And now there are 11.
Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-FL-10) announced Thursday, Aug. 13, that he opposes and will vote against the Nuclear Iran deal when it is placed before Congress in September.
The Florida Democrat also seeks to make it clear to Iran that should that nation cheat on the Agreement if it is implemented, the military option will not only be on the table, it will be poised for immediate use.
Hastings, currently serving his 12th term in Congress, is a senior member of the House Rules Committee and co-chair of the Florida congressional delegation. He raised the same troublesome details of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action that have been repeatedly criticized as unacceptable by many of his colleagues.
The acronym for those primary pitfalls, NASM24, may help to remember that the deal allows Iran to become a Nuclear threshold state; it lifts bans on conventional Arms and ICBMS in eight years or fewer; that the Snapback of sanctions will be cumbersome and time-consuming, if possible at all; that it funnels into Iran, the number one supporter of global terrorism, billions of dollars (Money); and it allows Iran up to 24 days before suspected but unconfirmed nuclear weapons sites can be inspected. These concerns were all raised by Hastings as the bases for his opposition to the JCPOA.
And if the Agreement is approved, over his and his colleagues’ objections, Hastings informed the public about two acts he has taken.
First, Hastings made it known that a month ago he sent a letter to U.S. President Barack Obama, urging him to appoint a “high-ranking military official” to oversee the implementation of the deal, should it be approved. He did this, Hastings explained, because “Iran needs to understand that our commitment to ensuring compliance with this deal would be unwavering.”
The second thing Hastings has done is to draft legislation which he will introduce on Sept. 8, “that authorizes the sitting president or his successors to use military force to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear weapons state.”
Hastings joins his Democratic colleagues in the House of Representatives who have announced they will vote against the JCPOA: Rep. Grace Meng (NY) Rep. Juan Vargas (CA), Rep. Albio Sires(NJ), Rep. Kathleen Rice (NY), Rep. Nita Lowey (NY), Rep. Steve Israel (NY), Rep. Ted Deutch (FL), Rep. Eliot Engel (NY), Rep. Brad Sherman, (CA) and Rep. David Scott (Georgia), who came out quietly but unequivocally against the deal in mid-July.