Former senators urge Iran vote with explosive ad

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A bipartisan trio of former senators has banded together to run an aggressive TV ad urging Congress to pass a bill that would allow lawmakers to review any deal that international negotiators reach with Iran to prevent it from obtaining a nuclear weapon. 

Former Sens. Saxby ChamblissClarence (Saxby) Saxby ChamblissLobbying world GOP lobbyist tapped for White House legislative affairs The Hill's Morning Report - Gillibrand drops out as number of debaters shrinks MORE (R-Ga.), Evan Bayh (D-Ind.), and Norm Coleman (R-Minn.) have created a new 501(c)(4) called the American Security Initiative, which last week began running an ad showing a white van, ostensibly packed with a nuclear bomb, driving towards New York.  

The driver of the van is listening to the radio, where a soundbite from Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamSupreme Court fight should drive Democrats and help Biden Graham to meet with Trump's Supreme Court pick on Tuesday Democratic super PAC launches .5M ad campaign against Graham MORE (R-S.C.) is heard saying, "We got a North Korea in the making, one day you're going to wake up with an Iranian nuclear weapon." 

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As the van continues driving into New York, the radio also plays a snippet of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's speech to Congress a week ago, in which he says, "Just imagine the horrific results if the Islamic extremists who rule Iran get their hands on nuclear weapons." 

A voiceover is heard, warning the public to "Tell Washington, no Iran nuclear deal without congressional approval, before it's too late." 

The screen flashes numbers to the White House and the Capitol, before the van — now on the roof of a parking lot — explodes. 

Progressives slammed the ad online, calling it "war mongering." According to IJReview, major news networks refused to run the ad during their Sunday morning shows, with the execption of Fox News. 

 

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But the ad, which reportedly cost $500,000, is only the latest volley in Congress's fight to weigh in on any Iran nuclear deal reached by the Obama administration. 

Last week, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump, GOP aim to complete reshaping of federal judiciary Supreme Court fight should drive Democrats and help Biden Harris on SCOTUS fight: Ginsburg's legacy 'at stake' MORE (R-Ky.) backed off on a decision to hold a Tuesday vote on a bill that would delay the implementation of any deal for 60 days and give Congress time to review and vote on it, after Democrats said they would withhold their support before March 24. 

That's the deadline by which international negotiators have said they will reach a framework agreement. (The administration has calculated that deadline to be March 31). 

The bill, introduced by Sens. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerHas Congress captured Russia policy? Tennessee primary battle turns nasty for Republicans Cheney clashes with Trump MORE (R-Tenn.) and Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezWatchdog confirms State Dept. canceled award for journalist who criticized Trump Kasie Hunt to host lead-in show for MSNBC's 'Morning Joe' Senators ask for removal of tariffs on EU food, wine, spirits: report MORE (D-N.J.), would also prevent the deal from being implemented if Congress decides to vote on and disapproves of the bill.