Friday, 7 August 2015

Top American Democrat Opposed To Iran Nuclear Deal


Barack Obama's hopes of keeping the nuclear deal between Iran and world powers on track have been dealt a setback after one of the top Democrats in the Senate said he would oppose the agreement. The opposition of Chuck Schumer could pave the way for more Democrats to come out against the nuclear pact announced last month between the US, five other world powers and Iran. The senator from New York is one of the most influential Jewish lawmakers in Congress, and the first Senate Democrat to announce he is against the deal. On Thursday another influential Jewish lawmaker, Representative Eliot Engel, the top Democrat on the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, said he would oppose the pact. Israel's Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has been pushing for congressmen and representatives to oppose the nuclear agreement, which he thinks is a threat to his country's survival.

A number of pro-Israel groups have spent millions of dollars on an advertising campaign to push members of Congress to vote no. Obama has engaged in his own lobbying effort, saying in a speech on Wednesday that abandoning the deal would open up the prospect of war. Lawmakers have until 17 September to consider a resolution of disapproval of the agreement, which would remove Mr Obama's ability to waive all sanctions on Iran imposed by Congress, a key part of the deal.

The White House had no immediate comment to make on Mr Schumer's announcement. Mr Schumer, who is the number three Democrat in the Senate and is in line to succeed Harry Reid as the party's leader in the chamber, has insisted his decision was not influenced by party or politics, and added he had not been pressured. He said: "Advocates on both sides have strong cases for their point of view that cannot simply be dismissed

Henry J Williams

Author & Editor

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