Anyone following the headlines from Washington’s semi-annual marathon “vote-a-rama” on the budget resolution might come away thinking that the Senate voted unanimously to re-impose sanctions on Iran. Here is a smattering of headlines with regard to the Kirk amendment on Iran, which passed the Senate 100-0 yesterday:
Reuters: “US Senate votes unanimously for amendment to send message on Iran”
Yahoo News: “US Senate threatens Iran with new sanctions”
The Hill: “Senators endorse Iran sanctions in budget vote”
In reality, last night’s vote has demonstrated to Iran that neither party is serious about standing up to their fomentation of terror and pursuit of nuclear weapons.
To begin with, any vote on an amendment to the budget resolution is non-binding because the budget resolutions are never signed by the president or become law. They merely serve as the blueprint from which Congress crafts the annual appropriations bills that are sent to the president’s desk. The purpose of these amendments is purely for messaging – to draw a sharp contrast with the opposing party.
Instead of putting Democrats in a rough spot and ratcheting up much needed pressure on so-called pro-Israel Democrats for their support of Obama’s dangerous Iran policy, Republicans let them off the hook and gave them an escape hatch.
Originally, the Kirk amendment would have re-imposed sanctions on Iran immediately following any violations of the agreement they accepted in return for negotiations in 2013. They could have easily passed this amendment with a simple majority and forced Democrats to choose between Obama and doing the right thing.
But Democrats begged them to change the language. Republicans obliged and rewrote the language to call for sanctions only “if the President cannot make a determination and certify that Iran is complying with” the agreement.
Talk about the fox guarding the hen house. Obama has sold out Israel and even his relationship with European and Arab countries in order to give Iran whatever it wants. He is now agreeing to allow Iran to maintain nuclear centrifuges in fortified bunkers! There is no way Obama will ever certify that Iran is not complying with the deal. That would be an anathema to his broader agenda.
Now Democrats get to send out press releases evincing a faux tough stance against Iran, while protecting Obama’s simultaneous war on Israel and embrace of Iran. It completely takes the pressure off of them to join meaningful efforts to rein in Obama’s dastardly foreign policy.
When will Republicans stop worshiping bipartisanship and stand on a morally clear position? (See “Senate Adopts Worthless Iran Sanctions Amendment”, originally posted HERE)