Cantor Could Introduce Iran Legislation Before Recess

Aides said the goal is to get a resolution passed this week.

Rep. Eric Cantor (R-VA) listens as Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) (R) answers questions during a press availability at the U.S. Capitol June 12, 2013 in Washington, DC. Members of the House Republican leadership met with reporters following their weekly Republican Conference meeting.
National Journal
Jordain Carney
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Jordain Carney
Dec. 12, 2013, 3:11 a.m.

Con­gress could hold off on passing ad­di­tion­al sanc­tions against Ir­an un­til Janu­ary, aides told the As­so­ci­ated Press.

House Ma­jor­ity Lead­er Eric Can­tor, R-Va., might in­tro­duce a res­ol­u­tion on Thursday that out­lines what should be in a fi­nal agree­ment with Ir­an re­gard­ing its nuc­le­ar pro­gram. The hope is that House mem­bers would vote on the le­gis­la­tion in the short win­dow they have left to com­plete their work for the year.

The House is sched­uled to ad­journ Fri­day. It passed ad­di­tion­al sanc­tions against Ir­an earli­er this year, and Can­tor’s le­gis­la­tion would be non­bind­ing. Be­fore leav­ing town, House mem­bers still have to tackle the budget deal un­veiled on Tues­day and the Na­tion­al De­fense Au­thor­iz­a­tion Act.

In the Sen­ate, aides said that Ma­jor­ity Lead­er Harry Re­id has men­tioned hold­ing votes on ad­di­tion­al sanc­tions in Janu­ary. Re­pub­lic­an sen­at­ors and and some Demo­crats have called for ex­tra sanc­tions against Ir­an, des­pite a pub­lic push by the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion to get sen­at­ors to hold off out of a fear that con­gres­sion­al in­ter­fer­ence could un­ravel pro­gress be­ing made over Ir­an’s nuc­le­ar pro­gram.

Aides said Re­id was hop­ing to hold off on vot­ing be­fore the Sen­ate ad­journs next week to avoid in­ter­fer­ing with the de­fense au­thor­iz­a­tion bill. But Minor­ity Lead­er Mitch Mc­Con­nell could try to de­mand a vote on sanc­tions in ex­change for sup­port­ing a push to pass the de­fense au­thor­iz­a­tion passed this year. Sen. Lind­sey Gra­ham, R-S.C., has also threatened to vote against the bill un­less he gets as­sur­ances that a vote on sanc­tions will take place.

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