Obama to sign Iran sanctions extension
The Senate passed a 10 year extension of Iran sanctions and President Obama was given little choice but to sign the legislation.
The vote was 99-0.
Still, Obama objected to the sanctions bill and said it wouldn't interfere with the nuclear deal.
“We believe the Iran Sanctions Act extension is not necessary, but we also believe it won’t interfere with the Iran [nuclear] deal,” said deputy White House press secretary Eric Schultz. “I would expect the president to sign this piece of legislation.”
Administration officials lobbied lawmakers to drop the measure, saying the president already has sweeping authority to reimpose sanctions that were lifted under a nuclear agreement with Iran. The White House is worried that the move could undermine moderates in Iran.
But lawmakers in both parties said the legislation was needed to warn Tehran about consequences if it violates the terms of the nuclear deal.
“Congress’ action today should send a signal to the Iranian government and to the world that the United States is serious about enforcement of the nuclear agreement,” Sen. Ben Cardin, Maryland Democrat, said in a statement after the Senate’s 99-0 vote on Thursday.
This was an easy vote for Senators who will use it in the future to show how tough they are on Iran. They might have shown some backbone when the original vote was taken on the nuclear deal.
These are not international sanctions. They are aimed mostly at individuals and companies in Iran owned by members of the Revolutionary Guards. Travel restrictions and financial strictures won't prevent Iran from building a bomb.
As expected, Iran condemned the sanctions and called America "unreliable." But they realize these milquetoast santions will be less than an inconvenience and won't affect any plans they have to build a nuclear weapon.