Biden hits back against GOP letter on Iran

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The recent letter by 47 Republican senators warning Iranian leaders that any nuclear deal struck without Congress won’t last is “beneath the dignity” of the Senate, Vice President Biden said on Monday night.

{mosads}Biden said in a statement that the correspondence is “expressly designed to undercut a sitting president in the midst of sensitive international negotiations.” Biden, a former chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, warns it could threaten the presidential power to negotiate treaties in the future.

“In thirty-six years in the United States Senate, I cannot recall another instance in which Senators wrote directly to advise another country — much less a longtime foreign adversary — that the President does not have the constitutional authority to reach a meaningful understanding with them,” Biden said.

He accused Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), only referred to as “the author of this letter,” of trying to sandbag the negotiations, which would leave the world without any options.

“If talks collapse because of Congressional intervention, the United States will be blamed, leaving us with the worst of all worlds. Iran’s nuclear program, currently frozen, would race forward again,” he said.

“We would lack the international unity necessary just to enforce existing sanctions, let alone put in place new ones. Without diplomacy or increased pressure, the need to resort to military force becomes much more likely — at a time when our forces are already engaged in the fight against ISIL [the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant].”

Cotton brushed aside that criticism in an interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Monday, and slammed Biden as “wrong about nearly every major foreign policy and national security decision in the last 40 years.”

“If Joe Biden so respects the dignity of the institution of the Senate, he should be insisting that the president submit any deal to approval of the Senate, which is exactly what he did on numerous deals during his time in the Senate,” Cotton said.

Tags Iran Joe Biden Tom Cotton

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