Report: Obama to Use Executive Powers to Ease Iran Sanctions
In a a move that would surprise exactly no one, President Barack Obama is reported to be considering using his executive powers to relieve some sanctions on Iran, regardless of whether Congress passes new bipartisan sanctions currently under consideration that would take effect if the recent interim nuclear deal fails.
Adam Kredo of the Washington Free Beacon, citing congressional and other sources, reports: "Executive orders grant the president significant leverage in the how sanctions are implemented, meaning that Obama could choose to stop enforcing many of the laws on the books, according to government insiders."
The expectation is that the Obama administration will not only resist new sanctions, but will push back against congressional oversight of the Iran deal, which took effect Jan. 20 and trades some sanctions relief for temporary stalling of high-level uranium enrichment, among other minor and reversible concessions.
In December 2013, the administration took steps in the opposite direction, enforcing existing sanctions more tightly--not to punish Iran, but to prevent Congress from addressing Iran's nuclear program independent of the diplomatic process that the president and the State Department sought to pursue with the regime.