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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  September 8, 2015 9:00pm-11:01pm EDT

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congressman louis stokes, a dear friend and a tremendous patriot. who dedicated his life to serving our great nation. he was dedicated to expanding political and economic opportunities for all americans. and he was determined to transcend the culture of discrimination and injustice. louis stokes rose from humble beginnings in the local housing project of cleveland, ohio, to serve 30 years in the u.s. house of representatives. e was first elected in 1968. re-- reluctant to enter the political arena, he was persuaded to run for office by his younger brother, carl b. stokes, the first african-american mayor of a major american city. elected in 1967. prior to serving in congress, mr. stokes served as a civil rights lawyer and he was the
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first african-american to represent the state of ohio in congress and was a founding member of the congressional black caucus. throughout his tenure in the house, he chaired several congressional committees and was the first african-american to win a seat on the house appropriations committee. during his long tenure in congress, he headed and participated in several major house investigations. in march of 1977, he was appointed to lead the select committee on assassinations, formed to conduct an investigation of the circumstances surrounding the deaths of president john f. kennedy and the dr. martin luther king jr. he also served as chairman of the house permanent select committee, on intelligence, and becoming the first african-american member of congress to head this committee. he was a dean of the ohio congressional delegation. his work in the area of health led to his appointment as a member of the pepper commission of combre hencive health care
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-- comprehensive health care and he was the founder and chairman of the congressional black caucus health brain trust on health. in 1981, he chaired the house committee on standards and official conduct. when he retired in 1998, he became the first african-american in the history of the u.s. congress to retire after 30 years of service. following his service in congress, he became a senior a global law firm and distinguished visiting professor at the mandel school of applied social sciences. he also served as the vice chairman of the pew environmental health commission at the johns hopkins school of ealth and was appointed as chairman of the advisor committee on minority health. as a founding member of the congressional black caucus, he
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engineered a vehicle that would force the clan ration rand strategic a-- collaboration and strategic alliances for generations. because of his visionary leadership, we all benefit from an organization powerful enough to engage in power and excite generations of african-american leaders who influenced the political landscape, impact outcome of elections and served as strong voices for those weakened by poverty, discrimination and lack of opportunity. mr. speaker, i am proud and honored to have had the privilege of serving with this congressman and i was inspired by his intelligence, preparation, dignity, generosity and forward thinking. he leaves behind a legacy that inspires not only those who served with him, but a generation of future leaders. i'm grateful for this vision and for the vision that he had,
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his integrity, his grace, his friendship and his mentorship. thank you, congressman -- congresswoman kaptur. ms. kaptur: thank you, congresswoman eddie bernice johnson, a long way from cleveland. for your great service and for sharing your memories of our beloved friend, congressman louis stokes. i know others want to enter material in the record in memory of congressman stokes and, mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the subject of this special order. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, granted. ms. kaptur: i also wanted to mention that congressman stokes 's beautiful wife, gennett, who was at his side through all his years of service, his daughters, angela, shelly, laurie, his son, chuck, and seven grandchildren, what an
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amazing family. the stokes family has made many contributions to ohio and to our country. but i think gennett and congressman stokes are proudest of the children and grandchildren that they've raised. they have represented the family well during this most difficult time. mr. speaker, several weeks ago, i would like to turn to a different subject if i might, in the remaining time, there was a special order that was given on speaker jim wright. and i was unable, because of duties in ohio, to join my remarks to those of his friends and colleagues here in the congress and i rise tonight to honor him for the leader and master of the legislative process that speaker jim wright of fort worth, texas, was. he approached life with an eager and courageous mission and a frue democratic heart --
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true democratic heart. he loved this house. he just loved it. he just basked in its glory and its power. and he had the keenness of intellect, the balance of knowledge, the intuition, the direction and the wisdom that comes from the long years of xperience that he had at the level of fort worth and then the state of texas and then obviously federally. but he was a veteran of world war ii and had been a pilot and received the distinguished flying cross. he was truly, truly a courageous hero for our country. and chose to serve then in elected life. what i will forever remember of him was his dignity and his strength. his personal ability to also for give those who sought to harm him and move on was an amazing trait. and i think it revealed some of what he was able to bring as a negotiator and a statesman to the work here.
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he was a passionate fighter for the people of our country, especially those of ordinary means, who might not have their voices heard. and when he got into a topic that he loved, he was absolutely unstoppable. he was a gifted orator. he spoke with all of his heart. and he elevated this house and the people who served in it. he loved congress. he referred to it as a heady place to be, where members of both political parties should cooperate to make america a world leader and to build and support a strong middle class. his early life growing up during the great depression had a permanent imprint on him. and he never forgot the common person. his service in the army during world war ii instilled in him a life of service and a dedication to help those less fortunate but also a passion for liberty.
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his legislative achievements were legion. he helped create the clean water act and the interstate highway system and he helped guarantee benefits for returning veterans. i remember what a master he was and i believe chaired the transportation committee and rose from there. and i can still see him making the case right at this podium here in the house for a modern transportation bill, clinking dimes in a large glass bowl to say that we have to pay our way forward here. and he understood what it took to build and maintain a great nation's prosperity. he was a terrific, terrific orator. in foreign affairs, speaker wright had a contribution that one could describe as profound. he was a peace maker. he visited the middle east and facilitated the meeting that led to the accord between israel and egypt in 1977. more than a decade later, he led a successful push for a
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compromise that would end the war between the sandinista government and the contras in nicaragua. his approach would lead to the end of u.s. military financing and the start of democratically held elections there. how many americans can say they've ever been involved in something of that magnitude? in his farewell speech before congress, speaker wright said, when vengeance becomes more desirable than vindication, harsh personal attacks on one another's motives, one another's character, drown out the quiet logic of serious debate on important issues. things that we ought to be involved ourselves in. surely that's unworthy of our institution. unworthy of our american political process. all of us in both parties must resolve to bring this period of mindless cannibalism to an end. there's been enough of it. speaker wright returned to fort worth where he donated his official papers to texas christian university's library
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and taught a t.c.u. course called congress and the presidents for more than 20 years. his intention to keep the class small was simply impossible. as his enrollment grew at an increasing rate every year. always treated me graciously. here i was from ohio, completely different part of the country, but i appreciate the fact that he assisted my efforts to seek a seat on the appropriations committee it. took me over a decade to arrive there -- committee. it took me over a decade to arrive there since no one from my part of ohio had ever served on it. he saw the exclusion and he helped me and i'm so grateful to him forever for that. and what i've been able to do in the country -- to help the country in that position. one of my favorite memories is something we had in common and that was the love of gardening and roses. and he was especially fond of a
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gray-purplish variety of roses that he had raised to perfection. he just loved life. speaker wright would often quote horris greely in saying, and i quote, and fame is a vapor, popularity an accident. riches take wings, those who cheer today may curse tomorrow. only one thing endures, character. speaker wright was certainly a man of great character and great talent and ability. and great accomplishment. we shall miss him greatly. may the hearts of his loved ones, his beloved wife, bettey, his four children, 15 grandchildren, 24 great-grandchildren, and his sister betty lee wright, be warmed by the light of his memory and the legacy of liberty he bestowed upon us all in the great -- and the great 'fection we shall always have for him in -- affection we shall always have for him in our hearts. may god bless the wright family. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentlewoman yields back the balance of her time. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the chair recognizes the gentleman from oklahoma, mr. russell, for 0 minutes. mr. russell dwhrverage thank you, mr. speaker -- mr. russell: thank you, mr. speaker. it is a psychological effect of life that when it comes to human beings, the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. period. end of story. psychologists who study human behavior agree that past behavior is a useful marker for to you fur -- for future behavior. but only under these certain specific conditions. for example, high frequency habitual behaviors are more predictive than infrequent behaviors. predictions work best if done over short periods of time,
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based upon these behaviors. the anticipated situation must be essentially the same as the past situation that activated the behavior in the first place. also, the behavior did not change by corrective or negative action or feedback. the person must remain essentially unchanged in their consistent behavior. the person must be fairly consistent in his or her behaviors over time. forensic psychologists that observe such behavior often use metaphor to warn of serious danger by referring to such individuals as, quote, a ticking time bomb, end quote. or as one, quote, caring -- carrying a hand grenade and it's just a matter of when the pin is pulled, end quote. what happens if we apply these sometime criteria to iran's behavior?
