|Credit: AP/Seth Wenig/Susan Walsh/Photo montage by Salon|
Senator Chuck Schumer says leaders need to go back to the table to renegotiate the Iran Deal, and made his first public comments about the statement Monday afternoon in Greece.
Schumer says the deal has too many flaws: He says a 24-day delay for inspections doesn't offer complete security against nuclear development in Iran, and he's concerned about categorizing the country as a nuclear threshold state in ten years.
"If you believe the Iranian regime may change, then you say, 'Ok, it's a gamble.' But if you think they're going to be the same horrible regime they are now, you don't want the United States and the other nations of the world putting a stamp of approval on Iran being a nuclear threshold state." The deal currently promises Iran relief from sanctions that have devastated the economy, as long as it curbs its nuclear program and submits to inspections for a decade. The senator says he thinks the regime might use that money to cause political problems in the Middle East instead.
Schumer says he does not believe this position will threaten his leadership role within the Democratic Party.
The senator says renegotiating would be difficult, but he believes sanctions are strong enough to keep Iran invested in brokering a deal.Schumer states but doesn't emphatically argue his points to persuade other Democrats. Schumer said, "A lot of this is a question of judgement. It's a close question . . . I don't begrudge anyone who sees it the other way." -
(Video courtesy: Bud Lowell)
More than 20 speakers presented arguments to over 10,000 New Yorkers to appeal to Sen. Chuck Schumer and other members of Congress to oppose this initiative at Stop Iran Rally in Times Square July 22, 2015. Jeffrey Wiesenfeld of the Jewish Rapid-Response Coalition emcee'd and opined that it wouldn't be sufficient for Schumer to give a nice speech, then say that others should "vote their conscience." Citizens should demand Schumer, as a likely party leader, should round-up enough votes to over-ride Pres. Obama's veto.
At the press conference in Greece, NY, Sen. Schumer explained his decision to oppose Obama's Iran proposition. He feels the solution is to try secondary sanctions on Iran. He states- but doesn't emphatically enough argue his points to persuade other Democrats, just as Jeff Wiesenfeld fears. Said Schumer, "A lot of this is a question of judgement. It's a close question . . . I don't begrudge anyone who sees it the other way."
According to Mike Debonis in the Washington Post's Chuck Schumer isn't actually going to kill the Iran deal:
While virtually every Democratic senator said initially that he or she was undecided on the Iran deal and planned to make a decision only after close study, only a small subset of the Democratic caucus is considered even close to likely to vote against it.
Those include the eight senators who were early co-sponsors of the legislation establishing a congressional review process for the deal. Of those eight, two have announced support for the deal and only Schumer has declared opposition. (Another Democratic co-sponsor, Robert Menendez of New Jersey, is almost certain to be a no.)
If no Republicans break ranks to support the deal, deal opponents would have to guarantee each of those undecided Democrats -- Joe Donnelly (Ind.), Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.), Michael F. Bennet (Colo.) and Richard Blumenthal (Conn.) -- maintained their opposition in order to block a Democratic filibuster, or try and recruit from the 12 Democrats who signed on to the Iran review bill only after the White House dropped its opposition. (One of those, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, announced her support of the deal Thursday.)
Long story short: getting the 67 votes to override a veto would require a monumental feat of persuasion under the current circumstances, and getting the 60 necessary to block a filibuster is hardly assured.
In "Chuck Schumer, Hero?" in the Wall St. Journal, William McGurn speculates:
To make his mark, Mr. Schumer would have to do more than vote no. He would have to do what Jackson did in his day: To lead, to rally others to his side, and set before the American public an alternative approach for dealing with a determined and untrustworthy enemy.
Sure, the president and his supporters would howl. They are howling now, and it’s not pretty.
And sure, it was easier for Scoop Jackson to go up against a president of the other party rather than one from his own. But those who have doubts might ask Jimmy Carter whether Jackson was afraid to buck his own president if he thought it necessary.
Among the upsides for Mr. Schumer is that he’d be liberated from having to defend policies that he knows leave the world less safe and make war more likely. He would help address the drift of a Democratic Party that booed the mention of Jerusalem at its last convention. Finally, he would be greeted as a hero by a good swath of the American electorate—and rightly so.
Manifestly, the odds are stacked against Mr. Schumer’s recruiting enough Democratic senators to get to the 67 votes needed to sink the nuclear deal. But it’s no sure thing for the White House, either. Most Americans are skeptical of the agreement; the president’s defenses are proving petulant and unpersuasive; and five weeks remain before a vote.Sen. Schumer's playing-down may come as a result of the anti-Israel and Jewish dual-loyalism rhetoric from Pres. Obama on Jewish opponents of his Iran détente. James Taranto addresses comprehensively references to attacks in "Bigotry, Pure and Simple’ - The ugly attacks on Sen. Chuck Schumer" in the Wall St. Journal, 10 Aug
The NY Post editorial of 10 August characterizes the administration's dirty tactics- and the challenge Schumer should rise to: The anti-Semitic drive to silence Schumer on the Iran deal <
... The dual-loyalty smear popped up even before Schumer came out against the deal. A New York Times editorial, for one, talked of the “unseemly spectacle of lawmakers siding with a foreign leader” — Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu — against Obama.
In fact, it’s Obama who’s siding with foreign leaders: Iran’s. At least Israel’s an ally.
Schumer still seems to think he can appease the deal’s supporters by not pushing aggressively for its defeat.
It won’t work. Schumer made a potent case against the deal last week — warning, above all else, that it hands at least $50 billion to an Iranian regime that’s likely to become even more hard-line.
He also rightly sees this as paving the way for Iran to get nukes via a US-approved process. How is that not a life-or-death matter?
Sorry, senator: There’s no excuse for not doing everything — everything — possible to stop this madness. And, as the anti-Semitic attacks and other threats suggest, pulling your punches won’t buy you any love from the pro-deal zealots.
Schumer’s long dreamed of becoming Senate leader. Now’s his chance to show leadership, stand up for what he says are his beliefs, convince fellow senators to nix the deal — and head off a nuclear Iran.