Biden briefs Schumer on Iran

Vice President Biden briefed Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) on nuclear talks with Iran by phone Monday as the Obama administration is seeking to keep Congress from passing tougher sanctions. 

Schumer said during an event in New York on Monday he was “dubious” of the tentative deal that fell through between Iran and six world powers this past weekend, a Schumer spokesman said.

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Secretary of State John Kerry will also be briefing the Senate Banking Committee this week as it weighs whether to move forward with new sanctions measures.

The briefings are part of the Obama administration’s efforts to once again convince lawmakers not to move forward on tougher sanctions while the lawmakers are skeptical about the deal being negotiated with Iran.

Earlier this month, the Senate Banking committee held off from pursuing new sanctions legislation after a push from Biden, Kerry and the White House to allow them to pursue the negotiations.

The initial deal negotiated between Iran and the P5+1 group — the United States, France, Britain, Russia, China and Germany — would have eased sanctions for the halting of some of Iran’s nuclear activity.

French officials had said they had objected to the deal over Iran’s Arak heavy-water reactor, but Kerry said it was Iran who walked away.

“The French signed off on it; we signed off on it,” Kerry said Monday at a news conference in Abu Dhabi, according to reports. “There was unity, but Iran couldn’t take it.”

The next round of negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 group are set to begin on Nov. 20.

This post has been corrected from an earlier version.