Congressional Republicans are seeking to prevent the Biden administration from pursuing diplomatic efforts with Iran by pushing legislation for tough economic sanctions on the rogue state.
The Republican Study Committee, the largest conservative caucus in Congress, has penned three bills that would prevent the administration from lifting sanctions on Iran as part of any effort to bring the proponents of global terrorism back to the negotiating table. Biden seeks to renew discussions with Tehran after the Trump administration revoked Obama-era policies of appeasement and softball negotiation with the country.
The Washington Free Beacon, which received a copy of the legislative package, described the bills as an “opening salvo” in the Republican effort to prevent Biden from rejoining the nuclear deal. A prospective deal with Tehran would provide the illegitimate regime with potentially billions of dollars as a means of reconciliation. The Biden administration claims it will only rejoin the agreement if Iran agrees to hold back its efforts on developing nuclear weapons.
“The RSC’s 160 members say they will stand against sanctions relief for Iran until it ends its support for regional terror groups and rolls back its nuclear program, which Secretary of State Antony Blinken recently disclosed is potentially just ‘a matter of weeks’ away from producing an atomic weapon,” the Free Beacon reported. “While the bills are not guaranteed to pass in the Democrat-controlled House, Republicans say they intend to force their Democratic colleagues to publicly vote in favor of sanctions relief for Iran.”
“Rejoining the failed Iran deal means funding terrorists that will do us harm, period,” said Rep. Jim Banks, the RSC’s chairman, to the publication. “It also means lifting President Trump’s sanctions preventing China and Russia from selling arms to Iran. It’s not only a dangerous idea, but also against common sense.”
Banks said that Republican leaders must stand up for the Trump administration’s “successful maximum pressure campaign” against Iran.
The first bill, by Rep. Tony Gonzales, prohibits the presidential administration from renewing the nuclear deal until it can legally certify that it will not give sanctions relief or cash assets to any Iranian connected to terrorism. The bill also blocks sanctions relief to Iranian officials involved in human rights violations, including the state’s crackdown on pro-democracy activists.
The second bill, by Rep. Bryan Steil, prohibits the United States from granting licenses and waivers to any entity that is currently under sanctions for providing support to Iran’s terroristic endeavors. The Biden administration must be able to legally certify that Iran no longer supports terrorism in order to bypass the regulations. It will likely be unable to do so, due to Tehran’s support for Hamas, Hezbollah and other terrorist-designated groups.
The third bill, written by Rep. Don Bacon, will codify the Trump administration’s decision to sanction the sale of arms from China and Russia to Iran. It is intended to lock the sanctions in place and prevent Biden from lifting arms restrictions as part of any prospective agreement.
“A new deal would pave the way for the United Nations and European powers to further roll back a longstanding U.N. arms ban on Iran—which lapsed last year—but if Bacon’s legislation is passed, it would be nearly impossible for the United States to go along with such a scenario,” the Free Beacon reported.