Republicans blast Obama's Iran deal

Republicans on Friday began slamming President Obama's proposal to loosen sanctions on Iran even as a deal remained elusive. 

U.S. and other negotiators are offering to unfreeze Iranian assets if the country agrees to temporarily halt its production of highly enriched uranium for a few months. Secretary of State John Kerry will remain in Geneva at least until Saturday and has canceled visits to Algeria and Morocco in the hope of striking a preliminary deal that could pave the way for a permanent solution to the standoff over Iran's nuclear program.

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House Majority Leader Eric CantorEric Ivan CantorRace for Republican Speaker rare chance to unify party for election Scalise allies upset over Ryan blindside on McCarthy endorsement 2018 will test the power of political nobodies MORE (R-Va.) said the deal under discussion in Geneva was “worse than no deal at all,” echoing earlier comments from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. 

“Any agreement that does not require the full and complete halting of the Iranian nuclear program is worse than no deal at all,” Cantor said.
”The interim agreement under consideration appears to abandon the repeated and binding demands of the International Atomic Energy Agency and UN Security Council for the full cessation of Iran's nuclear activities. All of Iran's enrichment activities, its heavy water reactor at Arak, and its history of weaponization research are of profound concern and should be addressed.”

Rep. Jason ChaffetzJason ChaffetzIngraham’s ratings spike a wake-up for advertisers Boehner to campaign for House GOP candidates Americans want to protect public lands, Congress should listen MORE (R-Utah), a top member on the House Oversight Committee, tweeted that reports of U.S. sanctions relief were “not good for the United States of America.” 

And Rep. Michele BachmannMichele Marie BachmannBachmann won't run for Franken's Senate seat because she did not hear a 'call from God' Billboard from ‘God’ tells Michele Bachmann not to run for Senate Pawlenty opts out of Senate run in Minnesota MORE (R-Minn.) tweeted that she agreed with Netanyahu and “unwaveringly stand with Israel. Iran nuclear deal is very bad and U.S. must reverse course.”

In the Senate, Foreign Relations panel member Jim RischJames (Jim) Elroy RischChanging the rules won't fix congressional dysfunction Senate approves .3 trillion spending bill, sending to Trump Overnight Health Care: FDA takes first step to cut nicotine levels in cigarettes | Trump's health chief backs official at center of abortion fight | Trump opioid plan will reportedly include death penalty for some drug dealers MORE (R-Idaho) called the loosening of sanctions a “colossal blunder.”

“I am deeply troubled that Secretary Kerry would rush to Geneva to enter into a deal with the Iranians, which by all accounts is temporary, incomplete, and a bad deal,” Risch said. “The idea of a temporary deal is a broken record we have listened to before.”

President Obama has called on Congress to delay new sanctions as he prods overtures from President Hassan Rouhani. Republicans have instead vowed to try to stymie any sanctions relief while cracking down even harder on Iran's energy sector.

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