Schakowsky, Democratic congressmen urge Trump to recertify Iran deal


Daily file photo by Colin Boyle

U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) speaks at a 2016 event. She, along with more than 180 other congressmen, wrote a letter to President Trump urging him to recertify the Iran nuclear deal.

Jake Holland, Assistant City Editor

U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) joined more than 180 members of Congress in urging President Donald Trump in a Wednesday letter to recertify the Iran nuclear deal ahead of an upcoming Oct. 15 deadline.

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action was created in July 2015 and requires recertification every three months under the terms of the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act. The letter, initiated by U.S. Reps. David Price (D-N.C.) and Ted Deutch (D-Fla.), was written after recent suggestions that Trump would refuse to recertify the plan.

“Maintaining our commitment to the (plan) will allow us to continue our vigilant oversight of Iran’s nuclear ambitions,” Schakowsky said in a Wednesday statement. “Our national security and the security of our Middle Eastern allies depend on it.”

Trump has previously criticized the plan, saying it was one of the United States’ “worst and one-sided transactions” ever.

Many Democratic politicians, however, said the plan — which forced Iran to scale back its nuclear program in exchange for looser international sanctions — was necessary to ensure global non-proliferation efforts, among other things.

“Absent credible and accurate information confirming a material breach, we are concerned that withholding certification of Iran’s compliance or walking away from the (plan) would harm our alliances, embolden Iran, and threaten U.S. national security,” Wednesday’s letter read.

The letter also noted concerns about Iran’s ballistic missile development, support for proxies and terror groups, backing of the Assad regime in Syria and human rights violations.

Despite this, the congressmen said they “remain hopeful” that with strong U.S. leadership, they can ensure “vigorous enforcement” of the plan and its non-nuclear sanctions. They added that recertifying the plan would help “secure and safeguard” American interests.

“Some of us voted for, and some against, the nuclear agreement with Iran,” the letter said. “Nonetheless, we are united in our belief that enforcing this agreement to the fullest extent will provide the United States with more leverage to stop a potential Iranian nuclear weapons program and push back on Iran’s destabilizing activities.”

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @jakeholland97