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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  September 11, 2015 8:00am-10:01am EDT

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with a design that will not produce weapons grade plutonium. and to forgo the processing spent fuel which is essential to the plutonium path. and agree to blocks the covert path by extensive inspections and monitoring. this includes on site inspections anywhere a violation is expected. .. days for access and to ensure we can detect any rate yes active materials. the result attested to by nonproliferation experts is it is very likely that any future effort by iran to pursue nuclear weapons even in a clandestine program would be detected promptly. but as many pointed out the agreement is not without shortcomings. it is not sustained the current u.n. ban on conventional
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articles. it can meet missile technology after ten years. it does not detect how it and third, it does not it permanently maintain bright lines in iran's nuclear research or nuclear energy program, lifting 300-kilogram stockpile limit and 3.67% enrichment limit after 15 years. these exclusions are troubling. it is possible, perhaps probable that iran will use some additional cash and access to conventional arms to increase supports for terrorist groups. it is possible that iran will w use research nuclear program and research energy program to provide foundation for future nuclear weapons program that is a substantial concern and for this reason many come to the floor to argue the united states instead of implementing this agreement should withdraw from it and negotiate a better deal. the prospects for that possibility however are slim.our
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our p5-plus-one partners and is have met with all of their ambassadors to explore this issue have committed the good faith of their governments behind this agreement. they believe that this is the best path, the best opportunity to stop iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon and they plan tor honor deal they signed on to with or without the united states as long as iran does as well. and if iran has every reason to honor this agreement, even if the u.s. rejects it, because tht agreement fulfills iran's goal of lifts international sanctions and sets stage for valuable trade an investment partnerships. if iran were to follow this course it would gain many benefits while leaving united states at odds with the balanceo of our partners undermining in dramatic and international fashion american influence with strategic and security consequences throughout a largee spectrum. on the otherum hand, if iran exs the agreement and in response to the rejection by the united states our t country is the one that stands in the pathway after
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potential diplomatic solution to this incredibly important international security issue. it would be the u.s. blocking a plan with confidence of stopping iran from acquiring a bomb and m nuclear bomb and furthermore the in-- international support for economic sanctions would fray giving iran economic relieve without intrusive inspections. in short this course would boeings shatter diplomacy, impact and diminish americanders leadership and sled our economic leverage, increasing reliance on one leftover tool, military options or the at the same time dramatically diminishing our confidence in the actual state m of iran's nuclear program. that, less information and more reliance on less confidence, would be a dangerousinat combination. the most effective strategy forr
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blocking iran's access to nuclear bomb is to utilize this agreement to maximize americanad participation to hold iran's strictly accountable not through the first 15 years but through the next decades that followollo where iran is still completely constrained by its commitment tt never develop a nuclear weapon. after 15 years, iran will be subject to the deal's requirements that it will never quote, seek, develop, or acquire any nuclear weapons. and iran will be continue to be a subject to on going intensive monitoring verification by the international atomic energy agency or iaea but we, the s united states, can greatly strengthen this framework. the u.s. should use massive intelligence program to back up the plan in the first 15 years and strengthen the iaea the monitoring after the first 15 years. u.s. should lead the use
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international community inhe defining boundary that constitutes difference between nuclear, a nuclear research program and a nuclear energy program versus a nuclear weapons program because those bright lines that diminished replaced with commitments that has to be defined. through participation in the agreement the united states can assure the international community sustains a clear line and enforces. >> the senator's time has expired. >> in conclusion i ask unanimous consent for 30 more second. >> without objection. >> no foreign policy choice comes with guaranties. the future whether we approve or reject this deal is unknowable and carries risk but this agreement, what this verification, with full u.s. participation, and offers the best prospect stopping iran froc acquiring a nuclear weapon at any point here forward and forht that reason i will support it. thank you, mr. president. >> mr. president. >> senator from west virginia. >> mr. president, when i go home to my beautiful state of west virginia i have always said
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if i can't explain it i can't vote for it. when this process began i was supportive of the diplomatic efforts led by secretary kerry and moniz i always believed to be truly a superpower you must engage in super diplomacy. whenever i'm able i will choose diplomacy over war because these stakes are so high for west virginia and our entire country which in our state of west virginia we have one s highest rates military service in the nation participationwise but as i struggle with this decision i can not ignore the fact that ran, the country that will benefit most from the sanctions lifted refuses to-yea change 36-year history ofl sponsoring terrorism. for me this deal had to be more about preventing iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon for the next 10 or 15 years. terrorist actions. without doing so it would reward iran's 36 years of deplorable behavior and do nothing to stop
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its die instructive activities. in fact during the negotiating process we saw unfold it continued to hold four american hostages, support terrorism around the world, breed anti-american sentiment and acquire arms from russia. the continued actions by iranand and recent activities with russia have proven to me when we catch iran violating the agreement and i believe we will, mr. president, i have grave doubts we will have unified committed partners willing to prevent iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. i also can not in food conscience agree iran receiving everyone knows will be used at least some part to continue funding terrorism and further to destablize the middle east. lifting sanctions without insuring that iran's sponsorship of terrorism is neutralized is dangerous to regional andio american security. the administration has accepted what i consider to be a false choice. that had is only about nuclear weapons and not terrorism.nucl however the fact of the matter is that we are concerned about
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iran having a bomb because in large part it is the world's largest state sponsor of terrorg asking us to set aside the terrorist question is irresponsible and misses the point. over the past, in the last 36 years iran has carried outsa thousand of acts of terror that have killedha thousands of middle east but around the world. defied international sanctions and treaties continue to call for and attempt to violently destroy the state of israel,nd bomb diplomatic buildings and murdered innocent civilians. all on top much it all iran isible directly responsible for the deck off hundreds of u.s. soldiers this regime has shownwn no signs its deplorable behave the deal does nothing to while the deal places real constraint on iran as nuclear program for the next 10 to 15 years, after that term, mr. president, iran will be able to produce enough enriched-uranium for nuclear i weapon in very short period of
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time. while i hope its behavior willut change this span i can not allies that iran will conduct themselves differently than it has for the past 36 years. t because of that belief and month of thoughtful consideration i must cast a vote against this deal.elie i do not believe supporting this deal will prevent from eventually acquiring nuclear weapon or continue to be a leading sponsor of terrorism bense americans and our allies around the world. to those who were upset by my deliberations i will simply say the decision to pursue diplomacy is every bit as consequencal asn the decision to pursue war. many cases possibly even this aa one the choice to abandon the first path leads inevitably to the second and i like most americans and west virginians have already seen too much american sacrifice in the path towards war however i don't believe a vote against this deal forces us to abandon thewe m
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diplomatic path. we must continue to pursue peace but on terms that promise a for lastings peace for the united states and our allies. i met with and spoke to every national security expert i could. i attended every secured briefing that was made available to them. i spoke with representatives ofr every middle east earn country and most importantly, i listened to the good citizens of west virginia. i thank all of my constituents who reached out to my office and many advisors who took their time to help me reach thisy h decision. mr. president i will continue to listen to my constituents and i will support a path towards peace and diplomacy over war and aggression but make no mistake about it, i will vote to use all of our military might to protece our homeland whenever it is threatened, defend our allies whenever put in harm's way and prevent iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. i believe to be a superpower yop must possess super diplomatic skills. i believe we can use the skillsr to negotiate a better deal.eed
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we need a deal that citizens ofs west virginia, our country and the world know will make us safer, mr. president. for that i yield. >> mr. president. >> ther: senator from indiana. >> thank you, mr. president. as indiana senator my top priority and most fundamentaltya responsibility is to insure the security of the people of indiana and our nation. as well as the security of our friends and allies including israel and the gulf states. through the lens of these solemn obligations that i have carefully reviewed and evaluated the proposed nuclear agreement. in making this decision, i bring to bear not only myy responsiblities a the united states senator, but as the ranking member of the armedmmit services subcommittee on strategic forces. overseeing our nation's own nuclear arsenal and global non-proliferation efforts.vict my convictions as a strongter supporter of israel and mysier
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concerns as a hoosier, who has attended the funerals of too many m young men and women lost protecting our nation in this conflict-ridden region. after an exhaustive assessmenthg and careful thought, it d determined that despite my questions about iran's intentions, the most responsible coursen of action is to give ths agreement the opportunity to succeed. it is not the agreement i would have written but it is the one we have to make a decision on.ib and i believe the alternative is much more dangerous to our to country, and to israel. while reasonable people can disagree on the substance of the agreement we can all agree that a nuclear-armed iran poses an unacceptable threat to global security and the iranian leadership should not and can not be trusted. the question then becomes, how can we most effectively eliminate iran's nuclear threat?
