(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
The White House on Tuesday reiterated opposition to any new sanctions against Iran related to the country’s nuclear program, even conditional sanctions that wouldn’t take effect for six months.
It’s a move that could put the kibosh on an attempt by top Senate Democrats to push new restrictions on the country.
“We strongly believe that passing new sanctions now will result in our international partners, as well as Iran, seeing us as having negotiated that agreement in bad faith, which would then have a bearing on our core sanctions architecture,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said. “The sanctions regime that [Congress] helped us build has provided this opportunity. It has succeeded in the sense that the sanctions were designed to pressure Tehran into changing its behavior, and because of the impact of the sanctions, Tehran has changed its behavior — or indicated that it is willing to change its behavior.”
Carney declined to specifically issue a blanket veto threat, noting there was no Statement of Administration Policy to announce.
That’s no surprise, because there’s no legislation yet. However, Foreign Relations Chairman Robert Menendez, D-N.J., and like-minded senators in both parties appear to be coalescing around an additional sanctions regime that would take effect in six months if subsequent conversations between the P5+1 countries and Iran fail to yield results.