The U.S. and other world powers, collectively known as the P5+1, are on the brink of making a historic deal to ensure Iran doesn’t get a nuclear bomb. Members of Congress are choosing sides now between allowing the diplomatic talks to continue to progress and taking action that could derail the talks.
Senate champions of diplomacy Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Chris Murphy (D-CT) and nine of their colleagues are offering a resolution in strong support of the ongoing negotiations between the US and our P5+1 partners to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran.
Diplomacy skeptics Senators Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Mark Kirk (R-IL), on the other hand, are attempting to garner support for draft legislation that would at best undermine U.S. diplomatic efforts, and at worst, lead the U.S. into another war in the Middle East. President Obama has threatened to veto such legislation, and British Prime Minister David Cameron and various high-ranking foreign ministers officials have voiced their opposition as well.
Yesterday, the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation and its sister advocacy organization Council for a Livable World sent a letter to senators providing an analysis of the draft Menendez-Kirk legislation and opposing it—or any congressional action—that might undermine negotiations or reverse the progress that’s already been made under the interim deal.
Later in day yesterday, the Feinstein-Murphy pro-diplomacy resolution was introduced. The Council and Center released the following statement from Executive Director Angela Canterbury:
This resolution is a strong declaration of support for diplomacy, and also makes it clear that if negotiations do not work, the Senate is prepared to act. We are pleased to endorse this resolution and applaud these Senators for their efforts to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran. We expect our negotiating partners will welcome this sensible measure to strengthen our hand with Iran in diplomatic talks. Meanwhile, other members of Congress have proposed legislation that would derail diplomacy, allowing Iran to pursue nuclear weapons, and hurling us into another war in the Middle East.
Read the letter opposing the draft “Nuclear Weapons Free Iran act of 2015 here.
Read the press statement in support of the Feinstein-Murphy resolution to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran here.