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this agreement rolls back iran'u nuclear capabilities, shrinkss its program, and gives usss unprecedented access with the most intrusive inspections and verification regime ever put into iran must get rid of 98% of their stockpiled uranium. more than 2/3 of their centrifuges and the existing core of their heavy water plutonium reactor. these measuresy not only give us the opportunity to restrain iran's nuclear capabilities but also, according to our militaryp leadership, improve the effectiveness of our military option should that one day become necessary. without this agreement, we risk the, we have the risk of the worst of both worlds.k the united front we formed with the international communitye f against iran's nuclear program would break the agreement would dissolve,gre sanctions relief flows into iran from those countries that are no longer willing to hold the line
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and iran is left with tens of of thousands of centrifuges capable of producing highly-enriched uranium, a heavy water reactor capable of producing weapons-grade plutonium and a breakout time of just two to three months. while i support this agreement i also recognize the only true guarranty that iran will never become a nuclear-armed state is the steadfast resolve of the united states and our allies. to do whatever it is necessary d to step them and to put in place the policies to make that happen. withwi or without this deal the day may come when we are left with no alternative but to take military action to prevent irang from crossing the nuclear threshold. the burden and danger would as our servicemembers who put theie lives on the line for our country.n's
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indiana's home to the nation's fourth largest national guard contingent with more than 14,000 hoosiers ready to stand to serve countries. these men and women and thousands of hoosiers who serve in the reserves and and on active duty across the country and around the world have been called to serve time and timeth again. they have done so with honor any distinction. they make up the greatest for fighting force the world has ever seen and i have every confidence in their ability to meet any challenge put before them. if the day does come that i amay faced with a vote on whether to authorize military actione against iran, i owe it to our armed forces and to the people of indiana to have tried all othero options to stop iran before we consider putting ourno servicemembers into harm's way. we stand ready to take militaryf action if needed, but we owe it to the young men and women who protect our country on the front
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lines from terra haute, and angola, evansville and indianapolis, to at least try tf findin a peaceful solution. they should be able to expect a least that much from us here in the senate. and if that solution does not succeed, they stand ready. while i share the concerns expressed by the agreements critics about what may happen 1y years, or 15 years or 20 years from now, i can not in good conscience take action that shi would shift the potential risks of 2026 and 2031, to 2016. i i believe this agreement is as my predecessor and friend, former u.s. senator richard lugar recently said, our best chance to stop an iranian bomb without another war in the owe middle east. i owe senator lugar and my other fellow hoosier former
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congressman lee hamilton a great debt of gratitude for theireir input and expertise throughout this process. this deal will not resolve every problem we have iran. it must be part of a comprehensive strategy toter counter the broader threat iran poses through their support for terrorists and other proxies across syria, iraq, lebanon, yemen, and elsewhere. i remain committed to working with my colleagues and friends on both sides of the aisle, to confront these challenges with a clear, decisive strategy in the middle east. thank you, mr. president. i yield back my time. >> mr. president. >> senator from minnesota. >> mr. president, i rise today m to express strong support for the joint comprehensive plan of action, the diplomatic agreement that the united states and our international partners reached with iran in july.
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i urge my colleagues to support the agreement, and to reject the resolution of disapproval. this is not a decision that i came to lightly since the agreement was announced. i have consulted with nuclear and sanctions experts inside and outside of government. obama administration officials, and including secretary of state johnnd kerry and secretary of energy ernest moniz andmbas ambassadors from the other countries that negotiated alongside of us, our intelligence communitiesael advocates for israel on both sides of the issue, my constituents in minnesota and of course with my colleagues in the senate. many have expressed reservations about the agreement and i sharef some of those reservations. not a perfect agreement. but it is a strong one.
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as many people have said no deal is better than a bad deal.rfec but that doesn't mean the only deal we agree to is a perfect deal. the last perfect deal we got was on the deck of the uss missouri. what a cost we had to pay for that including the use of a u nuclear weapon in war, the only use of actually two. this agreement is in my opinion, the most effective, realistic,ii option available to prevent iran from getting a nuclear weaponcla anytime in the next 15 years and beyond. iran must never, ever, have a nuclear weapon. and after 15 years, we will still have every option wee currently have, up to and including the use of military force, to prevent iran from getting a bomb.
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moreover while critics eagerly pointed out what they see as flaws in the deal, i have heard there is a better alternative. the agreement impose as series of physical limits on iran'snucl nuclear program especially its production of the fissile material it would require to make a bomb and the agreement's verification provisions are extremely strong. 24/7 monitoring of andf unfettered act test to iran'sd nuclear sites and ongoing s surveillance of iran's nuclear supply chain. letin me briefly review the central limits on its nuclear nc program that iran has agreed to and in the verification provisions the together they are designed to prevent iran fromg trying to get a nuclear weapon and to detect them if they do with enough time to respond
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forcefully and effectively. the agreement will prevent iran from using weapons-grade plutonium as fissile material for a nuclear weapon by requiring iran to redesign and rebuild the iraq nuclear reactor. which if completed as planned, could have produced enough weapons-grade plutonium for one or two bombs each year. under the agreement it wouldn't be able to do that. iran has to pull out the core of the nuclear reactor. and fill it with concrete, to to destroy it. and iran can't get any sanctions relief until it does that. the agreement also significantly reduces and limits iran's production of uranium, which in its highly-enriched form canal also be used in a bomb.
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iran currently has about 19 --t 19,500 centrifuges capable of enriching uranium. t it has stockpiled 10 tons of low-enriched-uranium the under the agreement iran has to go down to about 5,000 first generation centrifuges in enriching uranium and down to 300 kilograms of low-enriched uranium, a 98% reduction and iran does not get any sanctions relief until it does that. right now it would take iran two about two to three months to get one weapons worth of weapons-grade uranium. that have called the breakout time. longer the breakout time, ofe, o course the better. and in this agreement it will increase the breakout time to one year for the first decade.
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and because of the inspections included in the agreement, if iran tries to cheat at nuclear facilities for a bomb, we would catch them almost instantaneously an have more than tough time to respond effectively. iran's nuclear facilities will be subject to 24/7 monitoring, and unfettered access by inspectors of the international atomic energy agency or the iaea. limitations on iran's nuclear facilities and strict verification make it impossible for iran to dash for a bomb at its known nuclear facilities for the next 15 years. but the verification provisions are also important for another reason they make it being much c more difficult for iran to go into a bomb in secret as well.
