Sen. Chuck Schumer’s (D – NY) announcement yesterday that he is going to oppose the P5+1 nuclear deal with Iran sparked an initial flurry of concern that, as an influential senator, he might sway enough Democrats to the opposition to kill the pact.
That’s seeming less and less likely, however, and there is speculation that Schumer’s public opposition was conditional on him knowing his vote wouldn’t matter. Analysts say if Schumer thought he could kill the deal outright, he’d have gone public sooner, and much more loudly.
Instead, he backed into the announcement after a week of reports it was coming, and faced with heavy lobbying from AIPAC. The vote at this point is seen as all but obligatory, though the White House continues to warn he votes against the pact at his own “peril.” There are already some reports of backlashes against Schumer from Democrat activists.
Despite all of this fighting, White House officials say they remain confident that Congress will not be able to muster enough votes to actually block the Iran deal. They would need a two-thirds majority in both houses to override a promised presidential veto.