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the result is the same. psychologically there's no reason to expect future behavior change given iran's 36 years of bad behavior. the record of history since 1979 is clear with regard to iran's actions with the west and in particular the united states. for 30 of those 36 years, the united states has declared a iran as the most active -- declared iran as the most active state sponsor of terrorism in the world. for 36 years iran has brutally murdered more americans than any other terror group or state sponsor of terror. their clerics have declared fatwas on the united states, their leaders have dubbed us the great satan and have called israel a one-bomb state. with pledges to eliminate their existence. their brutal behavior earned them treatment and rightfully so as a pariah, shunned by
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global economy, diplomacy and withholding international goodwill. so what a fantastic time to accommodate a terrorist state and make a deal. some, such as secretary of state john kerry, dismiss all of iran's reticence as posturing rhetoric. how in god's name can we be so naive at the highest levels of our republic to believe it. how in good's name can we judge iran's actions worthy of fair treatment and goodwill? perhaps we should take the teachings of christ as a guide, when he stated, quote, every good tree bears fruit. a good tree cannot bear bad fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. therefore by their fruits, you will know them.
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christ's words,ing of, are true. iranian deeds speak louder than words. the problem is both word and deed are represent rehenceable, which should cause us even more alarm. don't believe me? here are the facts of iranian actions under this regime. 1979, hostage crisis. from the moment this regime came into being, the first act was to overrun the united states embassy in tehran, terrorizing 66 american hostages for 444 days, most of them, and forcing abandonment of our u.s. embassy an consulate. 1982 to 1992, lieutenant william buckley, the c.i.a. station chief is tortured and brutally murder in the third degreered. david anderson a reporter of
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great renown was captured and held for seven years. american university president david dodd was capture and held for a year. 1983, the u.s. embassy in bay rut is bombed, murdering 63, 17 of them americans. the entire c.i.a. middle east contingent is reportedly murdered. the entire operation was directed by hezbollah and financed by iran. october 23, the united states marine barracks in beirut was destroyed by the largest nonnuclear explosion detonated on earth by the hand of an iranian terrorist. 241 united states marines are slaughtered and 100 are wounded. during the same attack, the french baraks are destroyed by another iranian terrorist bomb that murders 58 french paratroopers. december 12, 1983, the u.s. embassy in kuwait was bombed by iranian terrorists from iranian
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backed hezbollah, murdering five and wounded 86. 17 members of the dawa are captured and arrested in connection. iranian sponsored terrorist acts then are perpetrated for years to come to try to negotiate the release. 1984, september 20. united states embassy annex in beirut is destroys by iranian banked hezbollah terrorists. 1985. june 14. transworld airlines flight is hijacked. a united states navy diver is forced to neil in front of an open air -- to kneel in front of an open aircraft door, shot in the back of the head and dumped on the tarmac. the remaining hostages are released following terrorist releases from prisons in israel
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and lebanon. 1989, the secretary general of the kurdish democratic party of iran was assassinated by iranian operatives along with two associated in vienna where he was secretly meeting with envoys ent by then iranian president. 1991, august 8, the assassination of the last iranian prime minister prior to the iranian revolution by iranian operatives. in a botched attempt on his life a paris suburb in 1980, his assailants murdered a french policeman and female neighbor. 1992 march 17. the israeli embassy bombing in buenos aires, argentina. they perpetrated a suicide bomb attack on the embassy in argentina which killed 29 people and wounded 242 others, the
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great majority of which were civilian bystanders in the vicinity of the embassy. 17th of september, 1992 kurdish leader dr. mohammed sayid and three other iranian kurds were assassinated at the mikonos cafe in berlin. german courts linked the iranian government and minister of intelligence to the assassination. 1994, july 18. iran was directly responsible for the argentinian israeli mutual association jewish community center bombing in buenos aires, argentina, which murdered 85 and wounded 300. the amia attack remains the deadly attack -- deadliest terrorist attack in argentina's history. ninegentine court declared
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people fugitives from justice in their country for their role in the bombing. the iranian backed branch of hezbollah detonated a massive bomb in front of khobar towers a u.s. military housing complex in saudi arabia. the terrorist attack murdered 19 ouricans and wounded 372 of service men and women. the attackers detonated a parked truck laid within the equivalent of between 3,000 and 8,000 pounds of explosives in the khobar towers parking lot. it sheared the face off an eight story structured -- structure hat housed u.s. personnel. iran undermined u.s. operations by supplying weapons, its own advisors and iranian proxy
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advisors to multiple resident group, both sunni and shia, which targeted coalition forces. for the u.s., concern revolved around iran's role in arming and assisting the shiite militias. in iraq, the top kill for the u.s. troops were i.e.d.'s or imp provised explosive devices, primarily supplied by iran. in total, iranian support led to the death of thousands of u.s. soldiers and others in iraq. in 2010, the united states ambassador to iraq james jeffries stated, quote, up to a quarter, 1,200 of the american casualties in some of the more horrific incidents in which americans were kidnapped can be traced without doubt to these iranian groups, end quote. i should also personally -- personally note that many were my friends. and wull for -- and all were my brothers and sisters as fellow
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warriors. 2006 to 2015, iranian support for the taliban against the united states troops in afghanistan has been ongoing since at least 2006. according to iran -- according o a rand report thork iran has usually backed other groups opposed to the taliban, its enemyity led toyota provide measured support to the taliban. according to the treasury department, since at least 2006, iran has arranged frequent shipments of small arms and associated am mission, rocket propelled grenades, mortar rounds and probably manned portable defense systems to the taliban. a member of my own staff left limbs in afghanistan by these devices. through material support, the report state well, believe iran is seeking to inflict casualties
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on u.s. and nato forces. in 2010, multiple media sources reported iran as, quote, paying taliban fighters $1,000 for each u.s. soldier they kill in afghanistan. this is currently. over a six-month period in 2010, one, quote, taliban treasurer claimed to have collected more than $77,000 from an iranian form in kabul as payment for killing americans. 2011. october. u.s. authorities thwarted a terrorist plot in this town, washington, d.c., which included the assassination of saudi arabiaian ambassador to the united states and subsequent bomb attacks on saudi and israeli imbasscies. u.s. attorney general eric holder stated the plot was directed and approved by elements of the iranian government and spefblingly senior members of the kudz force in this town.
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the two individuals charged were a 56-year-old naturalized u.s. citizen holding both iranian and u.s. passports, and an aran-based member of aon -- of iran's kud force. they were arrested on september 29, 2011 -- one was arrested on september 29, 2011, the other remains at large. azerbaijan. u.s. officials were among those targeted for assassination by member os they have islamic revolutionary yard guard corps of iran. they were arrested in azehr buy january. according to "the washington post," united states and middle eastern officials see the attempts as part of a broader ampaign by iran-linked occupants to kill foreign diplomats in seven countries over a span of 14 months, end quote.
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how right they were. 13 to 14 february, new delhi, india. e wife of the new american atai -- attache and her driver were wounded. police determined the attackers were member os they have iranian guard corps. another device was found on an israeli diplomat's car. three iranian men detonated a cache of explosives in bangkok, thailand. they were intended to be used to assassinate israeli diplomats. a multinational investigation has produced the clearest evidence yet that iran was involved in all three plots. 18 july. a suicide bomber destroyed an israeli tour bus in bulgaria, murdering the bus driver and five israelis and wounding more than 30 others.
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an investigation in 2012, the bulgarian government found that iran and its proxy, hezbollah, were responsible for the attack. behavior. behavior. 36 consistent years. but now, president obama wants to negotiate with terrorists to prevent war. mr. speaker, we are not the attackers here. threat of war only comes from the united states when we are bullied, cajoled, attacked or threatened. the president and secretaries kerry, lew and moe these want us to show good will for bad behavior. the american people are against it as evidenced by the strong opposition of the majority of the americans who rightly debuse the -- deduce the deal would allow nuclear capacity for iran and allows a legal path to weapons of mass destruction.
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the president often makes political speeches demanding we keep dangerous firearms out of the hands of those with psychological problems. yet under identical behavioral criteria, he would give nuclear capacity to iran. while public multiple victim shootings are horrific, imagine an iran a nuclear capacity. given iran's prolific use of every form of weaponry and exportive terror, are our louders so nay eve to think that iran's behavior would be -- would be any better than putting a weapon in the hands of a psychologically inconsistent eand dangerous individual? paths behavior is the best bredictor of future behavior. any psychologist or criminologist will tell you this. yet the president is selling us on the deluded hope that this is somehow the right and only path
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to take. nonsense. no alternative, you say. how can that be? our own administration does not even realize that iran's interpretation of this very deal and ours are separated by a fairly problematic gulf. in the last month, even the last few days, iran's president rahani and his foreign ministry have made public statements that declare the following regarding this good deal. according to iran and its statements from its leaders, here's what they think they've agreed to. iran can pursue the development of missiles without restriction. they can violate u.n. resolutions without violating the agreement. iran says it's not a treaty but binding. iran can violate the u.n. security council resolution without violating the jcpoa or the agreement. iran intends to violate the united nations security council
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resolution restrictions on weapon sales and imports. in fact, they're negotiating with russia for the sale of s.s. 300 and 400 missiles. and iran also believes that not nly has it not agreed to inspect itself it will refuse to allow anyone else to inspect it. these are from their own statements in recent days. iran's public statement december claire, mr. speaker, that all sanctions will be lifted. under iran's interpretation and even in the stated language of the agreement this includes those such as the islamic revolutionary guard corps. they're in the agroment. they're listed. and the kudz force, the same organization that we just itemized all these terrorist acts, both of these groups, two of the most reprehensible terrorist organizations in the world are in this agreement were sanctions to be lifted.
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read them, annex two sanctions list. i have. this flies in the face of our president's own statements and reassurances. under secretary of -- undersecretary of treasury zubin assures us sanctions on these organizations will be maintained. secretary lew goes further stating that we will not be providing sanctions releaf to any of these lines of activity and we will not be delisting from sanctions the islamic revolutionary guard corps or any of their sub sid years senior officials. then why are they in the deal? . they believe that they will be lifted. terrorists. so the money, numerous organizations that i've had to fight on battlefields now we will reward their bad behavior with goodwill. the islamic revolutionary guard
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corps and the quds force are both listed in this agreement and have sanctions against them lifted according to interpretations of its terms. what a great deal. there's none better. this is the best we can do. president hassan rouhani declared last month, and i quote, after the agreement is implemented, the economic sanctions will be immediately removed, meaning financial banking, insurance, transportation, petro chemical sanctions, all economic sanctions will be removed. congratulations, mr. president. on that good deal and that goodwill. mr. speaker, our nation is in grave danger. we are trusting a psychologically fanatical and terrorist state with 36 consistent years of bad behavior to now behave well. perhaps the only thing missing to shore up the president and secretary kerry's reassurances is perhaps an airplane on the
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tarmac with an open door, with our united states leader waving a document in his hands declaring peace in our time. the power of this nation only rests with the consent of the people. that is where the congress, both parties, this august body, comes in. but now our president, our president even wants to find a political way to strip the from a vote by their duly elected representatives to avoid the optics of an opposition. i guess he and president rouhani of iran do have something very much in common after all. not allowing a vote in their representative legislative bodies -- respective legislative bodies. one would expect from thank from a fanatical unstable dictatorship but not in the united states of america.
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mr. speaker, the president is outside his constitutional authority. no other president in the history of our nation has ever cobbled together sanctions provicks -- sanctions provisions meant to provide a de facto treaty with a foreign rogue state to give them what the sanctions were intended to deny. the president has acted without the consent of the people. therefore, mr. speaker, the people, through their duly elected representatives, will now act without consent of the president. article 1, section 8, united states constitution, a document i've defended since i was 18, states that the power to regulate commerce with foreign nations rests in the congress of these united states. article 2, section 2, states that the president can only make a binding treaty with a foreign nation upon 2/3 consent with the senate.
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mr. speaker, the president states that this is not a treaty. we agree. and therefore constitutionally we are not bound to abide by it. neither are the states. the supremacy clause does not apply here. it is not a treaty. not having the affect of treaty law, the states are free to act and today they are. and will. and we will. i call upon my colleagues, people that have taken an oath to support and defend this republic, to stand with me. we will declare the lifting of sanctions of terrorists as laid out in the agreement as null and void. it is illegal under past u.s. sanctions law. we will uphold the united states sanctions law against executive fiat action. we will make explicit the sense
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of congress and upcoming state actions both legally and economically. we will prevent the lifting of sanctions on scores of those listed in the agreement, thereby violating section 37 of annex two of the iran deal. we will send a strong message to iran that the power of this republic does not rest with its president, it rests by the consent of the people. we are bound to uphold that trust as our constitutional duty. mr. speaker, i also call upon americans to stand with me. pound the white house with calls and emails. support state legislative actions and sanctions. support your representatives, both state and assembly, and your u.s. representatives in this fight. we ask the people to support us in this fight. not shoot us in the back
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regardless of political party, with anger and cynicism, leveling blame on those who oppose this deal rather than on the one who has created it. then, if we do this, what will the future look like? it will look like an iran contained, not an iran accommodated. it will look like a nation that led rather than cowered. it will have a united states hat stands firm when iran, a signatory to the nuclear nonproliferation traity, -- treaty, does, if they ever do decide to go rogue, will be like north korea when a previous administration assured us that if we reached out to them with the iaea and lifting of sanctions and easing, that they would come around. they abandoned it, we should have known it, their bad
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behavior was consistent, that future was predictable, they have nuclear weapons and we knew it. we said we could trust them in a similar agreement. but our country will stand for free people and free economies on this globe. it is what we do. and if we fail in that task, who will take our place? how we fight today determines how we shape tomorrow. accommodating terrorists and nations with 36 consistent years of bad behavior is not the best deal we have. if iran, like libya, displays good behavior first, then we will have a basis for discussion and follow-on goodwill, we which -- which we saw in that case. until then, the power of the
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republic rests with its people, not with its executive. let us never waver from that position. as long as we treasure this republic and its constitution, this will defend -- we'll defend. mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. under the speaker's announced policy of january 6, 2015, the chair recognizes the gentleman from maryland, mr. hoyer, until 10:00 p.m. mr. hoyer: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend. mr. speaker, i rise regretting that i was unable to be here when marcy capture, the gentlewoman from ohio, was talking about representative louis stokes. congressman stokes and i were
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very good friends. i had the opportunity to serve with him for many years. and i wanted to take this time, mr. speaker, to thank ms. kaptur for leading the special order. on august 18 we learned of the pass of our friend, former representative louis stokes. he was a reluctant candidate, mr. speaker, who went on to serve his constituents for three decades. i've had the honor of serving here for 34 years. but when i first came here, of course i thought louis stokes had been here forever. i don't really think i've been here forever. but he was a friend to all, respected by his colleagues on both sides of the aisle. and beloved of his constituents. for three decades he served here and left a lasting imprint
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on his state, our nation and indeed the world. louis stokes was the first african-american to represent ohio and the first to chair the permanent select committee on intelligence. he was chairman as well of the black caucus and a tireless campaigner for civil rights and equality. moreover, he was also the first african-american to serve on the appropriations committee, are we and i were colleagues. i sat just two chairs from him. for almost a decade. along with ms. kaptur for a number of years. and he chaired the appropriations subcommittee for veterans affairs and housing and urban development. that chairmanship reflected representative stokes' longstanding mission to address the unmet needs of millions of americans living in inner city neighborhoods like many of those in cleveland who sent him to congress.
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having been ratesed in a housing project himself, along with his brother, former cleveland mayor, carl stokes, he made it his mission to ensure that congress was paying attention to the important issues of affordable housing, access to jobs, health care delivery and crime prevention. as a veteran, representative stokes never wavered from his determination to make certain that congress was meeting its responsibility to those who had served our nation in uniform. i was saddened to learn of his passing. in his 90 years, representative stokes lived a very rich and full life. and he was full of life and a deep and abiding love for his family, this house, the state and nation that he served so
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ably. louis stokes was a gentleman. and a gentle man. he was a giant in integrity and in intellect. committed to common sense, courage and seeking the right answers for his people, for his state and for his country. it is testament to him that his four children all followed him into careers that help better their communities and our country. one is an administrator at howard university, another is a well represented journalist and news anchor in new york. the third as a cleveland municipal court judge. and the fourth as an editor and public affairs director for a television station in droith -- detroit. he was extraordinarily proud of his children, and of his
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grandchildren. they, like all of us in this house who served with him, mr. speaker, were and are extraordinarily proud of congressman louis stokes. i join in extending my condolences to them, to their mother, representative stokes' wife of 55 years, angela, and to the seven grandchildren that representative stokes so cherished. the house of representatives was made a better body by having louis stokes serve in this hall. and a grateful nation thanks him and his family for sharing his life with all of us who had the honor and privilege and joy serving by his side in this revered house of the people.
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that he loved and who loved him. and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. does the gentleman have a motion? mr. hoyer: i do. mr. speaker, i move the house do now adjourn. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on the motion to adjourn -- adjourn. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly, the house stands adjourned until 10:00 a.m. tomorrow for morning hour deba
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>> rachel all is well joins us reporting on the iran nuclear agreement. let's go to what mitch mcconnell says. they would take this up with members in their seats. not clear 100 senators are going to listen to senator mcconnell when he made that request for the august recess. appears he only wanted them in their seats for the beginning of the debate.
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this is something that almost never happens where you have 100 senators give their speeches. can't think of a time where that has happened in recent memory. >> that democrats are on the verge of blocking iran's veto, talking about their ability to a final vote on the disapproval resolution. what are you hearing? >> we have 42 votes in favor of the deal. it is not clear if there is enough support to filibuster the deal which requires 41 senators. three senators are part of the deal. theytold me this evening are undecided on the issue. we know that harry reid and deputy durbin will be whipping them on the subject.
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those three senators, we will be facing a lot of pressure to support the filibuster. the argument is going to be is if you support the nuclear do you should filibuster. for the republican-controlled even though the deal will be implemented, it would send a confusing message to foreign countries and financial institutions for the long-term viability of the deal. rules committee is taking up the debate in the house. what do we know of the schedule? >> no amendments will be offered. there will be 11 hours of floor debate with debate dine divided amongst several committees, financial services, foreign
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affairs. >> among the first words we heard were the disapproval , talking about them on the house floor earlier tuesday. what is his point? doesn'tgues the deal begin to have the 60 day clock until they have received all indexes to the enron accord. -- having toency deal with resolving issues. thewhite house says that iran clock began on july 19 when it transmitted all of the indexes and deals to congress which means the deadline would be september 17. the validity of
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what he is saying, whether you consider that the side deal under the terms of the iran review act, i don't think his effort is going to gain traction. about theb corker resolution. he thought the best way for lawmakers to register the disapproval of not getting the agreement would be to vote down the iran deal and not to raise other issues. he doesn't consider it an issue. you never know. >> the summe white house is wasting no time with their disapproval. what else can we expect?
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>> so far we have had not heard of any last-minute plans by officials. that could still happen. these kinds of things can be last-minute. i would not be surprised if it happens because of how close the filibuster is looking. >> rachel all's walled, national security reporter. follow her reporting on twitter. thank you for the update. up, the house rules committee considers the iran nuclear deal disapproval legislation. on therry reid importance of the iran nuclear deal. after that, senator john mccain
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on why he opposes the agreement. later, remarks by dick cheney on what he describes as failures of the iran nuclear deal. house takes up the iran nuclear agreement disapproval resolution with the vote coming as early as friday. the house rules committee considered how they will debate this legislation. it allows for 11 hours of debate divided between five committees. they each get two hours on the floor. the house foreign affairs committee gets three it. -- gets three. mr. sessions: good afternoon. the rules committee will come to order. welcome back from our august work period. it's exciting to see each of us together as we gather back, virginia foxx was delighted, she even smiled at me, and that's -- used to be a certain thing, now
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it's a rare day. virginia fox w delighted. she even smiled at me, louise, that used to be a certain thing and now it is a rare die. and there is a virginia smile. >> we check with each other. >> i hope everybody had a chance to be with their families and constituent and also get back to enjoying the 95 degrees in rochester, in new york. one of the issues that i heard a lot about during the break back in dallas was the issue that today is before the rules committee and that is hjres 64 which would disapprove of this administration's deal with iran on the nuclear weapons. the american people i believe are looking for congress to explain what we're going to do and the actions that would take place. there are a lot of questions that not only surround this but there are questions about our
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future. i think hj 64 provides our best opportunity to do exactly that. to dissect it, to look at it, and certainly today we'll have a number of witnesses who will be able to provide expert testimony to that end. for the last few years, the administration has been dead set on cutting a deal with the iranians regarding its nuclear program. i don't think that is any secret. and in the last few months, however, it has been become clear that the administration was interested in, i think, cutting any good deal with the iranians. because the administration negotiated from position of wackness, i think -- weakness, i think it gives iran everything it wanted and leaves the american people wondering what we got in return. it cut a deal. it gives iran permanent sanctions relief for temporary agreements that merely keeps iran from building a nuclear bomb in the near term. it is now up to congress to stop this deal so that the iranian
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regime does not have access to the nearly $150 billion it would use to continue to fund terrorist organizations that destabilize the middle east and the world, including the united states of america. this deal pardons iran's previous actions, it encouraged iran to continue to undermine our allies and it turns iran from a nuclear pariah into a nuclear partner. this week congress will have an opportunity to completely review this deal with information that has provided to us and it's foremost congressional expert on the deal is the gentleman who is with us today, congressman ed royce. chairman royce has led over 30 hearings and briefings on this deal. i look forward to his insight and i also know that we have two other important witnesses that represent the democratic party. mr. levin with the ways and means committee and miss waters,
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ranking member of the financial services committee. i'm aware that this is a big deal. this committee is prepared to ask tough questions, this committee is prepared to ask serious and long-range questions about the future of this deal and to understand more about what we're trying to accomplish here today. before we defer to our first panel that will include not only mr. levin, but also miss waters and i would ask they feel free to come join the table at any point they choose to. i would defer to my colleague and dear friend, the gentlewoman from rochester, new york. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i appreciate that time. i want to welcome the witnesses as well, look forward to hearing what they have to say. i do need to correct one thing i believe that you mentioned. that this was an agreement between the president of the united states and iran.
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this is a agreement between the security council of the united nations and iran. it was negotiated by five countries plus one, as we all know. a security council has already voted 15-0 on this plan. and i'm assuming that that is the controlling vote. but in any case, we know that if everything holds as it said it was going to hold in the senate, that this is dead on arrival, but we will go on with the game. we're used to that. we spent, what, 57 votes on trying to hill health care. but anyway, thank you for yielding me the time. the joint comprehensive plan of action with iran has been hailed as, quote, remarkable, end quote, by retired army general colin powell, that i think all of us admire. the former chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, obviously knowing everything you need to know about military operations, and also the former secretary of
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state for president george w. bush. it has a broad and firm support of the international community. even the members of israel security community have come out in support of this unprecedented comprehensive and enforceable agreement. even so, opponents decried as weak, riddled with loopholes and inadequate. and to those people, i ask what is the alternative? the agreement has flaws, perhaps, but it is my firm belief without it we'll be on a ever quick path to nuclear armed iran which is unacceptable to all of us. this agreement is a step toward peace, toward diplomacy, toward unifying the international community. on a negotiation partners, green bay, china, russia, germany and france and along with the rest of the world are looking for the congress of the united states not to embarrass itself and i
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urge my colleagues to support it. thank you very much and i yield back the balance of my time. >> ms. slaughter, thank you very much. i want to welcome not only miss waters but mr. levin and young chairman of the committee, mr. royce for taking time to be with us today. obviously, without objection, anything in writing will be entered into the record. you know that you're here to provide expert testimony. you recognize that this is a very serious issue and i appreciate each one of you being here today. mr. chairman, you're recognized. >> thank you chairman sessions and thank you ranking member, slaughter. >> that microphone on it. >> i guess i would just start, mr. chairman, with the observation that the premise there that the controlling vote would be the security council vote, which miss slaughter raised, sort of goes against the very intention of the house and
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senate in passing legislation in the first place. that would give congress a vote on this. and this really raised the question, the timing, of going to the security council before we received the briefing on the agreement itself. and before the people's representatives in the house and senate, even had an opportunity to be recorded on this. the fact that the assertion would make -- be made that the controlling vote would be the security council of the united nations rather than congress after congress had passed legislation and after that legislation was signed by the president of the united states, to have our in put. and part of that was for us to have the responsibility to look into this agreement before we made an informed decision upon whether or not it was in the interest of the united states. now we've held some 30 hearings in the foreign affairs
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committee, and briefings, and i just want to share with the members here, with the chairman and ranking member, that we very much appreciate the committee on rules meeting to consider this house joint resolution 64. what this resolution would do, it is a resolution of disapproval, that i introduced, that would prevent a flawed nuclear agreement with iran from being implemented. as you know, this legislation is possible because of the vote we made here in the house and the senate on the iran nuclear agreement review act that overwhelmingly past. the vote was 400-25. it was again, signed into law by the president. and that legislation established a process for congress to review the final nuclear agreement with iran and then take and up or down-vote on the merits. and in review we have. so many of you have had the opportunity to see some of the coverage of the committee
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hearings. but we've conducted that review in a bipartisan way. ranking member engel has been a tireless partner in this. the bipartisan way in which the committee has approached this issue wouldn't surprise mr. collins or judge hastings. we've kept to our collaborate roots since the members left the committee. and while we strive to present a united front to the world, we can't always agree. mr. chairman, i don't relish bringing this resolution to the floor. we all wanted these negotiations to succeed. but i'm afraid that this agreement not only comes up short, it is fatally flawed. and, indeed, it is dangerous. a few key concerns we've heard from the experts in front of our committee. first, iran is not required to dismantle key bomb-making technology. second, iran is permitted a vast
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enrichment capacity, reversing decades of bipartisan nonproliferation policy that never imagined endorsing this type of nuclear infrastructure for any country, never mind a country like iran. and iran is allowed to continue its research and development to gain an industrial scale nuclear program once this agreement begins to expire in as little as ten years. ten years is a flash in time. and then the iranian obligations start to unwind. i just don't see that as a formula for a safer, more secure region. while members of congress insisted on anywhere, anytime inspections, iran has agreed to something they call managed access. so instead after louing international inspectors, into suspicious sites in 24 hours, it
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will take 24 days, but not on the military bases. because, worse yet, there have been revelations in recent days but a side agreement between iran and the nuclear watch dog in the united nations. this sets the conditions in which a key iranian military site suspected of nuclear bomb work will be explored. when i say suspected of nuclear bomb work, the director of the iaea tells me there is a thousand pages of documents they have on the bomb work that was done there. and while the details have been kept from congress directly, it is reported that instead of international inspectors doing the international inspecting, we're going to have iranians themselves take the inspection lead. iran has cheated on every agreement they have signed to date. why are we trusting them to self police? and the deal guts the sanctions
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web that is putting intense pressure on iran. all economic and energy sanctions disappear. billions will be made available to iran to pursue the terrorism. and when i say iran, remember the way it is set up there where the rigc controlling many of the countries, this is not like a normal business arrangement in a company. when these companies were nationalized basically by the government, they were turned over to the irgc so these elements are strengthened in this deal. if we have $100 billion out of escrow and it goes into those accounts, this isn't a free functioning economy. no, the irgc will control that money and decide what they spend it on and we've already seen a little bit of their pronouncements about what is important to them.
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getting to hezbollah. the types of systems, gps systems, that will allow hezbollah to fire some 80,000 plus rockets and missiles that the irgc has supplied hezbollah. getting to hamas, the weapons to replace those that have already been fired, rebuilding the tunnels that eliot engel and i have been in, that is another commitment apparently that the irgc is making. so when we put that down payment in their hands, that is where the down payment goes. and as iran will be reconnected to the global economy, this is going to jump start those businesses that the irgc runs over there. so to our dismay, in addition, iran won a late concession to remove international constrictions on its ballistic missile program and on conventional arms, imperilling the security of the region.
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and frankly when we talk about the removal on ballistic missile programs, we have to remember the words of the ayatollah, it is the responsibility of every military man to figure out in iran huh to help mass produce icbm's. i don't think he's talking about a space program with that comment. so mr. chairman, and the reason i don't think it is because he follows it up with death to america. that is why i think it. that his line of thought is one which is a national security threat to the united states. chairman, those are a few of the reasons i'm opposed to the agreement. i appreciate the fact that the leadership and both parties recognize the gravity of the vote we'll have this week and i'd ask the rule allow as much time as possible for debate so as many possibles as possible can have their voices heard on this historic agreement. and that this be considered under a closed rule so we can have the straight up or down
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vote as envisioned by the iran nuclear agreement act passed last spring. whatever your view on this agreement, i think we can all agree that we face a very difficult and gravely threatening challenge from the iranian regime. this is a regime, again, that chants on a weekly basis, death to america, death to israel, and frankly they mean it. the region is a mess and congress has a role to play. and feel working with my colleagues and friend eliot engel that we've done a good job vetting this agreement and now members can come to their own conclusions as to whether this improves our national security. i feel it doesn't. but the house will come to its collective decision as it should. and i appreciate your time and i look forward to your questions. >> mr. chairman, thank you very much. i note that both of our witnesses that appear first from financial services and ways and means, i believe are in support
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of the administration's side, would that be correct? then i will make you make -- i will allow you the opportunity to decide which of you would present first, knowing that you both have -- then the gentleman, mr. levin, would prevent on behalf of the ways an means, the gentleman is recognized. >> and both of you will be recognized, right? >> i'm talking about you being recognized first and then we'll recognize miss waters. thank you very much, gentleman. >> thank you. once again, it ises a pleasure to be here and hello to everybody. after a few -- more than a few weeks away. i had a chance before we left, it seems so long ago, to speak out on this and to expression my position. since then, like all of you, we've gone home. we've talked to -- vastly and intensely and intensively with our constituents and others. i think that has been a
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productive process. as i understand it, you're going to allow many, many hours of debate. which i think is a very wise choice. so let me not go into a lot of detail. they'll be many hours of debate. and i'll participate in them. i thought instead i would refer to the statements of two people. my hope is that my reference to them and your reference to them might spark some kind of bipartisanship in this institution on this issue. i would first like to refer, as mentioned by louise slaughter, the statements -- it was the testimony on sunday of colin powell. he's the former secretary of state. we know his illustrious career. and here is what he said.
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and i quote, i think this is a good deal. i've studied very carefully the outline of the deal and what's in that deal and i've also carefully looked at the opposition to the deal and in my position after balancing these two sets of information is that it is a pretty good deal. now, i know there are objections to it but here is why i think it is a good deal. one of the great concerns that the pop position has that we're leaving open a lane for the iranians to go back to creating a nuclear weapon in ten or 15 years. they are for getting the reality that they've been a superhighway for the last ten years to create a nuclear weapon or a nuclear weapons program with no speed limit. and then he referred to the reduction in the centrifuges and in the stockpile, a very
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dramatic reduction. and then he goes on to say, and again i quote, and so we have stopped this highway race that they were going down. and i think that's very important. now, will they comply with it? will they actually do all of this? will they get nothing until they show compliance? and that is the important part of this, as he said though. get nothing until they show compliance. well the other criticism of this deal, and i continue quoting colin powell, has to do with behavior changes. why didn't we ask for it. it wasn't enough to just try to slow them down on the nuclear front or stop their ability to get a nuclear weapon. it is, should we also put in this deal, having them stop the funding of hamas, stopping the funding of hezbollah, stopping the backing of assad in syria. and i interject here.
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i think we all deeply feel the importance of that. and here is how he continued. i think all of these are important objectives. and they should not be set aside because of this deal. we have to keep pushing on the bad behavior that the iranians show constantly throughout the world. but this deal specifically had to deal with the thing that was most concerning to the world, most dangerous to the world, and that was the nuclear program which could produce a weapon in a very short period of time. that has been thrown into a detour. and then he continues. and i'm reminded of what my former boss ronald reagan used to say when he talked to the soviets. trust, but verify. with respect to the iranians, it's don't trust, never trust, and always verify. and i think a very vigorous
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verification program has been put in place with the iaea and other international organizations. and then he continued. and so even if we were going to kill this deal, which is not going to happen, it is going to take effect any way because all of these other countries that were in it with us are going to move forward. the u.n. is going to move forward. and 100 nations have already agreed to this deal thinking it's a good deal and they're all going to move forward. we're going to be standing in the sidelines. and so he finished, at least i finish quoting this. now, people will say, no can trust them. i don't trust them. i say we have a deal. let's see how they implement the deal. they don't implement it. bail out. none of our options are going. none of our options are going. but this is something we ought to pursue and try to make it
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happen under the terms under which the deal was reached. secondly, i would like to quote from prince go craft. i had a chance now six weeks ago to talk to him about this. he was, as we know, the national security adviser to jer ald ford and george h.w. bush. and i quote briefly from his op ed. congress faces a momentous decision regarding u.s. policy toward the middle east. the coming vote on the nuclear deal between p5+1, iran, will show the world whether the united states has the will and sense of responsibility to help stabilize the middle east or whether it will contribute to further turmoil, including the possible spread of nuclear weapons. in my view, the jcpoa meets the
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key objective shared by recent administrations of both parties that iran limit itself to a strictly civilian nuclear program with unprecedented verification and the monitoring by the iaea and the u.n. security council. if the u.s. could have handed iran a take it or leave it agreement, the terms doubtless would have been more onerous on iran. but negotiated agreements are the only ones that get signed in the times of peace are compromised by definition. it is where president reagan did with the soviet union on arms control and it is what president nixon did with china and it is the case with specific agreements with the soviet union and china. we'll continue to have significant differences with iran on important issues, including human rights, support for terrorist groups, and meddling in the internal affairs
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of neighbors. we must never tire of working to persuade iran to change its behavior on these issues and countering it where necessary. and then i conclude with this. there is no credible alternative for congress to prevent u.s. participation in the nuclear deal. if we walk away, we walk away alone. the world's leading powers work together effectively because of u.s. leadership. to turn our back on this accomplishment would be an abdication of the united states unique role and responsibility, incurring justified dismay among our allies and friends. we would lose all leverage over iran's nuclear activities. so let me just close -- you know, i went back and looked at
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the statements of senator vandenberg, who came from michigan, who talked about the importance of bipartisanship at the water's edge. i think he maybe was the first to say that. i think we all need to, as we proceed in this debate, to keep that very much in mind. the feelings are deep. mine are very deep, going back from when i was perhaps an infant. it was a matter of deep concern in our family regarding the establishment of a homeland, but for the jewish people in israel. we've all looked at this in a very, very diligent way. and mr. chairman, and ranking member, i hope you will allow
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long debate. i hope the debate may keep in mind when i said at the beginning, it is important, i think, to see if we can somehow, and maybe we'll do it afterwards, re-establish the bipartisanship on these key issues which has been a hallmark of this institution for a long time. thank you very much. >> mr. levin, thank you very much. we'll now move to financial services angle and we would recognize the gentle woman from los angeles. >> thank you, mr. chairman. ranking member, slaughter and other members of the committee, thank you for allowing me to testify before you on hj-64, a resolution. this approving the joint comprehensive plan of action. mr. chairman and members, when i had a discussion with my staff about the rules committee
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meeting today, they basically said, well you know, it is not necessary to go. and they said that even talk with some of the staff people of the rules committee, who said, well you know, this is perfunctory, it is not really necessary. it is going to be a closed rule. there are no amendments. but i rushed from the airplane coming in from los angeles today to be at this rules committee, despite the fact that i guess it is known that it is -- will be a closed rule, because i want to be recorded in history. that i took every opportunity to make my voice heard on this defining issue. this is a defining issue for the world, not just for the united states of america. i want it to be known that i
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believe that the five plus one, who came together on this joint agreement is extraordinary. to have china and russia at the table, talking about averting a nuclear war is extremely important. and not only do i want to be recorded in history, at every opportunity, i want to share with you and all of my colleagues not only how i feel, but what i have learned as this debate has taken place around this country and in my district. and so i'm here today to testify before you on hj-64, this resolution disapproving the joint comprehensive plan of action, the nuclear deal reached between iran and six world
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powers, that has support of nuclear experts, military personnel, atomic energy experts and the unanimous support of the national security council which voted 15-0 in favor of the deal. i very much believe this deal is in the best interest of the united states and international security because it stands up very well as a barrier to proliferation for at least 15 years and it establishes an in trucive inspections regime to ensure that iran's program remains heavily monitored and exclusively peaceful. i also believe it was the best agreement that could have been reach reached. the argument from prime minister benjamin netanyahu and the house republican leadership supporting this resolution, that a better deal is possible ignores their
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own views of the iranian regime. these critics describe the regime as a whollyin transgent one, bent on regional domination and unwilling to show any accommodation. given this depiction, what basis do they have for saying that somehow iran could have been persuaded to concede even more than they did. the other alternative, which i believe many of the agreements critics prefer, is an attack on iran, led by our country. the first thing that must be said about this is that every expert agrees that short of an american occupation of iran, nothing could prevent an iranian nuclear capacity. the war on iraq that president bush initiated was a single biggest disaster any american president ever caused. war with iran would be far
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worse. mr. chairman and members, i chaired a committee of the house opposing the war in iraq. and as we look back and reflect on the loss of life over 1,000 american soldiers and the costs of that war, i think we can all agree, it was a mistake. if we fail to understand the significance and the importance of this agreement, and we in any way attempt to walk away, and isolate ourselves, it would be perhaps the biggest mistake this country has ever made. without this deal, we would very quickly face the unparallel choice between allowing iranians to continue its march toward a nuclear capability, or using military force to temporarily stop it. let's be clear about one thing.
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if congress rejects this deal, it will not lead to a better one. if the united states walks away, we walk away alone. the harsh international sanctions against iran that have been in place for over a decade were able to get iran to the negotiating table but economic sanctions alone have not prevented iran from continuing to pursue a nuclear capability. in fact, history suggests that continued economic pressure will not force iran to agree to everything we might want, despite harsh sanctions and isolation, north korea still became a nuclear weapons state, crippling sanctions on iraq still did not lead to sadam relenting to u.s. demand, even under the threat of invasion. there is no guarantee that even powerful sanctions an the threat of ford will lead iran to
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eliminate all aspects of its nuclear program and plenty of reason to think that perhaps it will not. instead, the united states will have broken from its european allies. the necessary international support for iran related sanctions will likely erode. iran would be able to rapidly expand its capacity to produce bomb-grade materials and we would lose out on securing enhanced inspections needed to detect a clandestine weapons effort. in other words, the risk of a nuclear armed iran would significantly increase. this deal deserves support because it is a well built agreement that has iran conceding that they will not pursue nuclear weapons, it is significantly constraining iranian nuclear efforts for more than 15 years and gives nuclear inspectors unprecedented access. iran must prove that its nuclear
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program is peaceful. if it fails to do so with this deal, the united states will have all of the tools it does now have in the future. and so, if i can just wrap this up by again reiterating to all of you, that we all have an opportunity to be a part of a significant, important agreement. we all have an opportunity to be recorded in history, the way i think we would like to be recorded. that we joined hands in an effort to bring about peace. i am more than optimistic that we can do this. i'm more than optimistic that we can begin to rely on the young people in iran, many of whom
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have demonstrated that they too want peace, and that the ayatollah and others who have sent a different kind of message around the world, consistently, will not be in control forever. and it is up to us to have a vision for this possibility. and i want to be recorded that way. and i thank you for allowing me to be here at the rules committee today to be able to say one more time that i support this agreement. >> thank you very much. mr. chairman, you began talking about, and it's been a discussion today about the process that we know that the president did prefer to walk around congress. not needing, thinking he needed the congress involved. i am of a belief that something this big would involve, should involve congressional input and dialogue. and that is really what the corker bill was about.
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and can you tell us, real quickly, how did the corker bill ensure that congress has the ability to block this deal and why we're here is relevant to, i believe your committee and the four other committees of jurisdiction and why we're here today at this committee. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i would just make the observation that congress registered its concerns very early in this process. and in a bipartisan way. because if we think back to the legislation that i and eliot engel originally authored and tried to push in terms of this negotiation, that legislation, which passed this house 400-20 -- 400-20, and then blocked over in the senate, at the request of the administration, and could not come up, that would have given the ayatollah a choice between economic collapse or real
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compromise on his nuclear agreement. and i want to get to this point. the president offers a false choice between this agreement or war. even a supporter of the deal testified in front of the committee that i chair that, i wouldn't say if you were opposed to this deal that somehow that leads to war. i think that is false, said the witness on the behalf of the administration. it is false. it is false. indeed, the country's top military office, the chairman of the joint chiefs, recently testified in front of congress disputing the assertion that it was this deal or war. noting that the united states would have a range of options, what are those options? the most important one, the most important option that we had, the most effective sanctions against iran have always been those that give companies and countries a choice to do business with iran or the united states, and that indeed, is the premise of the legislation that
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we had passed 400-20. that is what we wanted to put into play. when given such a choice, which would still be possible to do, if congress rejects this agreement, then the result, in every case we've seen in the past, is companies and countries choose the united states. they do not choose to do business and lock themselves out of our market. the obama administration has never liked sanctions. they fought vigorously to oppose sanctions targeting the iran central bank in december of 2011. then, as they are now, the obama administration claimed that imposing these sanctions would divide the international coalition and leave the united states alone in the world. i'll remind you, that didn't happen when we hung tough in 2011, when congress pushed for those sanctions and we got that set of sanctions through. indeed, that is why iran is even at the table. so, businesses and in particular banks, will be hesitant to put a
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premium on the iranian market if that means getting shut out of the united states. i think all of us understand that. that is the power of the united states financial markets. that is the potential damage of reputational risk to any company that makes that decision. that is the power that we in congress wanted to deploy in this negotiation. and that is what the administration did not deploy, flat out, by blocking the legislation that i andel yont engel passed out of this house. so while maintaining a united sanctions front as congress rejects the nuclear agreement will be difficult, it will be easier to do so today than five years from now when iran is caught cheating and a sanctions regime must be reconstructed because i guarantee you, based on past behavior, they will be caught cheating. would i would -- so i would ask you, would you sooner deploy a treat now to force them to open up with a program where you can
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have verifiable inspections, going back to reagan's quote, which was actually an old russian saying, right, trust but verify. the verification is the part where we both agree, we don't trust iran. it is the verification program that is missing here. and that is what gives us -- many issues that gives us such great qualms in moving forward with something that would allow the iranians to do their own verification and bring that to the united nations. for all of those verification. for all of those reasons we felt congress should be involved in negotiating this agreement, and why we're very disappointed that oh, the letter we sent on the committee, 84% of the members of this house signed that letter for the four issues that we wanted in this agreement. and not one of those issues is in the agreement. anywhere, any time informations, not there. don't lift the sanctions up
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front. hold them for the duration of the agreement to make sure that we have compliance. not there. the answers to the 12 questions from the iaea for which we have a thousand pages of evidence, not -- not there. the request that this be multiple decades not there. something we never envisioned. they add lifting the arms embargo on iran so iran will have the ability to move forward with its icbm program as well as transferring conventional arms to hezbollah and hamas. it -- i've never seen anything negotiated as poorly as this agreement. and that's why we're here today, mr. chairman. >> mr. chairman, could i just comment briefly? >> yes, sir. >> i have a a meeting at 6:00. i just need to keep. could i just take a couple of minutes? >> the gentleman would like a couple more minutes? would this be an opening
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statement or would this be to reply to a question? >> i asked if i could comment on -- >> you would like to reply to the same question. the gentleman is recognized. >> thank you. it's sometimes said that the administration fought the sanctions throughout. that's not true. i was involved in many of the discussions about sanctions. and if anybody wants to raise that question, i suggest that they talk to howard berman. it's not true. there were differences of opinion about the nature of the sanctions in some respect. it is incorrect to say that this administration opposed sanctions against iran. it's not true. and i just want to say one other word about this notion that we'll be stronger turning this
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down in terms of sanctions. i don't know of any responsible person who has looked at this who has the background in it who says that. i just suggest that you look at the testimony of secretary jack lew. he just refutes this notion that if we turn this down, we can on our own effectively impose a stronger sanctions regime. that's fallacious. we would walk alone, as mr. scowcroft has said and colin powell has said. the notion that we have the financial power when already other nations have begun to undertake some further economic work with iran, it's -- it's an illusion. it's an illusion.
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because so many of the sanctions would disappear. the other countries would not participate. and the ministers from the other countries have said very clearly to us that this notion that you can turn this down and have a stronger set of sanctions is something that is imaginary. i appreciate the chance to answer your question. we'll have a full debate on this for hours, as many as you allow. we'll have a full debate about this. mr. royce will have a chance to raise these points, and we'll be fully prepared to answer them. >> but if the gentleman would yield, part of this is personal for me because one of those bills was my bill. and when you say the president did not oppose sanctions, it was
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my -- if you would yield, it was my legislation. it did pass 400-20. it passed unanimously through the committee. and yes, the president and the secretary of state opposed it every step of the way. and managed to block it in the senate. so for me, my personal experience is one of -- one of not being able to convince the administration that putting additional pressure on iran with sanctions would be helpful. and the conclusion i reached is one that was shared by the vast majority of this house at the time. >> if you look -- if i take back my time -- >> excuse me just a minute. i appreciate the gentlemen having a discussion back and forth. yes, sir? thank you very much. i want to be respectful to all three of you to get the things out that you wanted to respond to a question. my last point that i'd like to make is simply this.
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the question that this will lead to war. and i think i have a tendency to understand that the american foreign policy i believe since the dropping of the bomb has been the belief that fewer countries should have access to nuclear weapons. we've spent a great deal of time trying to watch that, the proliferation that might occur, whether it was the soviet union or other nations as they go through their ups and downs. and that it defies my logic that we would just automatically say but you can have it in 15 years. when we've tried to do everything we can do to not do that. and it seems like to me that when negotiation fails, that's when you get war. i believe that to have any country that threatens our
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allies or americans, that it is in our best interests, mr. chairman, to make sure that we're doing what we can to protect this country. and i believe it's a capitulation and giving in to that. and so i have answered the question myself. i believe this is about making iran the strongest person in the middle east. and that comes against conventional wisdom. i don't understand that. and i'm worried about that. >> chairman, if i could respond to that, again, to quote the chairman of the joint chiefs, as he said, it is -- it does not -- it does not mean that we would have a military. conflict. he said that the united states has a range of options. he did not think it meant that. he thinks that it doesn't mean war. but what it does mean is rolling
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up our sleeves and turning up the economic pressure on the regime and on the regime supporters in negotiating a better agreement that advances the national security interests of the united states and our allies and our partners. but that is something that we will bebait as we go forward. >> well, my point was in the negotiations, we gave it to them. if we didn't want them to have it, it would resort the war. thank you very much. >> right. we're not opposed to diplomacy. we're just against bad diplomacy. and that's what we're going to debate. >> i think this gives up to diplomacy. the gentleman? >> to be excused. >> mr. levin, you did tell me you had things you had to do. >> and i appreciate the time. >> we appreciate you very much. thank you very much. >> thanks. >> yes, sir. ms williams, will you stay?
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>> thank you. i want to thank the chairman of the committee, foreign affairs for being here with us and thank ms. waters for being here with us also. mr. chairman, most of us here today agree the united states cannot tolerate a nuclear regime in iran. unfortunately, president obama and his allies have spent the past two months vilifying as warmongerers those who are deeply concerned as i am that this deal may postpone but will not prevent iran from gaining nuclear weapons. that is unfortunate rhetoric for those who themselves stated if you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care. before the final deal was announced, i spoke on the house familiar about my concerns that inspectors from the international atomic energy agency would have limited access
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to key sites under untenable bureaucratic terms. given what we know about the text of the deal itself, from the text of the deal itself, what we have learned about the agreement between iran and the iaea, these concerns are well-founded. in addition to allowing iran to continue and enhance its nuclear capabilities, this deal lifts crucial economic sanctions, allowing billions of dollars to flow into the iranian economy. it is expected that much of this windfall estimated to exceed 100 billion will pass through iran's economy to entity likes hezbollah, which is dedicated itself to war with israel since the early 1980s. mr. royce, your discussion with the chairman makes it clear a wealthier, more militarized iran poses a significant threat to the stability of our allies in
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the region, especially to our friend israel. given the ayatollah's continued public incitement of violence against israel, what steps can congress take in tandem with disapproval of the joint agreement to bolster israel's security and instability in the middle east? >> well, representative foxx, let me share with you my concerns in terms of what i saw up close on the basis of iran's transfer. >> your microphone. >> on the basis of iran's transfer of military capability to hezbollah. in 2006, when i was chairman of the terrorist subcommittee, anti-terrorism subcommittee, we were in haifa when it was being shelled by the hezbollah regime. and at this point, quds forces were on the ground. iranian forces were assisting. they maybe had 10,000 rockets and missiles in the inventory.
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in haifa, they were slamming these missiles. each one had 90,000 ball embargoes, into the center of town. there were 600 victims in the trauma hospital. going to prevent iran from building on the tragedy that we've already witnessed, the first question is this. we've already shown an incapacity to stop iran from transferring what was 10,000 rockets, and now is 80,000. but this is the recent statement that the iranian government has made. they now say what we need to do is to transfer, and this would be a violation, right, of the old arms embargo. but it's one of the reasons they wanted that lifted. they want to transfer to hezbollah the gps capability, or the ability to direct these missiles so they can be fired precisely at a given target.
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no longer will they just slam into the center of town. now they can hit the airport, or they can hit a skyscraper in tel aviv. or they can hit jerusalem at a specific location. that's the capability the iranian regime is trying to transfer. it's hard to do it when you don't have the resources. but boy, if you lift $100 billion worth of money that is held in escrow, and that goes into the hands of the irgc, then they're going have that capability. they've also it was reported in "the wall street journal," iran is looking to rebuild the tunnels. myself and eliot engel were in one of the tunnels there is 33 that were discovered. they need to be rebuilt according to the eyes the irgc in iran. so that government is offering to rebuild those tunnels for hamas, resupply hamas with weapons. and the question i have is in
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the middle of this negotiation, you have the head of the quds forces who personally led a raid into israel, who helped overthrow the government in yemen, win over allies, who has led forces in syria and in iraq, who has killed 500 americans, this individual reportedly made a trip over to russia in order to talk with russian officials. i wonder what he wanted. one of the things we know he wants is greater capability in offensive weaponry, missiles and otherwise. and now the russians are talking about sending to iran new missiles. those are the types of weapons that iran would like to put in the hands of hezbollah. and now that they're in syria, by the way, they're on the border and recently iran has been charged with firing missiles from syria into israel.
