Ted Cruz Reveals Obama Using UN to ‘Circumvent’ Congress on Iran Deal
Sen. Ted Cruz accuses the White House of trying to skirt around a congressional review of the newly inked Iran nuclear pact — and threatens to cut off State Department funding and block nominees unless lawmakers get a first look before a final United Nations vote.
In a letter to President Barack Obama, the Texas Republican charges the White House has found a way to “circumvent” congressional review by going straight to the United Nations, where a vote could lift sanctions before Congress completes its oversight.
The deal signed in Vienna “assumes congressional consent of this agreement and fails to even mention the statutory review process that you signed into law on February 27, 2015,”
Cruz writes in the letter, first reported by The Washington Free Beacon.
Under the deal, sanctions imposed by the United States, European Union and United Nations would be lifted in return for Iran agreeing to long-term curbs on a nuclear program that the West has suspected was aimed at creating a nuclear bomb. But Cruz says no restrictions should be lifted before Congress has fully reviewed it, and that the February law gives lawmakers 60 days to do so.
As the agreement is written, “it seems your administration intended all along to circumvent this domestic review by moving the agreement to the U.N. Security Council before the mandatory 60-day review period ends, thus adopting an agreement without congressional consent,” Cruz writes.
“Under no circumstances should the Executive Branch take such action before the Congressional review process is complete,” Cruz writes. “Thus, I ask that you provide written assurances that you will take all necessary steps to block any UN Security Council resolution approving the [Iran deal] until the statutory timeline for congressional review has run its course.”
“Until you provide such assurances, I intend to block all nominees for the Department of State and hold any legislation that reauthorizes funds for the Department of State.”
Illinois Republican Sen. Mark Kirk also blasted any circumvention.
“The White House’s plan to preempt Congress’ 60-day review of the Iran deal by first seeking approval from the U.N. Security Council, whose members include at least six non-democracies, would be a breathtaking assault on American sovereignty and congressional prerogative,” he says in a statement, the Free Beacon reports.
One unnamed sources tells the Free Beacon any sidestepping of Congress would mean Obama “is de facto collaborating with an avowed enemy of the United States to leverage the undemocratic cesspool that is the United Nations against America’s lawmakers and the people who elected them.”