Sen. Corker says Iran bill to overcome Obama veto

Sen. Corker says Iran bill to overcome Obama veto

HomeUSPolitics Sat Mar 21, 2015 5:4AM

US Senator Bob Corker says his legislation requiring congressional review of any nuclear deal with Iran will receive enough votes to override a veto from President Barack Obama.

“I believe ultimately we will have a veto-proof majority to make that happen,” Corker, Republican of Tennessee, said during a speech at the Republican National Lawyers Association’s 2015 National Policy Conference.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee had originally planned to mark up Corker’s bill next Thursday. However, Senate Democrats and Republicans agreed Thursday to delay the committee’s vote on the legislation until after Congress returns from its early-April recess.

The legislation, co-authored with Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), gives Congress 60 days to review any deal reached with Iran over its nuclear program, during which time President Obama is banned from waiving sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Sen. Bob Corker (L) and ranking member Sen. Bob Menendez listen to testimony during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Capitol Hill, March 11, 2015 in Washington, DC.

The bill would need a majority vote in the 19-member committee before it can move to the Senate for a full vote.

The White House opposes any bill passed before June 30 and reissued a veto threat on the Corker-Menendez legislation earlier this week.

“Passing this kind of legislation would interfere in the negotiations” between Iran and the P5+1 group – the US, France, Britain, China, Russia and Germany, said White House spokesman Josh Earnest.

Over the weekend, White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough sent Corker a letter asking him to hold back on his legislation.

The bill would “likely have a profoundly negative impact on the ongoing negotiations,” McDonough wrote in his letter, saying it would bring into question “our ability to negotiate this deal.”

A bipartisan group of 360 lawmakers in the House of Representatives signed a letter Thursday warning President Obama that any sanctions relief on Iran would require new legislation from Congress.

The missive followed a similar one signed by 47 Republican senators on March 9 telling Iran’s leaders that a nuclear deal might be revoked by the next US president.

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