Obama, Senate Clash Over Iran Sanctions as Kerry Continues Talks

Obama Puts Chances of Deal at Less Than 50/50

President Obama and hawkish senators led by Sen. Robert Menendez (D – NJ) are lining up to clash once again over the ongoing negotiations between Iran and the P5+1, even as Secretary of State John Kerry continues to meet with his Iranian counterpart to try to make progress on a deal.

The Senate doesn’t want a deal, and is planning to push ahead with sanctions against Iran that would deliberately violate the interim P5+1 pact, in hopes of killing the negotiations.

President Obama has threatened a veto, and further warned that imposing more sanctions against Iran could lead the US into another war. Obama is presenting that as an argument against the sanctions, but for many of the most outspoken backers, that seems to be very much the point.

Several in the Senate have expressed the belief that they will be able to override a presidential veto on the sanctions, but it seems like it will be a close vote either way in the Senate, and much, much harder in the House.

Despite wanting to keep the talks going, Obama insisted that there is a “less than 50/50 chance” of an actual deal ever being reached with Iran. This assessment echoes similar pessimism from other officials, as the US continues to demand Iran make more concessions on its civilian energy program to keep the talks going.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of Antiwar.com.