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beyond 24/7 monitoring of and unfettered access to iran's nuclear sites, international wil inspectors will also be guaranteed access to any site in iran that they have suspicions about including military sites. now, a lot has been made about a provision in the agreement for resolving the dispute when the iaea seeks to access suspicious sites in iran. that process can take up to 24 days. a lot of confused and misleading things have been said about this. it is important again to emphasize that there is continuous monitoring at iran's declared nuclear sites, a unique safeguards on iran's nuclear supply chain. that is not what the 24-dayy controversy is about. where the 24 days comes in is in
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those cases where iran disputes the iaea's demand for access to a suspicious, undeclared site people have expressed concerns that the 24 days is too long. prime minister netanyahu has likened this to giving a drug dealer 24 days notice before you check his premises saying, thatt gives a lot of time for the drug dealer to flush a lot of drugs down the toilet. and the problem with this criticism. you can't hide radioactive material like uranium.. it leaves traces behind that you can detect for far, far longer than 24 days. quote, if iran were to flush the evidence down the toilet, they would have a radioactive toilet. and if they were to rip out the
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toilet, they would have aut radioactive hole in the ground.n uranium 235 has a half-life of over 700 million years. and the half-life of uranium 238 is over 4 billion years. the iaea will catch iran after 24 days. now it is true there are some activities related to weapons design, for example, that don't use nuclear materials and they are much easier to hide. that is a genuine challenge thae inspectors and our intelligences efforts will face but the fact is that you can move a computer that you're doing design work on in 20 four seconds, or -- 24 seconds or erase stuff in 244 milliseconds. i'm sure it is actually a lot faster than that but iran is still not allowed to conductt those activities under the
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agreement and will face severese consequences if they get caught. so, the bottom line is that iaea's guaranteed access tocces suspicious sites will help support the verification of the agreement. perhaps more importantly we will also have ongoing surveilance of iran's nuclear supply chain. that means in order to make a nuclear weapon in the next 15 years and even beyond iran woula have to reconstruct every individual piece of the chain. the mining, the milling, the production of centrifuges and more. separately, and in secret. and it would have to make sure it didn't get caught in any of the steps. agr this agreement, plus our own comprehensive intelligence efforts would make it exceedingly unlikely that iranee would be able to get away with
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any of that. and iran would therefore risk ee losing everything it gained from the deal and reimposition of sanctions, to say nothing of military attack. you don't have to trust the regime's intentions tome's understand the reality it wouldn face, attempting to cheat on this agreement would carry an overwhelming likelihood of getting caught and serious consequences if it does. we still have work to do to diminish the threat iran poses to our national security. and of course to the safety of our allies in the middle east. beginning with israel. sanctions are lifted the non-nuclear threat to the region may very well grow. it will need to bolster our support to regional counter weights such as saudi arabia and of course, we'll need to
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maintain our terrorism-related sanctions which are unaffected t by the deal.osel we also need to work very closely with israel. our greatest friend in the region, in order to assure its security. as a jew i feel a deep bond with israel. as senator i have worked very hard to strengthen our country's bond with that nation and to s bolster its security and i will continue to do that. a nuclear armed iran would be al truly grave threat to israel and so i believe this agreement will contribute to the security of israel because it is the most effective available means of preventing iran from becoming nuclear armed. so and so do a number of very senior israeli security experts including some of the former
8:30 am there is no doubt in my mind that this deal represents ap significant step for our own national security.e c one concern has been raised about what happens after year 15 when many of the restrictions in the deal expire? well, there will still be major checks on iran's nuclear prograr after that date. under the deal iran will be subject to permanent, specific prohibitions on several steps necessary tory build a bomb. nuc iran's nuclear program will still be subject to heightened monitoring by the iaea and iran's nuclear supply chain will still be subject to uniquely-intrusive monitoring. which will limit iran's ability to divert nuclear tears andto
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equipment to a secret program without being detected. iran must never, ever, have a nuclear weapon. an we will still have every option we currently have up to and including using military force to prevent that from happening but we also must begin now to make the case to the world that danger posed by iranian nuclear weapon will nota expire in 15 years and remind iran should it begin to take worrisome steps such as enrichment inconsistent with a peaceful program, we stand ready that said, we don't know what the world will look like in 15 years. as long as this regime holds power, iran will represent a dangerous threat to our security but it is possible that by 2031, iran may no longer be controlled
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by hard-liners determined tod harm our interests. more than 60% of iran's population is now under the age these young iranians are increasingly well-educated and pro-american. weic don't know how this tension within iran will work out. but i think if we reject this agreement, we will lose this opportunity with the people of iran.. if we back out of a deal that we have agreed to, we will only embolden the hard-liners who insist that america can not be trusted and we will be doing self-inflicted damage to american global leadership and of international diplomacy. once more, the alternatives that i have heard run the gamut fromo unrealistic to horrifying. for example, some say that
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should the senate reject this agreement we would be in a position to negotiate a better one. but i have spoken to the ambassadors or deputy chiefs ofa mission of each of the five nations who helped broker the deal with us and they all agree that this simply would not be the case. instead these diplomats havema able to come back to the bargaining table at all, and that the sanctions regimes would likely erode or just fall apart completely. giving iran's leaders more money and more leverage and diminishing both our moral authority throughout the world and our own, our own leverage. that is just, just the reality.b and of course iran would be able to move forward on its nuclear
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program, endangering our interests in the region, especially israel and making it far more likely we will find ourselves engaged in a military conflict there. if iran cheats on thisag agreement, and we are a part of it, we will have a say in the international response. if we are not a part of this agreement, we will not. now, most of opponents of this, of the agreement do not seek org want war with iran, even if opposition to the treatmentmake makes such a war, in my opinion, more likely. but some of them do. one of my colleagues suggested that we should simply attack iran now, an exercise he believes would be quick and painless for the united states.
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in fact he compared it tored operation desert fox intimating it would be over and done with in a matter of days. but this is pure fantasy, at least according to what our security around intelligence experts tells us. it is certainly not the lessonod everyone should have learned from the disasterous invasion of iraq. the middle east is an unstable, unpredictable, largely unfriendly region. we know that military undertaket in the region are likely to bring very painful, unpredictable consequences. that is why we should really give diplomacy a chance. yet a number of my colleagues and, others were intent on opposes such a diplomatic solution even before the agreement was reached. in march, i would ask unanimousf
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consent for another two minutes? >> without objection.ject >> thank you. thank you, mr. president. in march, 47 of my republican colleagues took the unprecedented step of sending a letterep to iran's leaders justs the sensitive negotiations were nearing an accord. it was a clear attempt to undermine american diplomacy and signal they would oppose any deal with iran no matter what the terms. not surprising these critics now this point they refuse to acknowledge, let alone take responsibility for, the direonsi consequences that would almost certainly result from killing am it. it is possible that there would not be a war if we reject the agreement but what seemsreem undeniable is that if we, and we alone are to walk away from an agreement that we negotiated alongside our international partners, that would be a severe, a severe blow to ournd
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standing and our leadership in the world. diplomacy requires cooperation and compromise. negotiate with youryo friends. you negotiate with your enemies. indeed no one, who is for this deal has any illusions about the nature of the iranian regime.nin anymore than the american presidents who made nuclearlear agreements with the soviet union had illusions about the nature of the communist regime there. for a long time it looked like our only options, when it came to iran would be allowing it to have a nuclear weapon or having the bomb the country ourselves. this agreement represents a chance to break out of that no-win scenario. and tono take the extraordinary step of rejecting it because of clearly unrealisticlear expectations, because of atati hunger to send americans into another war, or worst of all,
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because of petty partisanship would be a terrible mistake. i therefore urge my colleagues to vet prevent this resolution of disapproval from moving forward and vote in support of the agreement. thank you. >> senator from iowa. >> mr. president. >> the senator from hawaii. >> mr. president, i support the joint comprehensive plan of action that we've agreed to with our international partners and with iran. wit this agreement implemented effectively is the best option we have to prevent iran from getting a nuclear weapon. i sit on the armed services and intelligence committees. we have had numerous hearings. administration. i met with our international the partners. have studied theea deal itself. i read commentary and analyses
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from all different perspectives. i've asked hard questions. i've reached my conclusions, based on the facts before us. this decision was not easy andnd should not be easy. like every member of this body, i'm committed to israel's security. i'm concernedrn about iran'sn's statements against israel. and iran's support for terrorism. these concerns are real and valid. nuclear proliferation is one of the most consequential national security matters facing the world. clearly a nuclear iran is so i would expect that anyreem agreement to stop iran from getting a nuclear weapon is given serious, thoughtful, consideration. yet, there are those in this body and elsewhere who oppose
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even the idea of a diplomatic solution, at least one,ne negotiated by the obama administration. they made clear their intention to oppose the agreement, even while the negotiations were taking place. for the first time i'm aware of in u.s. history, dozens of senators signed an open letter to a foreign government. the government of an adversary no less, stating that any agreement reached by this administration would be undone.a before the actual ink was put to paper on the agreement that was their message. then within hour of the deal's announcement, the same voices that he opposed negotiations in the first place started denounces it as a bad deal. some claimed we could get a better deal. others said no deal was preferrable, despite the fact that iran was within two to three months of getting ab.
