Most Jewish lawmakers voting for the Iran deal

A majority of Jewish lawmakers in the US Congress say they are voting for the deal negotiated by President Barack Obama’s administration to stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

“The bottom line is that Iran is a bad actor and a nuclear-armed Iran would make the world a much more dangerous place – and that is why Congress should unite behind this deal to block Iran’s path to a bomb,” said Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif.

“This isn’t an agreement just between the United States and Iran. These are the big powers. And in fact, from what I’ve learned, both Russia and China at key times were very helpful in putting this together,” said Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif. “So you have the big powers of the world essentially saying we believe that this will end the nuclear weapons pursuit, where it’s possible for Iran to become a more active partner for peace and goodwill, and I very much believe that.”

“Many have expressed reservations about the deal, and I share some of those reservations. It isn’t a perfect agreement,” said Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn. “But it is a strong one. This agreement is, in my opinion, the most effective, realistic way to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon anytime in the next 15 years.”

“It’s so easy to be critical of an agreement which is not perfect but the United States has to negotiate,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., who is running for president. “And the alternative of not reaching an agreement, you know what it is? It’s war. Do we really want another war, a war with Iran? An asymmetrical warfare that will take place all over this world, threatening American troops. So I think we go as far as we possibly can in trying to give peace a chance, if you like. Trying to see if this agreement will work. And I will support it.”

“This agreement should not be compared to an imaginary deal where Iran rolled over, and eliminated all its centrifuges and all peaceful nuclear energy generation. That was never seriously on the table,” Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii. “It should be compared to its real world alternative — an unraveling of the international sanctions, Iran moving ever faster towards the bomb, and our country left with few choices other than another war in the Middle East.”

“I along with my brother and late sister when we were in our teens experienced with our parents great personal joy when President Truman announced US recognition of Israel,” said Rep. Sander Levin, D-Mich. “It was something that we could take hold of amidst the unfolding horrors of the years before.”

“Israel’s security has and always will be of critical importance to me and our country,” said Levin. “I believe that Israel, the region, and the world are far more secure if Iran does not move toward possession of a nuclear weapon. I believe the Agreement is the best way to achieve that.”

“This agreement will not solve every problem – and I stand with the President in his pledge to do even more to protect Israel’s security and combat ISIS,” said Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill. “But this deal will prevent Iran from posing the most serious problem – a nuclear threat. Now that our negotiators have succeeded, I stand ready to make sure this agreement moves forward.”

“The Iranian people will one day throw off the shackles of their repressive regime, and I hope that this deal will empower those who wish to reform Iranian governance and behavior,” said Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif. “The fifteen years or more this agreement provides will give us the time to test that proposition, without Iran developing the bomb and without the necessity of protracted military action. Then, as now, if Iran is determined to go nuclear, there is only one way to stop it and that is by the use of force. But then at least, the American people and others around the world will recognize that we did everything possible to avoid war.”

“This historic agreement is a victory for American diplomacy and international security,” said Rep. John Yarmuth, D-Ky. “We now have a clear plan to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon, which ensures a safer world and a more stable Middle East. As President Obama stated this morning, this agreement is not built on trust — it is built on verification.”

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