House Republicans Demand Access to Iran’s “Side Deals”

Congress has a 60-day window to review the nuclear agreement Obama made with Iran. But unless lawmakers have access to the full details of the deal, it is impossible for them to make a clear and coherent decision about its merits. The problem? According to a number of sources (though denied by Obama and Kerry), Tehran has worked out a side deal with international inspectors. This has GOP representatives concerned, and 94 House Republicans wrote to the administration this week demanding to see these side deals.

“As you yourself have made clear, the agreement is ‘not based on trust, but on verification’,” said the letter. “The issue of how we will verify that Iran is being truthful about its activities at potential nuclear sites will determine whether the [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] can ultimately succeed.”

Lawmakers believe that Iran has worked out at least two undisclosed agreements with the International Atomic Energy Agency, undermining Obama’s insistence that the deal is built on said inspections. Some reports claim that Tehran has secured itself a favorable inspection clause as it pertains to their Parchin military complex.

“Congress’s legal right to these documents,” wrote lawmakers, “creates a corresponding legal obligation for your administration to provide them for our review.”

On Deaf Ears

President Obama, of course, is desperate to make sure this deal goes through without a hitch. It is patently obvious that he resents being forced to show this deal to Congress at all. He has been running all over the place for the last couple of weeks, slandering the GOP to anyone who will listen. Accusing them of being on the same side of Iranian hardliners and driving us to war. Instead of simply addressing the truth of this deal, he wants to play an emotional game.

What’s pathetic is that he has no reason to play hardball with this deal. Unless Congress can convince a number of Democrats to switch sides, there’s nothing they can do to stop it from going through. Obama holds the power of the veto, and he’s already promised to use it. Strange how this president only finds strength when he’s up against Republicans. Foreign leaders? Terrorists? You’ll find him on the golf course. The GOP? Oh, then the claws come out.

It’s time for Obama to recognize that this deal goes beyond partisan politics. The American people, nay, the world deserves to know the consequences of a nuclear Iran. We deserve to know that this isn’t creating a path to the bomb. And without all of the relevant information, there’s no way to rule that out. Instead of casting aspersions at those who disagree with him, Obama should let the terms of this deal succeed or fail on their own merits.

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