WH: Congress’ Role in Iran Deal to Vote on Sanctions Years From Now

Monday at the White House press briefing, press secretary Josh Earnest said when the administration is saying Congress has a role in the Iran nuclear negotiations, what they are talking about is their consultations with Congress through hundreds of “meetings, hearing and classified briefings and calls,” and not an official vote on the deal.

Earnest explained Congress should only weigh in with a vote “after Iran has demonstrated a commitment to complying with the agreement—not just over the course of days, not over the course of weeks, and not over the course of months, but over the longer term has demonstrated a willingness to comply with the agreement. Then Congress could take what would be the reasonable step of considering whether those sanctions should be removed.”

When questioned later to clarify if he really meant Congress should wait until “maybe even next year to vote on an agreement that is being negotiated right now,” Earnest said yes, but ongoing, Congress’ role is with “meetings, hearing, and classified briefings and calls.”

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