jh-siesta.com January 19, 2018

Senate Passes New Iran Sanctions Bill 98-2

20 June 2017, 12:54 | Ignacio Ramos

The bipartisan effort showcases that the Obama legacy on relations with Iran, and specifically the Iran deal (which is not rescinded in the Senate bill), have become deeply unpopular.

It's important to note that the measure hasn't been signed into law.

European allies, Germany and Austria, expressed concern for the impact the Russia sanctions could have on Russian natural gas supplies with Europe.

As far as the attempted Trump-proofing, the measure makes congressional review a requirement should Trump or any president want to reduce or end the penalties in the future.

That's a realistic threat, despite confidence from Israeli lobbyists that it would not, as the bill was largely an attempt to sneak sanctions the USA was obliged to lift from Iran as part of the nuclear deal back in as part of punishing Iran for "non-nuclear" actions, and those leading the charge were opponents of the P5+1 deal in the first place. It provides sanctions against suppliers of Russian arms to Syria. But the move played directly into the collusion narrative - a quid pro quo for Russian help in the campaign in exchange for a lifting of sanctions. House aides said they expected the chamber would begin to debate the measure in coming weeks. Lee ultimately voted for the final bill.

"This bill will impose sanctions on Iran for its non-nuclear violations", Cardin said.

Corker told reporters that "I only have talked a little bit with" Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who testified twice this week that the White House would prefer "flexibility" to adjust Russian Federation sanctions as needed. "I understand we take away some of their prerogatives, but in reality we give them a stronger hand that they can play with Russian Federation".

- Require a study on the flow of illicit finance involving Russia and a formal assessment of USA economic exposure to Russian state-owned entities.

The new bill would slap sanctions on companies in other countries looking to invest in those projects in the absence of US companies, a practice known as backfilling. "I have no idea" if the White House is adequately concerned about Russian intervention in last year's election, Corker added, but "hopefully the White House will acknowledge" the massive level of Senate support for new sanctions against Russia. "I would be very, very surprised if the president vetoes this bill". Putin seems content to sit back and watch as America tears itself apart with partisan witch hunts and hatred of the president.

The review mechanism was styled after 2015 legislation pushed by Republicans and approved overwhelmingly in the Senate that gave Congress a vote on whether President Barack Obama could lift sanctions against Iran. The vote was 98-2.

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