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nuclear bomb. i'm fairly certain these people hadn't read the deal before they made such statements at the verv outset. that is not how we should conduct foreign policy. our national security, the security of israel, and the stability of the middle east are too important to turn into t campaign ads or politicalolit rhetoric. as we prepare to vote this afternoon, i'd ask my colleagues to set politics aside and focus the fact is, this agreement is the best option we have to stop iran from getting a nuclear weapon.e h first, we reached this agreement with the backing of ouratio international partners including china and russia. i along with some of my other colleagues met with the ambassadors of these countries and i asked them point-blank, would you come back to the table to bargain for another agreement if the united states walks away.
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they said no. there already is an agreement. it is the one that congress should be supporting. the ambassador to the united states from the u.k. also said no. i remind my colleagues that after decades of u.s. unilateral sanctions against israel it wasi the weight of international sanctions, international sanctions, that forced iran to the table. we need our partners to makeeal this deal work. and our partners have committed that if we choose this path,h, t they will stand with us. they will be with us. second, the terms of this effectively, cut off iran's ability to create a bomb. the uranium stockpiles will be we will have unprecedented oversight over the entire nuclear supply chain. the u.s. intelligence community has indicated that it will gain
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valuable new insight through this agreement. indeed, with the information that can be garnered through this agreement, our intelligence community will be able to provide information that will enable us to make sure that iran stands up and abides by theprov provisions of this deal. we'll have veto authority over what goes into iran and we will know what comes out of iran. these unprecedented oversight provisions have the support of arms control experts, nuclearsce scientists, diplomats, military and intelligence leaders, all of who believe that this deal will make the difference.nce. >> the senator's time has expired. >> i would ask unanimous consene for one more minute? >> without objection. >> finally this agreement is about trust. the deal requires verificationao that iran is cooperating before
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sanctions can be lifted. if iran cheats we can snap back sanctions and with international support. we can initiate military operations if need be. repeat. the deal before us does not prevent the u.s. from taking military action if needed.need this agreement is not perfect. however, rejecting this deal means risking internationaloper cooperation, our security and our ability to prevent iran from getting a nuclear weapon. based on the facts before us, this agreement deserves our support. let's put politics aside. i urge my colleagues to join me in opposing the resolution before us today. i urge my colleagues to supporth the agreement.d t i yield the floor. >> mr. president. >> the senator from: t massachusetts. >> thank you, mr. president. mr. president, for more than half a century the united states has led global efforts to stoped the spread of nuclear weapons.
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since the 19 70's the international community has set rules and procedures to prevent the weapons from spreading i particularly to unstable regions plagued by instability and civil war. we face this challenge in iran. nuclear weapon in the hands of iriran is very dangerous and real threat not only to israel and entire middle east but to all of humanity. we are in unanimous agreement that iran must never become a nuclear weapons state. iran has given us good reason to be kept skeptical of it intentions. it misled the world about nuclear program and is state sponsor terrorism and is destablizing force in thet middle east. with nuclear weapons the threat imposed by iran would increaser, exponentially. because of these factors we can not trust iran or give it a free pass on its destablizing
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activity in the region and around the globe. as we speak today, iran has the capability to develop a nuclear weapon within three months. with the iran nuclear agreement that will no longer be possible. i believe that our negotiators achieved as much as possible and that if the agreement they negotiated is strictly implemented, it can do the job.h away now, our diplomaticcoal and the prospects for anynewe renewed effort would not be promising. together with many other senators i met with the ambassadors of the five countries that joined in the effort to reach this agreement. great britain, france, germany, china, and russia. their message was unified and crystal clear. if the united states walks away right now, then we will be on our own and they will not come back to the table. i acknowledge that the agreement
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carries risks but as recently stated in a letter signed by 29n leading american nuclear scientists, including six nobel laureates, this agreement contain, quote, more stringent constraint than any non-proliferation framework. l the agreement puts strict limits on iran's nuclear program for the next 15 years. it reduces iran's existing nuclear program to a fraction of its current size.tes it virtually eliminates iran's plutonium capabilities and reduces its uranium capabilities by 2/3. it pushes back the time required before iran would be capable ofu three months, to more than one year. but as i said earlier, thisreem agreement is not based on trust. it imposes the most invasive, iv stringent and technologically innovative verification regime ever negotiated.
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the agreement empowers a inspectors to use the most advanced and intrusive methods toon monitor iran's compliance. this verification system will provide an unprecedented amount of reliable information and insight into iran's nuclear program insuring that if iran ti ever tries to develop a nuclear weapon, we will find out about it in time to stop them.afte after 15 years both under this agreement and the nuclear non-proliferation treaty iran will remain bound never to seek nuclear weapons in paragraph three off the agreement iran categorically makes the following binding operation and i quote, under no circumstancesi will iran ever seek to develop or acquire any nuclear weapons. under the agreement iran will be required to give the iaea detailed plans for how it intend to develop nuclear technology for peaceful use. it will remain forever subject
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to iaea inspections to verify that it never seeks nuclear weapons or engages in any nuclear weapons-related activities. and if the iaea ever finds anything suspicious, not just is 10 or 15 or 25 or 40 years, but forever, then it will be the iaea's duty to promptly report its suspicions to the world. sus the iaea's ability to verify iran's compliance is the key to this agreement. it will be critical to provideee international inspectors with the support they require toctor detect, investigate and respond to any suspicious nuclear activity before iran has time to cover up the evidence. with our support the iaea can anand must aggressive investigae any indication of iranian nuclear weapons activities and report promptly and unequivocally if iran cheats.t b likewise we must be prepared to
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react at anytime that the iaea sounds the alarm.soun i supported the tough sanctionsb that brought iran to the negotiating table in the first place and there are mechanisms in this agreement to snap back sanctions quickly and prevent a chinese or russian veto. even with nuclear weapons, evena without nuclear weapons iran poses very real risks, our particularly to israel, ourhe closest friend in the region and to our partners in the arabiantt peninsula. ass the administration has assured us it is working with closely with regional partners to enhance their security. congress must be an active, insist extent and bipartisan partner this effort both with this president and his successors. we must m increase our security assistance to israel, to unprecedented levels.els. i have always been a strong supporter of israel. when saddam hussein was developing a nuclear weapons in
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1981 i supported israel's decision to bomb the reactor. when israel needed more funding for a missile defense system in 2010 i voted to accelerate the e development of the iron dome system. when hamas attacked israel in 2012, i supported israel's right to israel's qualitative, military edge in the region and promptly finalize our new 10-year memorandum of understanding to cement our security assistance commitments. w likewise, we must strengthen our relationships with all of our regional partners. the countrieses of the arabian peninsula require our assistancs to counter threats from iran. i our cooperation in ballistic missile defense and encountering violent extremists through intelligence sharing and interdiction must continue and be enhanced. over the past two months i have
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consulted with many stakeholders, groups, advocatesd and concerned constituents on both sides of this debate. without exception, their passion is born of an unwavering desire to secure a lasting peace for the middle east, israel, the united states, and the world. and this is a passion that i share. the world has come together in an historic way, with the agreement, we gain much but mosr important, we avoid missing the significant diplomaticppor opportunity to insure that iran never emerges as a nuclear weapons state. with this agreement, we will maintain the international solidarity that will enable us to reimpose sanctions if iran ever does try to get a nuclear weapon. we will keep an continue tof improve all of our capabilities required to prevent iran from becoming a nuclear weapons state including a military option.
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i thank secretary kerry, secretary moniz and the entire u.s. negotiating team for their tireless efforts and service tod our country and in helping reach this agreement. i also want to thank president obama for his leadership and commitment to diplomacy. i urge the senate to come together to support this to diplomatic effort to preventrom iran from ever getting a nuclear weapon, not just this month or this year, but forever.we m we must be ever vigilant to insure that every part of this agreement is verified. i thank you, mr. president. and i yield back the balance of my time. >> mr. president, make no mistake there is not a single member in it body, the united states of senate or house of representatives, the american public i believe indeed that would complain about the president's initial goal, the goals that he laid out asut recently as october of 2012 as he began negotiations with iran. and i quote the president. our goal is to get iran to
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recognize it needs to give up its talk clear program and abide by the u.n. resolutions that have been in place. the deal we'll accept is they end their nuclear program. it's very straight forward. administration is anything but straightforward, ending of a nuclear program. i have listened very carefully to the v hearings we've held. i listen to the classified briefings. i have studied the language of s thetu text. language that, says things likeg requests for access pursuant to the jcpoa will be made in goodi faith with due observance of sovereign rights to iran kept to minimum necessary to effectively implement verification responsibilities under thisr c jcpoa. senator collins from maine a couple days ago said it very well. not only will iran retain its nuclear capability, but it will also be a far richer nation and
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one that has more conventional possesses today. this doesn't end the nuclear program as the president stated it continues it. it paves a patient pathway to an industrial nuclear complex in iran. with the blessings of the world community, a flourishing economy, a lifting of the conventional arms embargo. a lifting of the ballistic lif heard colleague after colleaguel come to the floor supporting this deal say things like this deal is flawed. it is not the best. it needs improvement. the united states senate become the only option in the uniteded states senate? since when did second, third,
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fourth, fifth best for this country become the best for this country?ral several months ago i had the opportunity as have many colleagues to visit with prime minister netanyahu to talk about the dance of porcupines createdt by entering this deal. the nuclear tripwire that will be set up because this does not end iran's nuclear program. but through this deal we've given up the golden nuggets ofva leverage that we had with iran. our leverage of sanctions that were beginning to work. in fact the briefings we all attended where analysts have said our sanctions are eroding support for the regime daily.tig hurting their economy, devaluating their currency. bringing them to the table. and yet the deal that we have allows continued uraniumed enrichment, repeal of u.n. resolutions, removal of the iran
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nuclear issue from their agenda. and that's the benefit of the we heard talk over the pasthe several days about status quo versus hypothetical. here is the status quo we'll be entering into. a status quo within five years allows conventional arms to resume in iran. a status quo that will allow ballistic missiles to resume in eight years. advanced centrifuge research toe continue. as the chairman of the committee stated yesterday, talking about one irh centrifuge could replace vast numbers of the current centrifuges they have today they will be allowed to keep, k apparently all for radio isotope purposes. why do they need ballistic missiles, conventional arms? for radiation treatment? we've desanctioned and delisted numerous individuals, people whe are fathers of iranian nuclear
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program, the a.q. khan of iran, delisted, desanctioned under this deal. conglomerates of companies like ico are delisted, desanctioned under this deal. a group of companies that was sanctioned in 2003, not because of nuclear-arms related issues but because of their threat to the world financial system. that conglomerate is nowan desanctioned under the terms of this deal.ted sure the united states gets to,b sanction them on our own but as we heard today, yesterday, thee, day before, sanctions that the aren't enough. and that is why we have to enter into this deal. yet we have juan sarati, sword f of damocles over iranians head snap back provisions that are apparently good enough when we do them on our own. one of the things that hasn't been talked about very much over the past several weeks is a letter that secretary kerry sent
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september 2nd. that was right around the same day enough votes were tolock achieved or block or sustain the president's, to sustain the par president's filibuster it. in the first paragraph of letter every senator received there are two sentences i want to make sure everybody here recognizes.s we share the concern expressed by againby the letter from secretary kerry. we share the concern expressed e by many in congress regarding's iran's continued support fornd terrorists and proxy groups throughout the region, its propping up assad regime inlity syria, its effort to undermine stability of regional neighbors and threat it poses to israel. in the very next sentenc secretary kerry goes on to say, we have no illusion this behavior will change following implementation of the joint agreement. we have no illusion that iran's behavior will change. that's the status quo.the the letter goes on to detail with we are going to do though
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once this deal is entered into. additional u.s. and gulf council countries, working groups are focused on counterterrorism and military. goal of building political support for multilateralba ballistic missile defense we' cooperation. we'll enter into some deals to fight ballistic missiles. tha that is this deal allows inin eight years. . . o arms transfers." conventional arms impartial lifted in five years. the letter goes on to say that "we will work on missile technology control regimes, guidelines about the transfer of sensitive systems like ballistic missile technology," and yet this deal allows ballistic missiles in eight years. u.s. support for israel and our gulf partners has never been a partisan issue," the letter goes ton saivment "and we believe these proposals would receive wide bipartisan support."
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mr. president, this is a partisan deal with bipartisan opposition. and i would submit to you that the only element of bipartisanship on the senate floor today is the opposition. floor today is the opposition. and i urge my colleagues to vote to invoke cloture. the american people deserve to know where the united states stands and deserves to know where their member stands for the united states. mr. president, i yield back. >> mr. president, i rise today to speak about the joint conference a plan of action agreement on the media. i ask unanimous consent that my entire statement, the meticulous when i arrived at my decision be
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included in the record. >> without objection. >> mr. president, i just want to comment as we move forward to voting later on this afternoon, i deeply regret that the proposal offered by the democratic leader, mr. reid, was rejected so that every senator could vote not on a procedural vote that would be so determinative, but that our name would be called for the record to show where we, by our name, took that position. and i regret that we are now so entangled in parliamentary maneuvering that we are deciding how we should proceed in government. but enough of that procedure and process. let's go on with about. this vote is a serious that i taken in a number of years. the reason for the is that it
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will be irrevocable. this vote as monumental and indoor in consequences. throughout my review of this deal my questions have always been how does it deal with the safety and security of the united states, and how does it deal with the safety, security and viability of the state of israel? for all of my time in both the house and the senate i didn't unabashed and unwavering supporter of israel. i have persistently support the sanctions that brought iran to the table. i have been insisted and persisted on foreign aid and military assistance to israel that maintains its qualitative military edge on missile defense. and mr. president, with the horrors of the holocaust in mind, i've been deeply committed to the need of a jewish homeland for the state of israel that has
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been their ability to defend itself, and israel can always count on the united states of america as an unwavering partner in its defense. i have always been and will always be committed to the principles. however, my conclusions are that this deal does block the pathway to nuclear bomb. that this deal does create the most robust and extensive verification system ever produced by the iaea. that iran will be the most heavily inspected nuclear state that has ever been, has existed since their history. the history of the international atomic energy agency. the petitions for the lifting of the sanctions are strict and verifiable combat of the lifting of the sanctions still come more
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quickly than i would like, would snap that could work. but after looking at all of the alternatives, which i believe a limited efficacy, i want to declare that i will support the agreement. let me tell you how i got there. i took an extensive review of this deal covering every aspect of the. i actually read of the classified and unclassified and next, every single page. i met with u.s. diplomats, nuclear experts, national security staff. i met with critics of the bill. i met with constituents on both sides. i went to every classified and unclassified brief, and i actually went to the and the to meet with the international atomic energy agency and spent a great deal of time delving into their staff, their capacity, their capability, their
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integrity and their independence. i did my homework and ask the tough questions. first, doesn't block the path was to nuclear bomb? yes, i believe it does. because, mr. president, there are no shortcuts to nuclear bomb. this be your blocks iran's ability to weapons-grade plutonium. and iraq, that is arak, not iraq, the arak reactor will be redesigned. secondly, it dramatically a drastically cuts the iranian enrichment capabilities, reducing the centrifuges at fordo and add-ons. and third, -- natanz. also equally important, monitors what it takes to build a nuclear bomb. the uranium supply chain and
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procurement chain and it does it for 25 years. it also reduces the uranium stockpile of the levels needed to make a bomb. the answer to the questions are, isn't verifiable, into inspections work to detect an overt and covert violation of the agreement? the answer is yes, i believe it does. the iaea has extensive access to iranian declared nuclear sites, making the detection of violation and the detection of any covert program more likely. it has direct access to centrifuge manufacturing sites and can conduct inspections on short notice. in answer to my fourth question, does the iaea have capacity, capability, integrity, and independence to do this? from talking to both those in the nuclear field as well as the
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visit to vienna, i would say yes, i believe it has sufficient expertise and independence to implement this deal. but i must also caution my colleagues. in order for the international atomic energy agency to do its job, we will be to monitor the resources of that agency, and not engage in shenanigans in the cr to defund the iaea to ostensibly derail this deal. if you don't like the deal, your vote is today. in answering my this question is, what sanctions will be lifted, and under what conditions? i sure would have preferred over three years or longer. sanctions will be suspended, not terminated. everybody has to understand this. sanctions will be suspended and
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terminated. iran has to take certain steps to limit uranium enrichment program, allow for the proper inspections, and others. only after the iaea completes it, it assessment, will it be possible to be able to suspend sanctions. now, do i think snapback will work? russia, china and india and and our european partners share a common interest in iran not having a nuclear weapon. i believe they would support a snapback in sanctions if violations were identified and verified. but a snapback sanction mechanism is innovative but untested, and that takes me then to the alternatives. is it an adequate you? the answer is yes. is it a magnificent deal? not so sure. but what are the alternatives? i believe that the alternatives
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that the alternatives are extremely limited, and they have limited efficacy. the two alternatives are more sanctions and military action. some have suggested that if we reject this view we should impose unilateral sanctions and force iran back to the table. i think it's very unclear if the eu, russia, china, india and others would continue sanctions. entity to think snapback will work, enhanced sanctions will not work for the same reason. then there's the possibility of military action. i put the military option pashtun i believe the military option should be on the table absolutely, but taking military strikes against iran would only set the program back three years. it would not terminate the iranian nuclear effort, which they have right now.
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we have to realize where is iran now. they have nuclear capability. we are blocking their pathway to a bomb. no deal is perfect, especially one that dershowitz and iranian regime by public it's the best option available to block iran from having a nuclear bomb, and for this i will support the deal with my vote. >> the senator from illinois spent please advise both sides of the time remaining. >> republicans have 11 minutes 20 seconds. democrats have five minutes five seconds. >> mr. president, over the past five months we have learned much about the joint coverage the plan of action and intentions of iran's ayatollahs. we know the nuclear deal were released billions of dollars to the tears sponsoring a run for she. we know jason soleimani and
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other would relate of international sanctions. we know that the site just between the iaea and iran, cited as we get to see in the senate may entrust the iranian regime to collect its own verification samples at its most secret nuclear specific on iran to monitor it's so instead of verifiable real independent inspection. we know the right to enrich at all that this administration conceived early on will trigger an arms race in the middle east. just this week ambassador from united arab emirates told the chairman of the house foreign affairs committee that if this deal goes through, the uae and no longer abide by its nonproliferation commitments and they begin an enrichment program. either saudi arabia, egypt, turkey and other countries may follow suit. we know the ayatollahs fresh from the negotiating table in vienna continue to lead crowd in chants of death to america, edition threats at our president
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and our people. and yes, we know that the deal will begin to expire in emir 10 to 15 years unleashing a nuclear-capable iran on the world free of international sanctions with a healthy economy and without the restraints that american diplomacy has painstakingly cultivated over the past decade. but in the end our vote on the iran nuclear deal will not turn on any of these particulars. ultimately this vote isn't about specific centrifuge numbers or enrichment levels or the exact scope of sanctions relief. know, it is simpler than that. this vote is about history. it is not the responsibility of this senate and the greatest republic in history. it's about were walked the course of history to leave for our children and our grandchildren. this vote is not about a party or a president. after all, the iranians chant death to america, not death to democrats can not just republicans, but death to our president death to america.
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just as we can they can labeled america the great satan. so this vote is about empowering and evil terror sponsoring regime and continuing this history of seizing a moment to change history. because this deal is approved in just a few years, i ran the test a nuclear device, as north korea did in 2006 just 12 years after a similar nuclear agreement or with the explosion that will sheikh the earth, iran announced its status as a nuclear power and the opening of a second nuclear age that our nation is struggled so long to prevent. if iran goes nuclear, history will not remember the senators who supported the stupid when i was a hand wrangling, the speeches, the brow berlin to 100 member of the global beliefs about the flawed inspection system and will not remember rationalizations that this deal is better than nothing where the only alternative is more predictable on remember your vote, and only your vote.
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ever remember that you opened the gate to iran's path to a nuclear weapon. it whenever you as the ones who flipped the strategic balance of the middle east and the world towards in favor of our enemies but it will remember you condescended and as president as the ones who when given the chance to stop the world's worst sponsor of terrorism from occurring the world's worst weapon, point when confronted with his people. -- this menace. iran is china's entry hezbollah enters to do their bidding. iran fueled roadside bombs and suicide attacks devastated iraq and sadly killed or maimed thousands of american troops. and iran has sowed unrest throughout the middle east and cropped up bashar poli-sci degraded crisis that has engulfed the entire region of
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this fast spreading beyond its borders to other parts of the world -- bashar al-assad. iran has done all this without nuclear weapons. should be allowed to continue enrichment to conduct research and development of nuclear technology, the ayatollahs will grow even more brazen, fearsome, reckless and insulated from conventional forms of deterrent pressure. upon the expiration of this deal a rich repudiation by the ayatollahs at the time of their choosing, iran's strategy of terror and intimidation will become nuclearized. that is the world we may face in a few short years because of your votes. that is the threat will confront if you bestow your blessing on the nuclear program run by the anti-american, anti-israel jihadists regime in tehran. so we should soberly recognize in the context of this vote, is it debate that is has come to close, the context is a demagoguery or backward pressure a lame-duck president and isn't the effect of this vote on a political fortunes. the context for this vote is the
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broad sweep of history. in late 1936 winston churchill spoke on the years of british appeasement in the face of german we armament. he observed with the air of procrastination half measures, soothing and expedience come up delays of coming to a close. in its place we are entering a period of consequences. churchill's word worst artist wd as they were then picked we are entering a period of consequences. because of the vote today, the consequences may well be nuclear. god help us all if they are. yield the floor. >> mr. president? >> the senator from maryland. >> mr. president, i am pleased sure it will have a chance to vote. i would prefer to devote to be on the final passage of the resolution with a 60-vote threshold. i regret that that was not agree to. and i will vote what i think is in the best interest of our
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country, to keep a rich becoming a nuclear weapons state, and our best chance to avoid a military option. i've already indicated that i intend to oppose the agreement and i've given my recent on the floor and i will not repeat that this moment. i want to talk about what happens if this vote is over. and whatever vote takes place next week with a deadline being next thursday. at that time i hope everyone here recognizes that it's important for us to put division aside. just want to remind some of my colleagues what happened 14 years ago when they vote with iraq, the authorization for force. i voted against that resolution. and when that vote was over, democrats can republicans, proponents and opponents join together to support our troops and their mission under the leadership of president bush, give america the best chance for its foreign policy to succeed. so when the votes are over, i
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hope that democrats and republicans, proponents and opponents of the plan will work how congressional involvement, working with the president gives us our best opportunity to prevent iran from becoming a nuclear weapons state. and renews arkansas the least risk of using a military option. i say that because my colleague from maryland outlined a very close. and military option, we must also have the option in our quilt. the military option will not solve the problem and it has a lot of federal consequences. i hope that we can work together because that's what's in the best interest of the united states senate. that's what's in the best interest of the united states of america. i look forward to working with senator corker and all members of the senate foreign relations committee and united states senate to see how congress can
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work together with our president so that we can achieve that goal. with that, mr. president, i yield the floor. >> mr. president? >> the senator from florida. >> mr. president, i would agree. i know the senator from tennessee would like to close on december. i think that if he needs to be said about the details have already been said. i want to be recorded for history's purposes for i know what is going to happen in regards if it goes through. iran will immediately gives the money that it is received and sanctions were lifted he can to build up its conventional capabilities to a well-established the most dominant military power in the region outside of the united states and it will raise the price of us operating in the region. they will go at that access capabilities, rockets cable of destroying our aircraft carriers and ships, contingent build -- fast vote for able to swarm our naval assets. it will make it harder and harder for his troops to be in the region. they will also work with other
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terrorist groups to target american servicemen and women. at me i may not deny they are involved but they will target as to raise the price of our presence in the face and tell the help to completely pull out of the region. they will continue to build long-range missiles, missiles capable of reaching the united states. those are not affected by this do and to continue to build them as they been doing. at some point when the time is right they will build a nuclear weapon. they will do so because at that point they will know if they become immune to, that we will no longer get to strike their nuclear program because the price of doing so will be too high. this is not just the work of imagination to it exists today, called north korea. were a lunatic possessive dozens of nuclear weapons at a long-range rocket that can already reach the united states. and we cannot do anything about it. an attack on north korea today would result in an attack on tokyo or seoul or guam or hawaii or california. so the world must now live with a lunatic in possession of
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nuclear weapons. this is the goal iran as as well, to reach a point where they become immune, to any sort of credible military threat because the price of a military strike would be too high. and then they become an established nuclear weapons power. never in history of the world have such a regime ever possessed weapons so capable of destruction. iran is led by supreme leader who is a radical shia cleric with an apocalyptic vision of the future. he is not a traditional geopolitical actor who make decisions on the basis of borders or simply history or because of ambition. he has a religious apocalyptic vision of the future. one that calls for triggering a conflict between the non-muslim world and the muslim world, one that he feels especially obligated to trigger and to possess nuclear weapons. this is the work we are on the verge of leaving our children to inherit and perhaps we ourselves will have to share any. so want to be recorded for
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history's purposes if nothing else to say that those of us who oppose this deal understood where it will eat and we're making a terrible mistake. and i fear if passage of this do will make it even harder for us to prevent it and to help that there's still time to change our minds, but here's the good news. iran may have a supreme. but america does not. infestation we have a republic and soon we'll have new leaders perhaps in this chamber but also in the executive branch. and i put it on their first day in office they will reverse this deal and we impose sanctions at back them up with a credible threat of military force, or history will condemn us for not doing what needed to be done at this critical moment in the world history. i yield the floor. >> the senator from illinois and. >> mr. president, a lot has been said about the impact of this agreement. atlantis to promote about the impact of no agreement. what if the republicans and those who oppose this agreement have their way and disagreement goes away? iran is still a nuclear threshold state.
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if you have your way and stop this agreement, the result will be literally leaving in iran the capacity to build 10 nuclear weapons today. and the timing on that, two to three months before that material for a nuclear weapon. if you have your way and kill this agreement. that is somehow a surprise that if we walk away from this agreement, this effort for inspections, that iran could develop a nuclear weapon, that is the reality. if you had your way there will be no inspectors. iran will be closed off to the world. how can that possibly make the middle east safer for israel, for any other country in the world? how can it make it safer if we as a coalition who have worked so hard to build a disagreement fail any effort? what i've listen for in the last three days of debate is any suggestion from the other side of the aisle about what is the
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alternative to this agreement? some have been bold enough to say it's military, and we shouldn't wince at the aspect of a military solution. one senator on your side of the aisle said four days is all we need, take them out, we will take care of iran. i'vi heard that before, my frie. i heard it before the invasion of iraq where we would be greeted as liberated as would be a matter of weeks before the troops would come home. it didn't turn out that way. what we are trying to do, what depression is try to do is start a diplomatic process to avoid the military option, to avoid a war. that is why i'm supporting it. i think it is the right thing to do. i am sorry about we're about to cast is a procedure followed. twice senator reid is as senator mcconnell to give us a straight up or down clean vote on this question of disapproval by a 60-vote margin. twice senator mcconnell has objected and insisted instead on this procedural vote.
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we know where everyone stands. i do in this chamber has publicly declared where they stand on this matter. data should be the roll call we take next but, unfortunately, faced with a procedural roll call. i am opposed to the i will close by thing one more word. for six weeks i have contacted them, in fact harassed them asking them what you going to do on this important question. for any people who are critical of this senate believe it is too superficial and too partisan, i will tell you on this side of the aisle, they took their time, every the agreement. they were briefed by the intelligence agency and department of defense and they made i up to me and -- made up their mind. it is a proud moment for this institution because i think that's a we all believe to be our responsibility. as we close this debate, i ask of those if they support the agreement to vote no on the cloture motion. i yield the floor. >> mr. president, before i make
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closing comments i would ask unanimous consent to waive the mandatory quorum call with respect to the cloture vote this afternoon. >> is there objection? without objection, so ordered. >> mr. president, i want to begin by thanking the vast majority of this body, for the fact that for four times since 2010, members of this body almost unanimously passed sanctions that brought iran to the table. people on both sides of the aisle. and i want to thank people for that. i want to thank this body for another thing. when we realized that the president was going to negotiate with iran and do so through always called a nonbinding political commitment, and he is going to take this agreement director to the u.n. security council, he was not going to cause it to be a treaty, but he was going to cause it and agreed that he could execute without
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our involvement because of the fact that we brought iran to the table for the sanctions that we collectively put in place, we rose up and we passed a bill on a 98-1 basis that allowed us to go through this process we are going through today. i want to thank senator cardin has been an outstanding ranking member. what you think senator menendez before him was an outstanding chairmen and ranking member. but this agreement said we would do is we would debate come and i want to stop there and say that i think we had a dignified debate. i think people on both sides of the aisle have handled themselves as united states senators, and i'm very proud of that. the other piece of that was that we would vote, that we would let the people of this country know where we stood. we have a bipartisan majority that disapproves this deal.
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the most substantial foreign policy people on the democratic side opposed to this deal. always we've known yes, we were going to do this under regular order. and underrated order what that means is there is this procedural vote where the senate decides that debate has ended and we're going to move to a final vote. we are at that juncture come and ask michael is on the side of the aisle that on a 98-1 basis voted to allow us to vote, do not vote yes on this cloture motion, to allow each member of this senate that is handled himself so responsibly to biblical record on a majority basis where we stand on this issue. the majority of the people in the senate believe that this deal that's been negotiated is not in the national interest of this country, will not make our nation or the middle east safer. and i hope that all of us are
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going to have that opportunity to vote after we pass this procedural vote. i hope that all members of -- >> live to the floor of the u.s. senate for a brief pro forma session. 11, 2015. to the senate, i hereby appoint the honorable david purdue, a senator from the state of georgia, to perform the duties of the chair. signs orrin g. hatch, president pro tempore. of. >> sam: under the previous >> sam: under the previous >> live pictures from the pentagon now where defense secretary ashton carter and the vice chair of the joint chiefs of staff general paul selva are hosting a remembered ceremony on this 9/11. ♪ ♪
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♪ [background sounds] >> ladies and gentlemen, we are admiral margaret gibbons. >> if you would, please pray with me. god, our creator, words cannot express the depth and breadth of feelings that are present in this gathering. as only you can give grace to our attempts to articulate our thoughts, and hear our prayers.
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in our prayers of intercession for those for whom this day only serves to open deep wounds of grief and loss. blessed this day, those understandably still more the events of that fateful day. continue to strengthen, comfort and console them, and allow their resilience to be a source of inspiration and healing to this great nation. hear our prayers of gratitude, for those who gave the full measure of their devotion, the first responders, the unsung host of civilians and those in uniform who perished serving within these walls, or who sacrificed their lives in the years that followed in defense of this country. hear our prayers for guidance as we seek to uphold and maintain the memory of those who we honor. strength in this country with unity and resolve as we still face threats to our liberty. in our zeal to our desire for
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peace not be an excuse to abuse our power, and our need for justice not be jaded with hate. may we who remain live to serve you carefully and faithfully to preserve the freedom and future of the united states. almighty god, we lift up these prayers to call upon your will to transform the ceremony to service. our grief to grace, and our fellowship to a future framed with hope, that those who so valiantly died that day would be honored and our prayers and by our lives. in the strength of your name we pray, amen. >> ladies and gentlemen, 14 years ago at 9:37 a.m. the pentagon was attacked. please join us in observing a moment of silence to remember
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those who perished. [silence] spirit lives and gentlemen the vice chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, general paul selva. >> mr. secretary, distinguished guests, friends and family of survivors of the fallen, thank you for being here for this morning ceremony. my wife and i offer a very
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special welcome to each and every one of the survivors and the families and friends of those lost their lives on these grounds 14 years ago today. we know these memorial ceremonies, and you've been through many, our tough emotional filled moments for you, and we thank you for being here with us. it takes a great deal of courage to come back on a day like today that's not unlike that day in 2001, that can bring back such come in such stark relief that first brought moment when everything changed. your grief, your sal is so personal to you is shared with all of us in this nation. today our nation joined you to reflect and remember the 184 lives that ended here at the pentagon and those that perished in new york and at somerset
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county. they were all fellow americans, members of our nation's family, members of our families. but today it's about strength and resolve. we find strength in the children and spouses of the survivors who carried on, and who are here to celebrate the memory of their relatives. they have blossomed into great families and the two fine young men and women, that we should all be very, very proud of. and they are out there today making their mark on our world. i also see in the eyes of members of this audience the resolve of this nation to defend freedom and liberty were ever it is challenged. an entire generation of young american men and women put their lives on the line for the concepts of freedom and liberty that we hold dear.
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today offers all of us an opportunity to we dedicate our lives to those causes, to the things that make this nation great. we appreciate all of you being here to share this day with us to allow us to share this day with you. it is now my privilege to introduce to you our secretary of defense, the honorary ashton carter. [applause] >> general selva, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, to the families, to the families of those who lost their lives here at the pentagon, let me begin by offering on behalf of the department of defense my deepest
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condolences for the loss you suffered and the burden you continue to carry. we cannot fully appreciate how much alive changed, or how much you lost on this morning 14 years ago. we cannot understand how you have felt everyday sense to long for the laugh, to see their smile or 50 of their embrace. we simply cannot comprehend the weight of their absence. but for me ever so many others at the pentagon, the weight of their memory and our duty to honor it is something we do carry with us every day. for all of us, their memory serves as an ever-present reminder, to cherish each day with those who love us, to stay vigilant against those who would harm us come and remain tied by
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the values that have always made us great. at times we depend upon something other than what we hold in our heads and hearts to remember. maybe it's a poem taped to your mirror, maybe it's coming to this ceremony every year. for me, it's a piece of the pentagon that sits on my desk, collected from the rubble, and passed down by each of my predecessors who have served since that horrific day. beneath this piece of indiana limestone weeds a simple inscription, reads to honor the 184 people whose lives were lost, their families, and all those who sacrificed that we may live in freedom. we will never forget. we will never forget, so try as we may, we can never fully know how you feel, how you feel on
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this day. but we do know, we fully know what the lives of your loved one's name to this community, and to this nation. and i hope you know that by returning here at the pentagon each year, you set an example of strength and resilience for all of us. terrorists hope to intimidate us will find no satisfaction and no success in threatening the united states. because not only do we come back, by living in honor of those we have lost, we come back stronger than ever before. and after 14 years, and for evermore, terrorists who threaten us will learn this simple yet unbending truth. no matter how long it takes, no matter where they may hide, able to escape the long arm of
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justice. the threat from terrorism may evolve but our determination to hold these killers accountable remains constant. as americans we have the will to see that justice is done. as a military we have the capability to see that justice is done. and because of our men and women in uniform, because we can rely on the finest fighting force the world has ever known, we know that justice will be done. win terrorist attack the pentagon, they tore a hole in this building. they tore it in places in your hearts may never heal completely. but as you know better than anyone, they did not and could not take from us what defines us. as americans, we are defined by our resilience, but our readiness to stand up for our values come by our willingness
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to honor the past, even as we always begin anew. with your example, you have embodied those ideals. you've shown us how to persevere, how to move forward, how to memorialize those we have lost and what we make of our lives. so today, and all days, we honor and remember your loved ones. because of the example you have set for each of us, for our american family, you have our deepest admiration and appreciation. within this community we will never forget. we will always remember. we will continue to honor the memory of those you have lost with the work we accomplish together. [applause]
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>> ladies and gentlemen, this concludes today's ceremony. were invited to visit the interior memorial and navy reflection room for the corridor entrance until 11 a.m. thank you. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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