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October 13, 2015 / 30 Tishri, 5776
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Posts Tagged ‘Peter Roskam’

Lawmakers Opposed to Iran Deal Introduce Measures Addressing its Flaws

Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) and Rep. Peter Roskam (R-IL) have finally done what so many opponents of the Nuclear Iran Deal have been waiting for. Whether their efforts will achieve the goal of opponents will soon be revealed.

The two Republican House members each introduced legislation late on Tuesday, Sept. 8, addressing procedural flaws in the administration’s conduct of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

Gohmert introduced a resolution that recategorizes the JCPOA as a treaty (and presidents have no veto power over Senate votes on treaties) and Roskam introduced a resolution which rewinds the clock on Congressional review of the JCPOA because the administration has not provided Congress with all the relevant, required documents relating to the agreement.

Gohmert introduced into the Rules Committee a Resolution declaring the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action a treaty. The effect of such a move is that rather than two-thirds of the Senate having to oppose the JCPOA, which is the case under Corker-Cardin (the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act), if the JCPOA is classified as a treaty it means that two-thirds of the Senate is required to approve the measure.

As Gohmert explained to the members of the House Rules Committee late on Tuesday, a treaty is “any agreement between the U.S. and another country that affects, changes or modifies an existing treat is a treaty.” Because the JCPOA affects, changes and modifies the Treaty on Nonproliferation of Nuclear Weapons, Q.E.D., it is a treaty.

Corker-Cardin explicitly provided that the agreement that the U.S. and its partners was going to enter into with Iran would not lift the embargo on the supply of ballistic missiles to Iran and that the act was only to apply to sanctions against Iran’s nuclear program.

As later became public, the Nuclear Iran Deal includes all kinds of relief for Iran which are totally unrelated to Iran’s nuclear program, such as lifting embargoes on conventional weapons  and ICBMs.

In addition, the two “secret side deals” between the International Atomic Energy Agency and Iran only became public well after the JCPOA was announced, and the INARA explicitly requires all the material dealing with the JCPOA be provided to Congress by the administration by Sept. 7.

All of this means, as explained in Gohmert’s Resolution, that Corker-Cardin cannot be the oversight mechanism for the JCPOA, given the many fundamental differences between what Corker-Cardin was written to cover and the many dramatically different aspects of the JCPOA which have since been revealed.

Gohmert’s Resolution also reveals that Secretary of State John Kerry’s explanation for why the JCPOA could not be considered a treaty was a farce. Kerry undermined his own explanation – that no treaties could be ratified by the Senate – by announcing the ratification of treaties by the Senate within days of making that statement.

The Resolution calls for the Senate to deliberate on the ratification of the Nuclear Iran Deal within 30 days of the passage of the Resolution.

Roskam’s effort states that under the INARA, the administration is required to provide to Congress all of the substantive material detailing the agreement, including the so-called “secret side deals.”

The administration has not provided Congress with that material, so the 60-day congressional review period has not begun to run, and won’t begin until all such materials are provided to Congress. And, of course, no vote on the JCPOA can take place until it does.

A hearing on Gohmert’s Resolution, H.J. Res. 64., will take place in the House on Wednesday, Sept. 9, beginning at 10:00 a.m. ET.

US Promises to Protect Israel if Iran Attacks

Tuesday, August 4th, 2015

An Obama administration official told Israeli diplomatic journalists Monday that the United States will protect Israel if Iran attacks it.

He also promised that the United States will not sell the F-35 advanced warplane to any other Middle East country besides Israel.

The briefing served the Obama administration’s current priority to make sure that Congress does not reject the nuclear deal with Iran by a veto-proof majority. President Barack Obama has no chance of winning majority support in the Senate, and Illinois Republican Rep. Peter Roskam declared on Monday that a majority of House members have pledged to back a resolution of disapproval of the nuclear deal

In the briefing with Israeli journalists, a defense official said that the government’s commitment to Israel’s security is “something US defense officials live on a daily basis.”

He also asserted that Iran’s continued declaration to annihilate Israel “doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t sign a deal that decreases the likelihood they will be a nuclear state.”

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has argued that ObamaDeal actually paves the way for Iran to obtain a nuclear weapon. If that is the case, the Obama administration in effect is creating an existential threat to Israel and then proposing a solution that makes Israel dependent on Washington.

Similarly, the promise not to sell F-35 warplanes to other countries n the region, most notably Egypt and Saudi Arabia which have expressed interest in buying the plane, eventually could be used as a tool to force concession from Israel. For example, President Barack Obama, or his successor, could warn Israel that if does not surrender to the Palestinian Authority, Washington will sell the F-35 to Egypt.


Congressmembers: No More Money for Talks With Iran

Friday, March 27th, 2015

Some members of Congress are insisting there be a limit to the ongoing negotiations to convince the Islamic Republic to agree not to produce nuclear weapons.

