Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell backtracked on his earlier pledge to allow bills before the senate body to enjoy a robust period of roll call votes for amendments. In regards to the Iran nuclear bill or the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act as it is formally called, Senator McConnell believed two freshmen GOP senators, Marco Rubio & Tom Cotton, were using the roll call votes to insert an amendment into the bill which would effectively kill it. The amendment sought by Marco Rubio, a 2016 GOP presidential contender, would require Iran formally recognize Israel’s right to exist as a precondition to any sanctions being lifted. In addition, the amendment would require the immediate release of all Americans currently held hostage by the rogue nation.
Senator McConnell believes the current bill’s handy filibuster-proof support would be threatened by the Rubio-Cotton amendment and has cut off any further roll call votes. Tennessee Senator Bob Corker, the original bill’s sponsor, backs McConnell’s action. Corker believes the bill provides some congressional oversight which is better than having none at all. Critics charge the bill is worse than doing nothing. This is because it ignores the constitutional mandate that the senate approve any treaty by a 2/3rds majority with no deadline for final approval. Instead, the Corker bill presumes the any agreement the president strikes with Iran will have congressional approval unless 60 senators vote to disapprove. This means a united Democrat party can filibuster a disapproval vote allowing the president’s agreement to take effect.