Republicans Blast Biden Administration For ‘Giving Away The Store’ To Iran In Sanctions Negotiations

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Michael Ginsberg Congressional Correspondent
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Republicans in the House of Representatives and the Senate are speaking out against the Biden administration’s negotiations with Iran following reports that it could waive terrorism sanctions as part of a nuclear weapons agreement.

Even without lifting the sanctions on terrorists themselves, a new nuclear agreement would likely fund Iranian terrorist activities. Iran used “some money” that was unfrozen as part of the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to fund terrorist activities, then-Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford testified to Congress in 2017.

An agreement to waive terrorism sanctions would go further than the JCPOA, which only lifted sanctions related to the country’s nuclear activity. Chief negotiator Rob Malley is reportedly prepared to waive such sanctions on several terrorist leaders as part of a new nuclear agreement, former Trump administration State Department official and longtime Senate aide Gabriel Noronha wrote Tuesday on Twitter.

Mohsen Rezaee, the former commander-in-chief of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) who was involved in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish cultural center in Argentina, would no longer be sanctioned as a result of the agreement if it moves forward, according to Noronha. Nor would IRGC Brigadier General and former Defense Minister Hossein Dehghan, who directed the Iran proxy Hezbollah to carry out the 1983 Beirut bombing that killed 241 American soldiers.

The State Department did not respond to the Daily Caller’s request for comment on this story.

Describing the report as “deeply troubling,” Republican Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher told the Daily Caller that Congress should vote on any future agreement with Iran. Gallagher recently submitted a letter, signed by 175 House Republicans, demanding a congressional vote on any agreement. The letter argues that any agreement should be constitutionally considered a treaty, subject to a two-thirds Senate vote.

“The President’s State of the Union Address demonstrated that he will have bipartisan support if he chooses stand up for freedom and strengthen U.S. national security. Entering into what appears to be a disastrous new agreement with Iran without involving Congress in the process would poison the well, violate the law, and hand Putin a massive win in the Middle East,” he said.

Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton, who was one of 33 senators to sign a similar letter, has objected to any negotiations. (RELATED: 44 Senate Republicans Demand Biden End Nuclear Talks With Iran Over Israel-Palestine Conflict)

“The Biden administration is giving away the store in Vienna, and the Iranians know it. President Biden’s deal will flood the regime in Tehran with billions in cash and clear a path to nuclear weapons—all for nothing,” he told the Daily Caller.

“There appear to be no limits to what Malley will offer Tehran to return to the failed nuclear deal,” Senate Armed Services Committee ranking member and Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe added, noting the January resignations of Deputy Special Envoy Richard Nephew and two other negotiators.

The Biden administration waived sanctions on Iran’s nuclear program in February that prohibited foreign countries from aiding Iran with its nuclear program. Iran claims that its nuclear program is for civilian use only, but enriches uranium to levels much higher than would be necessary to power homes and vehicles.