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so what i see here is a need to really focus on the fact that this tranche of cash into the hands of the military leaders in iran and the quds forces on the ground that help hezbollah is going to give them the opportunity to open up in very short order a new front. so if this goes through and the sanctions are lifted, and the arms embargo is lifted, these are the worries i think we have. but by the way, it's not just israel. i'll just remind you, our friends in the region, it wasn't just yemen that fell. jordan has concerns. the gulf states have concerns. egypt has to live with all the money that iran puts into the hands of the muslim brotherhood. so think about where this money is going to go and how many of our friends and allies are going to be threatened as a result. >> mr. chairman, i know we are spending a lot of time here today. and i'll ask one more quick question if i might.
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the administration has assured us that some u.s. sanctions will remain in place, like those related to iran's deplorable human rights violations. in your view, mr. royce, how effective will these remaining sanctions be in altering iran's behavior? >> well, think about this, if you will. members of the rules committee. iran takes the lives of about 2500 of its citizens every year. you hear about the cases in even prison and the torture and the killings. those are ones who have religious views that differ from the regime. think about the four americans that have been held by iran and the fact that they're not released. so we had one measure of leverage besides the drop in the price of oil, and that was the sanctions that we were holding on iran. that gave us if we were to double down on the sanctions and make it harder on iran, that
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gave us our best hope of changing the behavior of that regime. who now will be empowered when we lift the sanctions? as i said before, who controls in iran? the bank accounts, theirs is not a free economy. the ayatollahs, the clerics and the commanders of the irgc of their military are the ones that control the major companies because after the '79 revolution, they were transferred to those individuals. so as the money courses in, as the money goes through the society, they are the ones with the leverage. up until now, iran has been on the ropes. now lift the sanctions, a and those individuals will be empowered. and unfortunately, they're true believers in terms of their cause. when they say death to america, when they say death to israel, and you saw rouhani himself marching in the street, this is
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a story that "the new york times" carried. they said the crowd behind were saying "death to america." the signs in front of him, "death to israel." they quote rouhani and they ask him how does the future look. he says with this deal the future looks very bright. wouldn't it have been better if we at least had gotten them to change their rhetoric in terms of their threats? talk about telegraphing a punch. i mean, the iranian regime has been very clear in terms of its objectives since 1979. and the neighbors countries can attest to the fact that they're not only destabilizing the region, they have very real designs on what they would like to do in those neighborhoods in terms of sowing terror. and they prove they can do it whenever they can get their hands on hard currency. they're going have a lot more hard currency unfortunately if this deal goes through. >> thank you. thank you, mr. chairman. mrs. slaughter, you're
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recognized. >> thank you, madam chairman. i would like to ask consent of administrative policy. >> without objection. >> and i would like to read and let the administration speak for itself here this afternoon. the administration strongly opposes, as we all know, and it just talks about who is in the p5 plus 1. it would effectively block the international community from peacefully and verifiablebly preventing iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, would allow for the resumption of the unconstrain and unchecked iranian nuclear program, and would lead to the unraveling of the international sanctions regime that was sustained because the administration sought to diplomatically resolve concerns regarding iran's nuclear program. further enactment of this resolution would deal a devastating blow to america's credibility as a leader of diplomacy and could ultimately result in the exhaustion of alternatives to military action.
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if this resolution were enacted, the hard work of sustaining a unified coalition to combat iran's destabilizing activities in the region would be much more difficult, as would america's ability to lead the world on nuclear nonproliferation. preventing iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon has ban top priority of the united states and the administration. it's been a long-standing policy to retain all options to achieve that objective, including possible military options. at the same time, the administration has worked diligently with the congress and our international partners to achieve a peaceful diplomatic solution, recognizing that a negotiated understanding offers a more effective, a verifiable and durable resolution. jcpoa achieves this by reinforcing the prohibition against iran obtaining a nuclear weapon. a verifiablebly cutting off all of iran's potential pathways to
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a nuclear weapon and instituting the most comprehensive inspection and verification regime ever neglected to a nuclear program. jcpoa makes the united states and the world safer by removing the gravest threat that iran could pose to the middle east, including israel and our gulf partners. the jcpoa if faithfully implemented would very final cut off through a plutonium pathway or through a potential covert plan. iran is bound under the treaty of nonproliferation of nuclear weapons to never seek a nuclear weapon and jcpoa provides the tools to ensure that iran cannot use a peaceful program as a cover to pursue a nuclear weapon. jcpoa is not based on trust, but on an unprecedented inspections, monitoring and transparency
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regime. under the jcpoa there will be 24/7 monitoring of iran's key nuclear facilities. inspectors will be able to get timely access to the places they need to go for inspections or iran will be in violation of the jcpoa and risk the reimposition of sanctions which let me add would probably only be possible if we have this treaty, or this agreement rather. because the other nations in this agreement would not go along with reinstating sanctions. and they have said so. for decades, the inspectors will have access to iran's entire nuclear supply chain from the uranium mines and mills to the centrifuge production facilities. and this means in order for iran to covertly acquire a nuclear weapon, it would need to build an entirely separate undetected nuclear supply chain. the jcpoa also facilitates the international accom mick energy
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agency to complete its report on the possible military dimensions of iran's 2003 program. it also ensures that iran has powerful incentives to keep its nuclear agreements. before getting phased relief from secondary sanction, iran has to complete all of the major nuclear steps which will extend the amount of time it would take iran to acquire enough material from the one weapon from the current two to three months to at least a year. for example, the core of iran's heavywater reactor will be pulled out and filled with concrete, rendering it unable to produce plutonium that co. be used to create a weapon. 2/3 of its nearly 20,000 currently installed centrifuges will be removed. its current stockpile of enriched uranium will be enriched by 98%. and it must put in place the monitoring surveillance and access measures that will ensure the ability to verify that its
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nuclear program is used exclusively for peaceful purposes going forward. if iran fails to abide by jcpoa commitments, all relieved sanctions both unilateral and multilateral can snap back into place. the administration is fully committed to continuing to brief and closely consult the congress as we work with our international partners to ensure successful implementation of the jcpoa. as we address our concerns with iran's nuclear program, the administration remains clear-eyed and shares the deep concerns of the congress and the american people about iran's support for terrorism. its destabilizing role in the region, its human right ace bayouses. and that is why we will continue to vigorously enforce our sanctions against these activities and work closely with our partners in the region to counter them. using a range of unilateral and multilateral tools. the jcpoa must be assessed by
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what it achieves on its central goal of preventing iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. and the administration urges the congress to fully consider the stakes for our national security of walking away from the international community. without the jcpoa in place, iran would likely resume the advancement of its nuclear program without any of the constraints or transparency required by this deal, and without the international unity of our sanctions regime, which would be the worst of all possible worlds, leaving us in a position of weakness, not strength. the president has made it clear that he will veto any legislation that prevents the successful implementation of jcpoa if the president were presented with hres-64. he would veto the resolution. and i yield back my time. thank you very much. mr. cole, you're recognized.
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>> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to begin by thanking both our members from being here. i especially want to thank the chairman who i think has been particularly astute. and i want to pause it a couple of things up-front before i ask my questions. first, i don't question anybody's motives in this debate. i really don't. quite frankly, on the president's side, look, about two out of every three people that have an opinion in the country are against this deal. and most americans think -- i saw another poll today that if a majority of congress disapproves as it likely will, that the president shouldn't veto that. so -- and, you know, from the president's the future of democratic leader in the senate is opposed to this deal. is the former democratic chairman of the senate foreign relations committee is opposed to this deal. i believe both the current ranking members of the senate
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and the house foreign affairs committee, both democrats obviously are opposed to this deal. so if you're willing to push ahead under that, then you certainly must believe in the deal. so i don't have any doubt that the president believes in what he is doing. and i don't have any doubt the secretary believes in what he is doing. i also want to posit the same thing is true on the other side. we've heard a lot of rhetoric out of the white house that republican opposition is simply partisan obstructionism. they were singing a little different tune six weeks ago when trade promotion authority got passed overwhelmingly by republican votes to give what the president to that point had been his biggest foreign policy victory of the year. and frankly, if he negotiates successfully deals and transpacific partnership and the equivalent agreement with our european friends, it will probably be overwhelmingly republican votes that pass that if he chooses to submit an agreement.