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Senate Votes 94-0 to Override Obama on Iran Sanctions

Home - by - December 2, 2012 - 15:00 America/New_York - 6 Comments


The Senate approved new economic sanctions on Iran on Friday, overriding objections from the White House that the legislation could undercut existing efforts to rein in Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

The Senate voted 94-0 to impose additional U.S. financial penalties on foreign businesses and banks involved in Iran’s energy, ports, shipping and shipbuilding sectors, and impose sanctions on metals trade with Iran.

Sens. Bob Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat, and Mark Kirk, an Illinois Republican, the architects of a year-old law that has curtailed Iran’s oil exports and revenues, said the new measure would go further toward squeezing Iran’s economy and increase the pressure on the Islamic Republic to negotiate on its disputed nuclear program.

White House officials told Senate Democratic leaders in a late-night email on Nov. 29 that the administration didn’t think more sanctions are needed yet and asked them to hold off until next year. The new provisions were confusing and inconsistent in applying sanctions, according to the email, and the ambiguities “would hamper implementation” of sanctions.

“We believe additional authorities now threaten to undercut” existing sanctions, National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said yesterday in a statement. “We also have concerns with some of the formulations as currently drafted in the text and want to work through them with our congressional partners to make the law more effective and consistent with the current sanctions law to ensure we don’t undercut our success to date.”

The new package is an amendment to the annual defense authorization bill that awaits a vote that may come as soon as Dec 3. The measure would still have to be reconciled with a House of Representatives’ version, and already faces a potential veto by Obama over provisions unrelated to Iran sanctions.

While almost all trade with Iran by any U.S. business or individual has long been banned, the amendment approved yesterday would impose penalties on other nations’ trade with the nation, a step closer to a trade embargo on Iran.



  1. Menderman

    December 2nd, 2012

    WOW! Sounds like an Obama budget vote! And that’s gonna put a hurtin’ on Susan Rice’s investments.

    Noteworthy Comment Thumb up +10

  2. J. Galt

    December 2nd, 2012

    “The white house (Trojan horse) objected to additional sanctions against Iran because the ADDITIONAL sanctions would undermine EXISTING sanctions.”


    So… do ADDITIONAL policemen undermine EXISTING policemen?

    Washington D.C. is not home to the best and brightest among us.

    Thumb up +6

  3. MaryfromMarin

    December 2nd, 2012

  4. MaryfromMarin

    December 2nd, 2012

    Which six did not vote, and why?

    Thumb up +4

  5. Blink

    December 2nd, 2012


    Rockefeller (D-WV), Not Voting
    Wyden (D-OR), Not Voting
    Alexander (R-TN), Not Voting
    Hatch (R-UT), Not Voting
    Heller (R-NV), Not Voting
    Kirk (R-IL), Not Voting

    WV voted overwhelmingly against Obama in the recent election. And rightfully so. Yet, voted voted to return Nick Rahall to Congress, though he voted in support of most of the Obama agenda. Rahall ought to have been tossed out too.

    With a little luck perhaps we can rid ourselves of Sen Rockefeller in the next election and replace him with Shelly Moore Capito. I’m sick and tired of anyone, from either party, sitting in the same office for life. Eight to 12 years is enough, then turn ‘em out.


    Thumb up +1

  6. MaryfromMarin

    December 2nd, 2012

    Thanks, @Blink.

    I just sent an email to Sen. Heller (R-NV) asking if he would explain to me why he did not vote. I supported him during the last election, so I figure I might hear something back.

    Kirk’s “not voting” is weird, as he was one of the architects of this.

    Thumb up 0