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tv   U.S. House of Representatives Morning Hour  CSPAN  July 14, 2016 10:00am-12:01pm EDT

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there was a strong citizen movement to have the right to know what was in their food. it was not a battle about the science of g.m.o.'s or about whether it was healthy or not. it was really based on the proposition that for a consumer who wishes to know what is in their food, whether it's a number of calories or whether it's g.m.o. produced, they had a right to know. it's as simple as that. the irony here is that the pushback has been from folks who are advocating the benefits of g.m.o.'s and if they're so great -- and i'm not disputing what some of their benefits may be -- why not brag about it by putting it on the label? why hide it? . it doesn't make sense. in vermont we had a bipartisan vote in the senate 28-2, and strong bipartisan vote in the house that was based upon the right of vermonters who wanted to know whether there were g.m.o.'s to have that knowledge.
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it was a lot of pushback initially by strifment but some of the industry has kind of got it right. if the cop sumer wants to know, let them know. kellogg's, campbell soup, both now have labeling on their products and let the consumers know. what's really the big deal? now, we've got a bill from the senate that frankly when you look at it, it's kind of dumb, because what it does is give options on how, quote, you label. you can use english where right on the label you can read g.m.o.'s or not. that makes sense. then there is another mechanism where there's like a bar code, you have to go to the store with your iphone, scan the bar code -- by the way, when you're grocery shopping, you're trying to get home, dinner on, you have kids who have to go to school practice, and you're supposed to stop and scan the bar code, go to a website to see whether that can of black bean soup has g.m.o.'s or not. then the other option you have
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is in the middle of the store, dial 1-800 number. get a call center probably overseas, and talk to somebody and ask them whether this can of soup you are holding 5,000 miles away from the person you are talking to contains g.m.o.'s or not. 30 seconds? mr. peterson: an additional one minute. mr. welch: so we've got this situation where in the senate bill that we're now considering there's an acknowledgement that there should be a label. but it contains a label that's impossible to read. so if there is an acknowledgement about the right of a consumer to have access to the information, why not give them the information in plain and simple english? we don't have to do dumb end arounds in order to give consumers the information they are seeking. and that's the essence of the opposition to this bill. make it simple, keep it simple.
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let people know what it is they are buying so they can make the decision. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from minnesota reserves. gentleman from texas. mr. conaway: thank you, mr. speaker. my good friend just spoke, he is my friend, not the common my good friend nonsense we typically say. his arguments would be a bit more forceful if the wisdom of the vermont legislature had touted hadn't exempted all those state produced products like ben and jerry's ice cream from the important label that folks who eat ice cream in ver tonight don't need to know. with that i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from minnesota. mr. peterson: mr. speaker, the gentleman from texas ready to close? i have no further speakers. again, this isn't a perfect bill. i think that we would prefer the house bill, but this is a bill that was able to pass the
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senate. it will get us past this crisis situation that was developed because of the vermont law going into effect. something that we think is workable. and gives the usda the authority to not only develop this system but also for the first time actually determine what this means because that's one of the big issues that has -- you talk 10 different people about what a g.m.o. is, you get 10 different answers. what's going to happen here is we're going to have a situation where we will define what this means, and that's a big step forward. i encourage my colleagues to support the bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from minnesota reserves. the gentleman from texas. the gentleman from minnesota yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. conaway: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, before i yield back i want to thank everybody involved in this debate. particularly my team and the work they did, hard work.
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the bill we passed a year ago with much labor and much work wound up not being the answer we all wanted. i think we got 275 of our colleagues to vote for it a year ago. there have been a lot of efforts in this regard. i want to thank our team for doing that. thank the ranking member and his team for the hard work they have been doing. i appreciate the civility of the debate this morning. i look forward to passage of the bill shortly. i encourage all my colleagues to vote in favor of s. 764 when it comes to the floor later on. with that i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas yields back. all time for debate has expired. pursuant to house resolutionle 22, the previous question is ordered. the question is on the motion of the gentleman from texas, mr. conaway. so many as are in favor say aye. spone -- those opposed, no. the aye vs. t the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. the gentleman from vermont ask for the yeas and nays? the yeas and nays are requested, those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise.
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a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20 and the order of the house of today, further proceedings on this question will be postponed. the chair lays before the house n enrolled bill. the clerk: h.r. 4875, an act to establish the united states semiquinn centennial commission, nd for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will receive message. the messenger: mr. speaker, a message from the senate. the secretary: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: madam secretary. the secretary: i have been directed by the senate to inform the house that the senate passed filipino ted as the veterans of world war ii congressional gold medal act of 2015 in which the concurrence of the house is requested.
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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition?
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>> mr. speaker, pursuant to house resolution 819, i call up the bill h.r. 5631 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 5631, a bill to hold iran accountable for its state sponsorship of activity and human rights abuses and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 819, the bill is considered as read the gentleman from california, mr. royce, and the gentleman from new york, mr. engel, will each control 30 minutes. mr. royce: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to evise and extend their remarks and to include extraneous materials on this bill. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i ask unanimous consent to enter into the letters from committees that received referrals of this bill. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. royce: mr. speaker, i rise in support of this h.r. 5631.
