In a Time of Universal Deceit, Telling the Truth is Revolutionary.
Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Democrats welcome Obama’s push on Iran deal

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Determined to secure support for the Iran nuclear deal, President Barack Obama is making inroads with a tough constituency — his fellow Democrats in Congress.

A handful of key Democrats stepped forward to support the accord within hours of Obama’s personal lobbying at the White House last week, part of the administration’s all-out campaign since the pact was announced July 14. Other Democrats have signaled they are leaning in favor and still others have remained undeclared, awaiting a vote in September.

The deal, which curbs Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for relief from sanctions smothering its economy, is not a traditional fight between the White House and Republicans, who control the House and Senate. This is about Obama, who has often been at odds with congressional Democrats, trying to cajole them just weeks after a divisive debate over trade.

The president has talked to more than 80 lawmakers, either individually or in small groups, administration officials said. Obama, who delivers a speech on the deal Wednesday at American University, also hosted a reception for about 100 House Democrats at the White House.

Vice President Joe Biden has traveled to the Capitol and invited lawmakers for breakfast at the Naval Observatory. Cabinet and other administration officials have spoken with more than 175 lawmakers. A member of the International Atomic Energy Agency is expected to brief lawmakers this week.

Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz’s recent exchange with Maryland Rep. Steny Hoyer, the No. 3 Democratic leader in the House, shows the extent of the administration’s bend-over-backward persuasion campaign. “I’m briefing later,” Moniz told Hoyer in a hallway. “Are you coming? And if there’s anything you want to know more personally, give me a call. I can expand.”

Lawmakers can vote to approve, disapprove or take no action on the deal. Obama says he’ll veto a congressional disapproval and would need 34 members of the Senate or 146 members of the House to stand with him so Congress can’t override his veto.

“In the real world, this is a deal that gets the job done,” Obama said in a conference call with supporters.

Several Democrats said Obama’s detailed understanding of the accord won their respect.

Michigan Rep. Dan Kildee, who announced his support for the pact, said Obama knows as much about the deal as the negotiators. Kildee’s support was a victory for Obama because one of his constituents, former U.S. Marine Amir Hekmati, is among four Americans held or missing in Iran. Republicans have argued that the release of the four should have been a part of any final deal.

Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva said the administration’s robust selling of the deal strengthens the Democratic stance on Capitol Hill. “We don’t need to be an island right now,” said Grijalva, who has pledged to support it.

At one meeting at the White House, New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler said Obama acknowledged that the deal was not perfect and that Iran would still have an “odious” government.

“He makes an impressive case, but there are still questions I have,” said Nadler, a Jewish representative who has met one-on-one with the president.

The lengthy August recess will be a test, with multimillion-dollar ad campaigns and heavy lobbying by both sides, including the pro-Israel lobby, American Israel Public Affairs Committee. Some members of Congress are going on trips to Israel, with some arranged by the American Israel Education Foundation, a charitable organization affiliated with AIPAC, a deal foe.

Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., said he thinks most senators have an idea of how they’ll vote. “Probably everybody has a lean already,” he said, adding that he still is undecided and has lingering questions.

Democratic Caucus Chairman Rep. Xavier Becerra of California said he’s still talking to people on both sides of the issue. “I’m in no rush to make a decision because there’s no rush to cast a vote,” Becerra said.

Two House Democrats — New York’s Grace Meng and New Jersey’s Albio Sires — announced their opposition. But Democrats Seth Moulton of Massachusetts — a Marine Corps veteran of Iraq — and Beto O’Rourke of Texas backed it. House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi says Democrats would sustain a veto.

Democrats who are Jewish or represent districts with large Jewish populations are being heavily lobbied. Iran has threatened to destroy Israel, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has rejected the agreement.

Rep. Sander Levin of Michigan, a prominent Jewish Democrat, backed the deal. New Jersey Rep. Bill Pascrell, who is undecided but leaning toward approving the deal, said a former Israeli general who used to lead Israel’s Labor Party visited his office and surprisingly urged him to vote yes.

West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, who is leaning in favor of the deal, said, “There’s nobody that I know of in this whole Congress that’s basically not going to support Israel,” Manchin said. “But that being said, what pathway do we have?”

Last week, lawmakers said Obama gave a passionate defense of the deal, which he believes would be a gilded foreign policy peg in his presidential legacy. Congressional votes interrupted the meeting, but some 20 lawmakers took Obama up on his offer to return to the White House after the vote to ask questions for some two hours.

After the 60-day review, Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., said it was going to be a very important vote “to get right, even if it causes you political pain.”

___

Associated Press writers Laurie Kellman, Alan Fram and Julie Pace contributed to this report.

____________________________________________________________

Copyright © 2015 Capitol Hill Blue

Copyright  © 2015 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved

1 thought on “Democrats welcome Obama’s push on Iran deal”

  1. Good that it’s an election issue. Those that are anti-war will know clearly who voted for war and we can route hem out.

    A ‘No’ vote on Iran’s NPT is a vote for another Iraqi/Afghanistan war. ‘Yes’ gives us a chance to see if peace will work, there is still lots of time for war. Benny is not going to be too successful is selling another Bush WMD’s story. We’ve had enough liars misleading us. This has nothing to do with Israel’s security, this has to do with suppressing a geopolitical competitor. The US is not a puppet of Israel.

    A VOTE FOR NO IS A VOTE FOR ANOTHER IRAQI / AFGHANISTAN STYLE WAR. Do we want that? Can we afford that?

    The question is really that simple. Forget all those people trying to tell you what your opinion should be, the celebs bought and paid for, the massive media propaganda, the warmongering without fact or foundation. They want to turn this in Pro verses Anti Israel argument. They don’t want to tell facts, just leak bits and pieces of misinformation. There is no such thing as a perfect deal in negotiation that is a fantasy, the deal is excellent and quite an accomplishment.

    And in case you don’t get it a non proliferation agreement is NO NUKES, NO NUKES, NOT ONE FRIGGING NUKE PERIOD FOREVER. In case some are asleep Iran already has an existing stockpile to manufacture a dozen bombs. All of which they are giving up. If they wanted Nukes they would already have them. Not every government lies, spies, assassinates and does dirty tricks like Israel and their horrible leadership. With success, there will be futile ground to progress on other issues. Unfortunately Israel only knows how to use a club to negotiate peace. There leadership has to go as it represents the single most dangerous threat to Israeli security.

    Remember who voted ‘No’ so we can remove the warmongering puppets of Israel next election. Any presidential hopeful who votes ‘No’ will be a marked man. There will be no blaming on the intelligence services. They are either in the Israeli lobbyist pockets, or have confusion as to which government they serve, or lack the intelligence to understand the deal, (stupid). Not presidential or congressional material. There will be a backlash for this betrayal of the US public interest.

    Hezbollah could disappear over night if Benny was doing his job instead of trying to club everyone into submission. Without a club Benny is clueless. Iranians are all smiles these days. Israel is doing far more damage to it’s interests then Iran could ever do. I expect they will be a model treaty participant just to rub salt in Israel’s self inflicted wounds and they haven’t spent a penny to do it. Iran wants to improve life for their people, help Iraq fight ISIS and protect the religious sites. This is their priority, Isreal inflates it’s importance to Iran. They are laughing at Benny, soon they will be laughing at the Republicans, revealed for who they are.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: