IRAN NUCLEAR AGREEMENT REVIEW ACT; Congressional Record Vol. 161, No. 64
(Senate - April 30, 2015)

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[Pages S2544-S2545]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []


  Mr. McCONNELL. Mr. President, the Senate will soon resume 
consideration of the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act. I expect we 
will consider several amendments today, and I continue to encourage 
Senators to come to the floor and offer them.
  The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act is bipartisan legislation that 
will ensure that Congress and the American people have a chance to 
review any comprehensive agreement reached with Iran, and it ensures 
they will be able to do so before congressional sanctions are lifted.
  Here is why that is critical. First, these sanctions are a big reason 
why America was able even to bring Iran to the table in the first 
place. We shouldn't be giving up that leverage now without the American 
people, through the Members of Congress they elect, having a chance to 
weigh in. Quite simply, the American people expect us to have an 
opportunity to evaluate this agreement or not.
  Second, Iran wouldn't just use the funds derived from sanctions 
relief to rebuild its economy. It is certain to use that money to fund 
proxy forces such as Hezbollah and to prop up the Assad regime. What is 
clear is that Iran is determined to use every tool--to use every tool--
at its disposal to expand

[[Page S2545]]

aggressively its sphere of influence across the greater Middle East.
  The regime's belligerent behavior in the Strait of Hormuz was just 
another reminder of that fact. But it reminds us of something else, 
too--our need to invest in the naval and seaborne expeditionary 
capabilities in the Persian Gulf, which will be necessary not just to 
retain dominance at sea but to contain Iran's military and irregular 
forces, as well.
  Today, though--today--we are focused on one point above all else--
that the American people and Congress deserve a say before any 
congressional sanctions are lifted. At the very least, sanctions should 
not be lifted before the Iranians fully disclose all aspects of 
research and development as it relates to the potential military 
dimensions of their nuclear program. Yet the interim agreement, as it 
has been explained to Congress, would bestow international recognition 
to Iran's research and development program, along with an international 
blessing for Iran to become a nuclear threshold state poised at the 
edge of developing a nuclear weapon. It is frightening to think what 
Iran might be able to achieve covertly in that context.
  Now, to a lot of Americans this all sounds quite different from what 
they were led to believe a deal with Iran would actually be about--
preventing Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons and dismantling Iran's 
enrichment capability. But that apparently has already been given away. 
So the American people deserve a say through their Members of Congress. 
The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act will ensure Congress gets a vote 
either to approve or disapprove of the comprehensive agreement.
  Just as President Obama's successor will need to modernize our 
military to deal with the challenges posed by Iran's aggression, so 
will the President's successor want to consider Congress's view of any 
comprehensive deal. A failed resolution of approval, as the bill before 
us would permit, would send an unmistakable signal about congressional 
opposition to lifting sanctions. Let me say that again. A failed 
resolution of approval, permitted under this bill, would send an 
unmistakable signal about congressional opposition to lifting 
  So now is the time for Congress to invest in the capabilities 
President Obama's successor may need to use to end Iran's nuclear 
weapons program if the Iranians covertly pursue a weapon or violate the 
terms of the ultimate agreement. And now is the time for Congress to 
pass the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act.