EDITORIAL: Obama tries another end-run on Congress with Iran deal

Because the facts of this matter are so astounding, let’s make sure we have this straight.

President Barack Obama is attempting to deny Congress a voice on a possible deal being negotiated with Iran that has huge national security implications.

At the same time, the media is reporting Obama may submit such a deal to the United Nations Security Council for approval. The implications of this are simply staggering.

With “friends” like Russia and China on the Security Council, could the U.S. expect meaningful help down the road if Iran chose, for example, to deny inspectors access to their nuclear sites?

A bipartisan bill is pending in Congress, with 65 supporters, that would allow Congress to approve any pending deal. The administration has threatened to veto it if passed.

Quite clearly, this is part of a continuing pattern by this White House to try to govern by executive decree.

During the Cold War, presidents of both parties submitted nuclear arms control agreements to Congress for approval.

Admittedly there have been other accords the administration correctly points out where this didn’t happen.

One that comes to mind was a nuclear accord with North Korea over 15 years ago. We all know how well that turned out.

One point reportedly being negotiated with Iran is the lifting of economic sanctions imposed on that country. The fact Congress enacted the legislation imposing sanctions only strengthens the argument that they should have a voice in any agreement that lifts those sanctions.

Given Obama’s effort to bypass Congress, it should not surprise anyone that 47 Senate Republicans took the unprecedented step of sending a letter to Iran’s supreme leader pointing out the unstable foundation of any accord not reviewed by Congress.

Obama was quick to denounce their action, but the aforementioned bill now pending clearly demonstrates that unease over this deal and the administration’s track record in foreign affairs extends across party lines.

Given some of Obama’s debacles in foreign affairs, this is hardly surprising. We submit his dismissal of ISIS as junior varsity and the admission there was no strategy for combating ISIS.

In his January State of the Union, the president cited Yemen as one of our success stories.

Another case in point is Syria. Obama drew red lines warning the U.S. would take action if the Assad regime used chemical weapons.

After Syria repeatedly ignored these red lines, our commander in chief passed the ball off to Congress to decide whether to respond.

It’s rich that Obama passed this hot potato to Congress to deal with and can now argue with a straight face that the people’s representatives have no role to play in a nuclear agreement with a radical regime that not only hates us, but is a threat to our safety and to the safety of our allies in the Middle East.

Updated: 
04/01/2015 - 2:38pm

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