Congress Moves to Stop Iranian Sanctions Relief

Legislation would not allow Obama admin to release money until terror victims paid

By Adam Kredo, New Beacon

Congress is considering new legislation that would block the Obama administration from releasing billions of dollars to the Iranian regime as was agreed to under the parameters of the recent nuclear accord, according to Rep. Patrick Meehan (R., Pa.), the lawmaker spearheading the bill.

The bill, which is expected to be brought to the House floor for a vote this week, would require Iran to first pay $43.5 billion in legal penalties awarded by U.S. courts to American victims of Iranian terrorism.

President Obama would then be in a position to either disregard the requirement under his executive authority, thereby clearing the way for Iran to immediately receive $150 billion, or force Tehran to negotiate settlements for these terror victims.

The legislation, called the Justice for Victims of Iranian Terrorism Act, comes after a lawsuit filed by U.S. terror victims that argue they should first be paid damages before Iran sees a dime of the money promised by the Obama administration.

The victims said they fear that if the money is first released to Iran, they will never receive the billions in compensation awarded to them by U.S. courts.

Meehan told the Washington Free Beacon that the legislation would create a circumstance in which “the president must certify that he believes it’s more important to pay money to the Iranian terrorists than it is to compensate the victims of Iranian terror.”

The bill, he said, “would prevent the president from releasing any sanctions unless or until the full damages, which have already been awarded in American courts to victims of Iranian terror, are paid.”

“I’d just like to understand why [Obama] thinks it’s more important to give money back to Iran than it is to first pay the victims of their past terror acts,” said Meehan, who released a video late last week detailing the stories of several Americans harmed by Iranian-backed terrorism.

While the bill has garnered at least 75 co-sponsors in the House, Meehan said he is not certain whether supporters will be able to achieve a veto-proof majority.

“It’s possible it could be vetoed by the president,” Meehan said. “I don’t know how many legislators from either party are going to vote to give money to the Iranian terrorists before they give it to the victims.”

“That’s a decision each legislator is going to have to make,” Meehan said.

During the congressional battle over the Iran deal, Republicans and Democratic opponents failed to acquire a veto-proof majority. This paved the way for the White House to reject a vote of disapproval of the deal.

The looming issue of sanctions relief affords Congress an opportunity to ensure that U.S. victims of terror are paid what they are legally owed, Meehan said.

“Here we have a situation where the president, by virtue of the sanctions, has tied up a lot of Iranian assets, and if Iran wants access to those assets, the president is in a position to negotiate with them and say, ‘My Congress is demanding you pay these judgments before I release the funds,’” Meehan said. “That’s all we’re simply asking be done.”

“These victims have not had a voice through the courts system and it would be a travesty if that voice was silenced by releasing the full scope of the dollars back to the Iranians,” Meehan said.

Officials from the White House National Security Council did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

September 29, 2015 | 6 Comments »

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  1. I recognize that Rep. Meehan [along with Reps. Dent/Fitzpatrick] are not as conservative as I might desire

    Meehan campaigns as a conservative, then votes liberal 68% of the time. As with most Republican office holders, he is a cynical charlatan whose career consists of deceiving his voters with cynical gestures just as he is doing now.

  2. This time, it could be different.

    That is the refrain of every sucker ever born. You are the guy who has repeatedly lost his life savings buying the Brooklyn Bridge.

  3. I recognize that Rep. Meehan [along with Reps. Dent/Fitzpatrick] are not as conservative as I might desire; consider this to be a work-in-progress that, in many respects, animated much of what has been occurring under-the-radar.

  4. This time, it could be different. Reprinted below is the “Blast” e-mail that I just remitted to a buncha people that explains why:

    As anticipated, article #11 on this topic has been uploaded [Nuke the Iranian Nuke-Pact] as efforts continue to lobby D.C. [directly and indirectly]; the out-takes from that essay now comprise a 3K+ word essay that would probably have to be broken-up by a future editor.

    It should be noted that this was submitted to The American Thinker on Friday, tentatively Ok’ed on Saturday, edited on Sunday, uploaded on Monday, and revealed today; this expeditious process was greatly appreciated, because it permitted a “shorthand” presentation when cold-calling legislators.

    An excerpt from what’s still in the word-processor may prompt recipients [~500 on facebook and ~500 via manual “Blast” e-mail] to reinforce this effort; please provide feedback as to when responsiveness is detected.

