Chad’s Morning Brief: Lawmakers Skeptical Of Iran Nuclear Deal, Texas Women and Democrats, and More
Here is your Morning Brief for the morning of November 25, 2013. Give me your feedback below and tune in to The Chad Hasty Show for these and many more topics from 8:30 to 11am. Remember, you can listen online at KFYO.com or on your iPhone/Android with the radioPup App.
Over the weekend a deal was reached over the Iranian nuclear program. While the administration celebrated, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle were skeptical according to FOX News.
Congress is voicing widespread, bipartisan skepticism about the deal between the United States and Iran to curb that country’s nuclear program, with a group of top senators vowing Sunday to impose more sanctions on the isolated Middle East country.
The announcement follows the overnight deal in which the U.S. and five other world powers agreed to ease billions of dollars worth of import-export sanctions in exchange for Iran curbing its nuclear-enrichment program and a range of reaction off Capitol Hill.
“A nuclear weapons-capable Iran presents a grave threat to the national security of the United States and its allies and we are committed to preventing Iran from acquiring this capability," the group said. “We will work together to reconcile Democratic and Republican proposals over the coming weeks and to pass bipartisan Iran sanctions legislation as soon as possible.”
The group of 15 senators included Democrats Bob Cardin of Maryland and Bob Menendez of New Jersey, as well as Republicans Bob Corker of Tennessee and John Cornyn of Texas.
Corker, the top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told “Fox News Sunday” that Iran was celebrating because its deal overnight with the U.S. and five other world powers allows it to continue to enrich uranium while getting billions in crippling sanctions lifted.
“They’re spiking the ball in the end zone,” Corker said.
He also said his greatest concern was that the Obama administration wouldn’t follow through on the terms of the deal -- including daily inspections on Iran nuclear facilities and ensuring that the country sticks to new thresholds for nuclear enrichment -- below levels toward building a nuclear weapon.
He also repeatedly said he didn’t want the interim deal to “become the norm” and suggested Congress is ready to reinstate sanctions and impose more.
The key points of the deal require Iran to halt progress toward its disputed nuclear program, in exchange for modest relief from U.S. economic sanctions that include now having access to $4.2 billion from oil sales.
Iran agrees to turn off centrifuges, stop construction and fuel production at an unfinished nuclear reactor, limit its enrichment of uranium – needed to a nuclear bomb -- to 5 percent and dilute its stockpile of 20 percent-enriched uranium.
Menendez, the foreign relations committee chairman, was among the most critical Democrats.
“The interim agreement reached is but a beginning and a product of that policy,” he said in a separate statement. "In my view, this agreement did not proportionately reduce Iran's nuclear program for the relief it is receiving. Given Iran's history of duplicity, it will demand ongoing, on the ground verification.”
California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, offered what appears to be some of the most unequivocal support for the deal.
“I support the agreement … which I believe is a significant step toward solving one of the most difficult security challenges facing the world today,” she said, while also expressing caution. “By any standard, this agreement is a giant step forward and should not be undermined by additional sanctions at this time.”
Cornyn was among the most critical of the historic deal that President Obama is hailing as an “important first step.”
“Amazing what WH will do to distract attention from O-care” tweeted Cornyn, referring to the White House and ObamaCare.
His remark drew sharp rebuke from Obama 2008 presidential campaign manager David Ploufee.
“No, a real distraction would be war. Like Iraq,” he tweeted in response.
We've seen this game before folks. What will end up happening is that Iran halts or hides what they do for 6 months and they will get nearly $7 billion dollars. After that time period, they will start back up again.
We are trusting the words of leaders who don't believe in the Holocaust and who want to wipe Israel off the map. Yeah, sound smart to me.
Women in Texas
Texas Democrats are making a play for female voters in Texas. With two high profile women running for the top two statewide races, Democrats are hoping they will appeal to the undecided women of Texas according to the Texas Tribune.
State Sen. Leticia Van de Putte’s announcement on Saturday that she is running for lieutenant governor, adding a second woman to a ticket led by state Sen.Wendy Davis, is enhancing Texas Democrats’ hopes that they could see their first statewide victory since 1994.
The Democrats are pinning their strategy, in part, on women, particularly those in the suburbs, who early polling numbers suggest might not have their minds made up, and could be persuaded by the summer’s divisive debate over abortion legislation.
“What we know from the outcome of this summer is that women were paying attention and women were watching,” Van de Putte said. “It wasn’t just about that bill. It wasn’t just about health care. It was about not being valued.”
But Republicans say they are holding fast to this demographic, which has trended conservative in past elections.
“I think in Texas the majority of people are happy with how the state is doing,” said Steve Munisteri, chairman of the Republican Party of Texas. “That’s one of the reasons why we’re winning by such a large margin.”
It's probably the only real strategy that Democrats of come up with, but that doesn't mean it's a good strategy.
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