel’s access to ordnance and aircraft needed to deter an Iranian attack; and provide for the sale of additional F-35s, plus more funding for Israel’s array of anti-rocket and missile defense systems. An amendment to stop the USA from lifting sanctions on Iran until the release of USA prisoners and recognition of Israel could not muster enough votes to pass.
With Democrats objecting to adding non-nuclear issues to consideration of the nuclear deal, that procedural vote was 53-45, meaning the measure failed to attract the 60 votes it would need to advance.
· Right now, even with sanctions punishing Iran, it is only two to three months away from having the material to develop a nuclear weapon.
The toughly worded and politically sensitive amendment was designed to pressure Democrats – most of whom support the Iran deal – to choose between the implementation of the agreement and their commitment to Israel and Americans held in Iran.
Fred Flietz, with the Center for Security Policy: “It’s a bad place to invest the business climate is awful, there’s a concern among western businessman of what can happen to them, they know that Americans have been arrested for no reason in Iran, there’s also a concern by many worldwide firms that if a republican is elected next year he or she is going to implement harsh sanctions on Iran and any investment will be lost”.
According to Reuters, the GOP resolution was four votes shy of getting the 60 votes it needs in order to proceed. It requires only marginal changes to Iran’s nuclear program, while allowing Iran to maintain technology that would lead to a nuclear weapon. “If the Republican leader has his way, all the Senate will do for the rest of this week is take yet another failed vote on Iran”.
“This cynical tactic is a waste of the Senate’s time“, Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., complained on the Senate floor, contending that lawmakers should instead be working on legislation to fund the government and prevent a partial shutdown ahead of a September 30 deadline. Asked if he would authorize a strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities, Sen.
In the coming months, Iran, the worldwide Atomic Energy Agency, the United States and other major powers will prepare for the deal’s formal implementation, the officials said.
Congressional Republicans, including Montana’s Rep. Ryan Zinke and Sen.
No sanctions relief will occur until all the steps are completed, they insisted, but they said Obama would start issuing waivers on October 18 so that the US can fulfill its end of the bargain once the IAEA verifies Iran’s full compliance.