    On September 28, Rep. Peter Roskam (R-IL) said he will propose that the House Republican Conference act more robustly against President Obama specifically regarding the Iran deal, during a closed-door meeting he secured to plot the House-GOP’s future scheduled for September 29 (view @ 3:00). He suggested he would want to file litigation to block its implementation.

    He had successfully forced House leadership to change its agenda on September 10 to hold the successful vote to charge Obama with skirting congressional review of the Iran pact [formally, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)]. Officially recognized is the fact that the Obama administration has not fulfilled the explicit reporting requirements of the Corker-Cardin Act [formally, the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act (INARA)], enacted in May.

    It seems he feels that such an initiative would please Republicans who are dissatisfied with do-nothing leadership that is not channeling their angst with more than a half-decade watching enactment of an ideological agenda led by the Democrat Party. The Hill speculated, “That return to the spotlight for the former chief deputy whip, who helped to turn the conservative House Freedom Caucus’s objections into House action, sparked questions about whether he’s interested in another leadership bid.”

    When contacting decision-makers, it may be desirable to inject specificity into the conversation; in this regard, consider disseminating the following additional excerpt from a potential future-article.

    Key legislative vehicles provide the foundation for litigation, including Rep. Louie Gohmert’s (R-TX) resolution H.Res.410 recognizing the pact as a treaty and Sen. Ron Johnson’s (R-WI), S.Res.251 resolution also recognizing the lack of compliance with the INARA act. Both can be amplified by reference to faulty informed consent regarding conventional arms.

    When the pact doesn’t survive senatorial advise/consent, it is hoped that Obama won’t go rogue, as was twice threatened, when the White House claimed “We don’t need Congress to approve” the Iran pact and Kerry did not instinctively say he would “follow the law” governing existing congressional sanctions were Congress to vote to override a veto. Instead, Kerry said, ominously, “I can’t begin to answer that at this point without consulting with the President and determining what the circumstances are.”

    Again, it is recognized that journalistic-orthodoxy is being violated when inserting these ideas into this sort of notification, but time-is-tight; it is not unreasonable to anticipate that this topic will be raised @ 5 p.m. tonight by the House GOP and, thus, the coda of the saved-piece may be worth quoting.

    On September 28, Rush Limbaugh observed that people and entities that are not consistently conservative are at-risk to become overly liberal, a phenomenon that a friend (David Sommers) ascribed to a D.C. version of the Stockholm Syndrome. This explains why the good intentions of newly-elected members of congress tend to erode following election, and it reinforces the need to place President Obama’s failed foreign policy into a form of robust “receivership” in a fashion that Rep. Kevin McCarthy has oratorically advised.

    Congressional representatives—particularly House conservatives—must vet potential Speaker candidates by ensuring the elected leader can demonstrate sufficient backbone to sue a runaway president noting, for example, that Tea Party Patriots included this specific criterion among those that any candidate must satisfy (as announced during its weekly conference call held on September 28). It is not overly dramatic to conclude that nothing short of seeking an injunction against Obama could stop him from undermining Western Civilization.

    The above citations were approved for dissemination, respectively, by David (Sunday-p.m., during a wide-ranging chat) and by the TPP-leadership (during the weekly national conference-call, during which I spoke); also acknowledged are overnight reviewing-efforts of Ms. Gail Kaplan (who kept editing-out my hyphenation-tendency).

  5. Boehner and McConnnell are fully funding the Obama agenda. This latest deception is merely designed to manipulate those who are so gullible that they fall for exactly the same con job no matter how many times it is dangled before them. Fortunately, many Republican voters have belatedly realized that all these beautiful gestures are invariably a prelude to total capitulation.

    Here it is in a nutshell: The Repug leadership is on record as saying they will never allow the government to be shut down, so Obama will prevail on every issue simply by threatening to shut down the government. It does not matter whether it is the appeasement of Iran or the funding of Planned Parenthood. The GOP has deliberately made itself irrelevant to the process of governing through preemptive legislative surrender.

    We have seen this plot line before, and the denouement is invariably the same. Boehner and McConnell will cave because they always cave, especially on an issue where the GOP’s Big Business benefactors desperately want to get their greedy/unpatriotic hands on $150 billion.

    And Patrick Meehan is a fraud: