American People Must Have Voice in Any Iran Deal
Washington – U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) released the following statement following Senate passage of the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015. The bill, which Senator Scott cosponsored along with sixty six of his Senate colleagues, requires President Obama to submit any final nuclear deal with Iran to Congress for approval before being able to waive or suspend congressional sanctions.
“A nuclear armed Iran is unacceptable, plain and simple. Because of their own actions, Iran remains a recognized state sponsor of terror and one of the most dangerous actors in the world. I believe that as the Obama administration continues to look at any agreement with Iran that Congress andthe American people must have voice in any possible deal.
The passage of the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act is an important step toward ensuring that no nuclear deal is reached with Iran without appropriate scrutiny. Even in the face of an unwilling White House that sought to derail this legislation at every turn, there is strong, bipartisan opposition to any attempt by this president to go it alone. I hope the president now understands that this issue has never been partisan, but one of common sense and concern for the American people and our security.”
The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015 contains the following key provisions:
·Congressional Review:Within five days of concluding a comprehensive agreement with Iran, the president must submit to Congress (1) the text of the agreement and all related materials, (2) a verification assessment on Iranian compliance, and (3) a certification that the agreement meets U.S. non-proliferation objectives and does not jeopardize U.S. national security, including not allowing Iran to pursue nuclear-related military activities.
·No Suspension of Congressional Sanctions During Review Period:The president is prohibited from suspending, waiving or otherwise reducing congressional sanctions for up to 52 days after submitting the agreement to Congress. Following an initial review period of 30 days, the legislation includes an additional 12 days if Congress passes a bill and sends it to the president. If the president vetoes the legislation, Congress would have an additional 10 days to override a veto. If the deal is submitted between July 10 and September 7, the review period increases to up to 82 days (60 days plus 12 days for the president to veto and 10 more days for Congress to override a veto). During this period, Congress may hold hearings and approve, disapprove or take no action on the agreement. Passage of a joint resolution of disapproval (over a presidential veto) within the review period would permanently prevent the president from waiving or suspending the congressional sanctions.
·Congressional Oversight and Iranian Compliance:After the congressional review period, the president would be required to provide an assessment to Congress every 90 days on Iran’s compliance with the agreement. In the event the president cannot certify compliance, or if the president determines there has been a material breach of the agreement, Congress could vote, on an expedited basis, to restore sanctions that had been waived or suspended under the agreement. It also requires the president to make a series of detailed reports to Congress on a range of issues, including Iran’s nuclear program, its ballistic missiles work, and its support for terrorism globally, particularly against Americans and our allies. With this information, Congress will be able to determine the appropriate response in the event of Iran sponsoring an act of terrorism against Americans.