Iran nuclear deal

Republican lawmakers slam Biden administration after Iran nuclear deal progress

“President Biden can’t stop Congress nor a future GOP admin from reimposing Iran sanctions. If Iran is looking for “guarantees,” I guarantee conservatives will work to reverse any of Biden’s sanctions relief,” a senior Republican lawmaker said.

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Republican lawmakers slammed the Biden administration on Tuesday as reports indicated that a nuclear deal with Iran was imminent.

The top Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Michael McCaul, sent a letter to US President Joe Biden, saying that Congress was not being properly updated on the proposals being set forth by the administration.

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A senior US official said on Tuesday that gaps still remained between the US and Iran over reviving the 2015 nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). In a statement to Al Arabiya English, the official said Iran would have to take many steps to dismantle its nuclear program under a new deal.

Sanctions relief and a softened US stance on Iran, which continues to fund and support proxies and militias across the Middle East, would be offered in return for Iran taking steps to curb its nuclear program.

“Members of Congress have expressed wide-ranging concerns regarding the national security implications of nuclear negotiations, including with respect to the Iranian regime’s chilling assassination plots against American citizens on US soil,” McCaul said.

McCaul reminded Biden that Congress must review any agreement under the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act (INARA). But Biden administration officials, despite saying they would brief lawmakers when and if a deal is reached, have signaled ways around needing Congressional approval.

“It is completely unreasonable for this administration to think that a review could be favorable without a robust history of engagement with Congress, to include an increased tempo of briefings as negotiations reach their purported end game,” McCaul said. “As the elected representatives of the American people, it is vital Congress have a clear view over how any agreement with Iran does or does not address the full scope of Iran’s malign activities.”

Separately, Congressman Jim Banks threatened to reverse any sanctions relief for Iran.

“President Biden can’t stop Congress nor a future GOP admin from reimposing Iran sanctions. If Iran is looking for “guarantees,” I guarantee conservatives will work to reverse any of Biden’s sanctions relief,” Banks, a senior Republican lawmaker, said in a tweet. “My Max Pressure Act with over 130+ cosponsors would do just that.”

Senator Ted Cruz, a longtime critic of the Iran deal and the Iranian regime, lambasted the Biden administration for the deal that will be “catastrophic to the national security of America and our allies, and to the safety of Americans.”

Cruz cited plots by Iranian nationals linked to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) to assassinate former National Security Advisor John Bolton, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and dissidents on US soil.

“I intend to systematically fight the implementation of this catastrophic deal, and will work with my colleagues to ensure that it is blocked and eventually reversed in January 2025,” he said, in an apparent reference to a new presidential term after the 2024 elections.

Read more: US denies making new concessions to Iran in bid to revive 2015 nuclear deal

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