Tags: Barack Obama | Iran | Tim Kaine | Iran | nuclear deal | Bob Menendez | congressional

Sen. Tim Kaine: Iran Bill Will Not Hinder Talks

By    |   Thursday, 09 April 2015 05:39 PM

Virginia Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine says that if Congress passes a bill requiring that lawmakers get a chance to review the Iran nuclear deal that the Obama administration is negotiating that it will not hinder those negotiations.

"There is zero chance that Corker-Menendez passing will harm these negotiations," Kaine told The Washington Post.

"Iran is very sophisticated. They want out from under congressional sanctions. They’ve known from the beginning that Congress would be involved in that," he explained.

"The question is, what is the process that Congress will use?" he asked.

"The letter from the 47 Republicans is engagement under a free-for-all. It’s much better to have congressional engagement under a standard that is agreed upon and timely, and I think this is deferential to the administration," the Virginia Democrat said.

Kaine supports a bill written by Tennessee Republican Sen. Bob Corker and New Jersey Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez, which, if passed, would require that the Iran deal be approved by Congress while Obama would not have the power to temporarily lift sanctions for a period of 65 days.

According to The Hill, there will likely be a vote on this measure in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Tuesday. Because there is enough Democratic support, the Senate would possibly have enough votes to override a presidential veto.

Obama called Corker Wednesday to discourage him from moving forward with the bill.

The White House "believes that the this principled approach to diplomacy is the best way for us to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon," White House press secretary Josh Earnest said.

The reason that Kaine believes that passing such a bill will not hinder the talks is "because a central aspect of this deal is what Iran must do to get out from under congressional sanctions. Congress will be involved in approving the final deal.

"The question is, will we be involved under rules that are structured and deliberate and timely, or will we get involved under free-for-all rules?" he asked.

"Corker-Menendez gives Congress rules that are defined in terms of procedures and timing, providing certainty that may even help the negotiators in the final phase of the negotiation," he added.

Since Iran wants to get out from under their current sanctions, they won't have an "incentive to really make major concessions if they have no idea about what Congress thinks or when Congress might act."

Passing a bill such as the Corker-Menendez bill, Kaine contends, will provide that "certainty."

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Virginia Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine says that if Congress passes a bill requiring that lawmakers get a chance to review the Iran nuclear deal that the Obama administration is negotiating that it will not hinder those negotiations.
Tim Kaine, Iran, nuclear deal, Bob Menendez, congressional
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2015-39-09
Thursday, 09 April 2015 05:39 PM
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