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Friday, 30 January 2015

During talks, Iran has executed 700+ people & enriched Uranium for 2 nukes.

Stop the Clock on a Nuclear Iran

Prevent Nuclear War in Middle East with an Insurance Policy for the President’s Diplomacy

During negotiations with the United States, Iran has executed over 700 people, produced enough enriched uranium for 2 nuclear bombs and advanced a nuclear bomb-making program that brings us closer to nuclear war in the Middle East (see chart). In fact, Secretary of State John Kerry has said that Iran is only 2 months away from nuclear breakout. The clock is ticking on a nuclear Iran, and American citizens held hostage by Iran’s mullahs — such as Pastor Saeed Abedini and Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian — can’t afford for us to wait.

Today I introduced S. 269, the Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act of 2015, a bipartisan bill to give the American people an insurance policy if the President’s diplomacy with Iran fails. Known as the Kirk-Menendez bill, the legislation would impose crippling economic pressure if Iran refuses to agree to a deal that decisively ends its nuclear threat by the Administration’s own June 30th deadline.

The Chicago TribuneWall Street Journal, and Washington Post have endorsed the Kirk-Menendez Iran legislation. That’s, in part, because even the President admits that earlier Iran sanctions laws co-authored by Senator Kirk forced Iran back to negotiations. Kirk-led Iran sanctions decreased the value of Iranian currency by 73%, crippling Iran’s economy (see chart).

By temporarily easing sanctions during the current negotiations, however, the Administration has reversed the effect of the Menendez-Kirk sanctions. During 2015, Iran’s economy is projected to grow for the first time since 2012. The administration would rather appease Iran with enough money to fund Hezbollah for over 40 years than use the tried and true method of sanctions to force Iran to take negotiations seriously (see chart).

Congress now needs to maintain a united front in order to stop the regime from getting nuclear weapons. In fact, Congress has already passed sanctions with a veto-proof majority four times:

  • The Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010(Public Law 111-195) passed the Senate in a 99-to-0 vote on June 24, 2010, and the House in a 408-to-8 vote on June 24, 2010.
  • During consideration of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (Public Law 112-81), the Menendez-Kirk amendment to impose Central Bank of Iran (CBI) sanctions passed the Senate in a 100-to-0 vote on December 1, 2011. 
  • The Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012 (Public Law 112-158) passed the House in a 421-to-6 vote on August 1, 2012, and the Senate in a voice vote on August 1, 2012.
  • During consideration of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (Public Law 112-239), the Iran Freedom and Counter-Proliferation Act of 2012, a Menendez-Kirk-Lieberman amendment to impose sanctions on Iran’s energy, shipping, and shipbuilding and port sectors, passed the Senate in a 94-to-0 vote on November 30, 2012. 

A good nuclear deal with Iran will be comprehensive, airtight and long-lasting. I hope for a diplomatic breakthrough, but without new economic pressure, Iran will only get closer to a nuclear bomb.

Read the full bill here: 

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