In a letter sent on Thursday, March 26, to the Chair and the Ranking member of the subcommittee on Foreign Operations of the House Appropriations Committee, several members of Congress, spearheaded by Peter Roskam (R-IL) and Lee Zeldin (R-NY), sought the insertion of language in the upcoming foreign operations appropriations bill that would prohibit the inclusion of funding for continuing talks with Iran by the U.S. with the P5+1 member nations.

The letter, addressed to Cong. Kay Granger (R-TX) and Cong. Nita Lowey (D-NY), described the ongoing negotiations with Iran as “dangerous” and a “failed effort” to “ensure Iran never acquires a nuclear weapons capability.”

The letter pointed out that, despite assurances to the contrary, the administration has already made dangerous concessions to Iran, including the decision to permit Iran to maintain a “peaceful nuclear enrichment program.”

As pointed out in the Congressional letter, “there is no such thing as a peaceful Iranian nuclear enrichment program.”

In addition, the March 26 letter recounts the highlights (or, rather, low points) of what is understood to be included in a final deal, which would permit Iran to maintain its current stockpile unmolested now, and then the complete lifting of any restraints on Iran in ten years time.

A House staffer who spoke about the current status of the negotiations with the JewishPress.com was piqued by the administration’s refusal to share details of the deal with members of Congress. The language the administration has employed is particularly irksome. Saying that Congress will “see the agreement” once it is completed is hardly reassuring to those with grave concerns about what it contains.

The staffer explained that while this request to Appropriations, even if implemented, would not kick in for another 19 months, it is significant because Congress needs to continue demanding “it has a role to play,” and this is one way of alerting both the administration and the public that Congress has not yet been heard on this critically important topic. Congress has, essentially, “been left in the dark.”


The Congressional letter was sent the same day that an absolute blockbuster scoop from the Associated Press revealed yet another dangerous concession allegedly made by the U.S. to Iran: that Washington is poised to allow the Iranians to continue enrichment activities at its Fordow facility. This is the one that is an underground military bunker. Fordow is built into the side of a mountain and is all but impervious to an air attack.

Really? Spinning centrifuges in a bunkered facility? Any members of Congress who are not standing up on their hind legs and demanding the right to review and make changes to a final deal with Iran on what is perhaps the most important treaty of modern times deserves to lose their seat.


And there are some New Yorkers who will be sharing that view with their U.S. Senators, Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, tomorrow, March 27, at noon.

There will be a rally in front of the senators’ offices, at 780 Third Avenue between East 48th and 49th Streets in Manhattan. The purpose of the rally is to press the senators to commit to overriding President Obama’s promised veto of the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015, better known as the Corker-Menendez Bill.

Neither Schumer nor Gillibrand have stated publicly how they will vote on an override of the president’s promised veto of INARA. Concerned constituents want the senators to be counted among those elected representatives who will demand Congress plays a role in ensuring that any deal with Iran will not allow it to acquire nuclear weapons.

US Congressman Gets it Right on Gaza v. Israel

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

Responding to a letter from a constituent, U.S. Congressman Peter Roskam (R-IL-06) sent out a video to his constituents explaining what the U.S. is doing to protect Israel from Gaza’s rocket attacks.

Roskam is the co-chair of the House Republican Israel Caucus and is active in helping to secure funding for Israel’s defense needs from the U.S., including the Iron Dome Missile Defense system, David’s Sling and the Arrow missile defense systems.

This past spring, Roskam and Democratic Congresswoman Grace Meng (NY-06) sought a near doubling in appropriation levels over those requested by the administration for the Iron Dome system. They requested $350.9 million for Iron Dome, which was $175.9 million more than was allocated in the president’s budget, and $268.7 million for the Arrow, Arrow 3 and David’s Sling systems, which was $172.1 million more than the administration requested.

In the video, Roskam refers to Hamas as the “Iran backed terrorist regime,” and explained to his constituents that Israel accepted the Egyptian-brokered ceasefire, while Hamas rejected it, instead choosing more violence.


Congress Members Blast ASA for Boycott Decision

Sunday, January 19th, 2014

A bipartisan slate of 134 U.S. Congress members wrote a letter to the American Studies Association protesting its decision last month to boycott Israeli universities.

“Academic cooperation can be an important tool to help foster peace between Israelis and Palestinians, but you have chosen the unproductive path of isolation,” said the letter dated Friday, initiated by Reps. Pete Roskam (R-Ill.), the chief deputy whip of the U.S. House of Representatives and Ted Deutch (D-Fla.), the senior Democrat on the House Middle East subcommittee. “We hope that the ASA will learn to appreciate the mutually beneficial academic ties between the United States and Israel and work with us to promote peace and academic freedom.”

The ASA, with a membership numbering less than 5,000, was the largest of three academic organizations to recommend boycotts against Israeli institutions last year, a breakthrough in the United States for the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign.

The move has been repudiated by close to 200 U.S. universities and the larger academic groups, such as the American Association of University Professors, have pushed back such attempts.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/congress-members-blast-asa-for-boycott-decision/2014/01/19/

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