Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will insist that any deal President Obama strikes with Iran be approved by Congress.
The Kentucky Republican told CBS News’ Bob Schieffer on “Face The Nation” this morning that he’s “very worried” about the Obama administration’s approach to Iranian nuclear negotiations.
Asked by Schieffer if any deal reached between Obama and Iran should be handled as a treaty, McConnell said, “Yes.”
McConnell said there is a proposal with “10 Democratic cosponsors” that would require the deal come before Congress for approval that the president has threatened to veto.
“He doesn’t want us to have any role to play in this, but I’m hoping we can get 67 senators to assert the historic role of the Senate and the Congress in looking at matters of this magnitude,” said McConnell.
“Obviously, the president doesn’t want us involved in this,” McConnell added, “but he’s going to need us if he’s going to lift any of the existing sanctions. He cannot work around Congress forever.”
McConnell said the president opposed sanctions passed “overwhelmingly” in the Senate, and threatened to veto additional sanctions approved by Congress.
McConnell reiterated the threats posed by a nuclear Iran.
“I think we need to—as [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu] pointed out—know who we’re dealing with here,” said McConnell. “The Iranians are fomenting trouble in Syria, in Lebanon, in Gaza, in Yemen, all over the Middle East, they are on the march. They have enhanced influence in Iraq. … We can’t ignore all of their other behavior in looking at a potential nuclear deal.”
He said that the proposed deal would “leave the infrastructure [for nuclear capabilities] in place with one of the worst regimes in the world.”
“The fact that the president doesn’t want Congress to participate in this underscores what a bad deal it is,” said McConnell. “I think he’s afraid that we might not approve it.”
“I hope that the president will not make the bad deal that we all anticipate he’s going to make,” said McConnell.
McConnell added that he is “glad” Netanyahu came to address Congress because someone needed to point out “the problems with the deal we anticipate will be made” and “Iran’s other behavior.”