Senator: 'Walk away' from Iran talks

Senator: 'Walk away' from Iran talks
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Sen. Tom CottonThomas (Tom) Bryant CottonLawmakers introduce bill to block U.S. companies from doing business with Huawei Five things to know about Iran's breaches of the nuclear deal Hillicon Valley: Trump gets pushback after reversing course on Huawei | China installing surveillance apps on visitors' phones | Internet provider Cloudflare suffers outage | Consumer groups look to stop Facebook cryptocurrency MORE (R-Ark.) said Congress should "act immediately" on Iran sanctions after the State Department announced Tuesday it would need to extend for one day the talks on the framework of a nuclear agreement.

“The best solution is walk away from the nuclear negotiations now and return to a position of strength," said Cotton in a statement just before the Tuesday deadline passed.

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"We should reinstate existing sanctions suspended under the Joint Plan of Action, and Congress should act immediately to impose new sanctions. It’s time for the United States to regain the upper hand and quit negotiating out of weakness," he said, referring to a current interim deal. 

Cotton, who organized an open letter that Senate Republicans sent to Iran earlier this month, said the decision to extend the talks "in the face of Iranian intransigence and duplicity proves once again Iran is calling the shots."

"Given the dangerous concessions by the Obama administration over the past week, one can only imagine what further concessions it will make in the next 24 hours to resolve these issues," he said.

The deadline was March 31 to reach a framework political agreement with Iran aimed at preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon in exchange for sanctions relief.

However, there were still disagreements on key elements Tuesday, including the pace of sanctions relief and the scope of uranium enrichment, according to The Associated Press. 

“If we are making progress toward the finish line, then we should keep going,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Tuesday. 

He also warned that if there were no political agreement, the U.S. would be willing to walk away. 

“If we’re not able to reach a political agreement, we are not going to wait all the way until June 30 to walk away,” he added.