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this is the iran accountability t, and this week marks the first anniversary of president obama's agreement with iran, and i wish i could say that it has been a win or the win that the proponents had hoped for, but a sober assessment is that both the short-term and long-term national security interests of the united states have been deeply impacted here. we have suffered as a result of this agreement. under the deal the obama administration promised that we would be in a position to verify all of iran's commitments under the agreement. this just has not been the case. a year later we have less public information about iran's nuclear activities than we did before the pact. international inspectors were to have full and unrestricted
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access to any military or suspicious location in iran. now, it turns out that the deal included an unprecedented arrangement that relies on iran parchin nspect its military complex. the administration insisted that a u.n. security council resolution would continue to prohibit iran's ballistic missile development. the reality is that it has a loophole big enough for iran to shoot an intercontinental ballistic missile through, and iran has. it has shot through that loophole. some of those tested missiles that they have shot through , at loophole are marked israel must be wiped off the earth. that's what's in writing in farsi on the side of them, and if anybody should not get the
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message, it's also written in hebrew. when the obama administration was strong arming its allies in the other body to save its iran deal, many promises were made. central to the white house storyline was the president's claim that sanctions on iran for terrorism and sanctions for human rights and sanctions on the ballistic missiles will, in their words, continually -- continue to be fully enforced. is, unfortunately, has not happened. unfortunately, the administration's words have not matched its actions. the administration has meekly responded to iran's provocative acts. thanks in part to the weak u.n. security council language in which we watered down the previous language on ballistic missiles, that was agreed to by the administration, and just
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one, only one iranian, one sole individual has been sanctioned for human rights abuses since negotiations began. one. indeed, last month a top treasury official publicly proclaimed that terrorism and missile sanctions would undermine the iran agreement. that is not what this committee was originally told before this agreement was voted on. we were told exactly the opposite. by now, every member should know the pattern and the pattern is this. if iran objects, the administration bends over backwards to accommodate. effectively, the supreme leader now holds the veto pen over future congressional action. this policy of what i call walking on eggshells in deaf ance to tehran -- in deaf rens security. urts our
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the nuclear agreement permits sanctions on the iranian reream for activities such as missile tests or for terrorism or for human rights abuses. indeed, that's what the administration said they would do after they struck their deal. this legislation before the households the administration to their promises to us, and among other provisions, the legislation increases sanctions ainst iran's islamic revolutionary guard corps. that's what we call the irgc. it expands sanctions against iran for its ballistic missile development, and we should. it stresses the fundamental human rights of the iranian people askey to our national security -- as key to our national security concerns. and i would say, congress has an obligation to look for ways to stem the tide of iranian
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aggression in the region and to tem the tide of its repression of the persian of the iranian people at home. i strongly urge all of my colleagues to support this legislation, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: mr. speaker, i rise in opposition to this measure, and i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. engel: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i just walked here from our hearing room where the foreign affairs committee marked up 13 measures. we had a hearing this morning. some were written by republicans, some by democrats. when these bills and resolutions were first introduced, a lot of members had questions and concerns, but the committee went to work ironing out differences and now all 13 pieces of legislation have been favorably reported with bipartisan support.
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that's how our committee works. that's how our chairman, ed royce, runs things. that's why we say the foreign affairs committee is the most bipartisan committee in the entire congress, and i'm proud of that as ranking member. i believe and we believe that partisanship should end at the water's edge when it comes to fighting for our country. there should be no democrats and republicans. we should be working together on this. partisanship should end at the water's edge, and that's our best how we legislate, especially when it comes to advancing american interests and security overseas. so it's rather jarring, mr. speaker, to walk onto the floor to debate the majority leader's bill. 80 pages of new sanctions on the iranian regime introduced literally in the middle of the night last week, rammed through the rules committee, brought to the floor without any chance to improve it or any input from
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the foreign affairs committee and that's a disappointment, mr. speaker, because there are plenty of us on both sides of the aisle who think we should be doing more to hold iran's leaders accountable for their bad behavior. after all, iran is the world's largest state sponsor of terrorism. iran props up the assad regime, detains americans on trumped up charges and has racked up the worst record on human rights you could imagine. congress could speak with a unified voice on these issues, but not with the bill we're considering today. i don't like the regime. everyone knows i opposed the deal with iran, and i think if we work together we can move forward on legislation but not this way. not ramming it through the rules committee so it doesn't get to the foreign affairs committee and it gets to the floor where nobody had any kind of input whatsoever. that's not how we should be unning this house, so it's not with the bill we're considering today. it would force the united states to violate our
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obligations under the nuclear deal. now, i think that's a mistake. i said before i oppose the nuclear deal. i was on the other side of the debate. we shouldn't relit gait this issue. we -- relitigate this issue. relitigate this issue. we should make sure the deal is being fully implemented. one of the ways to ensure is there a snapback of sanctions if iran violates the deal. that's why i've been saying we should re-authorize the iran sanctions act before it expires before the end of the year. but here in front of us in this 80-page bill, what is missing? a re-authorization of the iran sanctions act. that shows me that this isn't a serious undertaking. but regardless of what i think, we know that this bill has zero chance of becoming law. it most certainly won't pass
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the senate and if it did the white house would veto it. so we can only conclude, mr. speaker, this is a political exercise, and that troubles me. one of our greatest traditions in american foreign policy is that politics and partisanship stop at the water's edge. that principles has been especially true in the way congress has dealt with iran in recent years. that principle has guided our work on the foreign affairs committee. maybe that's why the foreign affairs committee was cut out of this process. we've avoided letting foreign policy turn to everyday politics. make no mistake, what we're doing today is politics, plain and simple. i worry about that precedent. i worry about what it means when iran sees us playing politics with global security, when iran's leaders see us engaged in political grandstanding instead of serious policymaking. i also worry what it means for the foreign affairs committee. our committee's jurisdiction gives us oversight of diplomacy, development, foreign
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assistance, war powers. yet, here we are developing a major, major sanctions bill that never passed through the doors of our committee room. the house voted on another iran deal that bypassed our committee as well. the house passed the defense authorization act that includes dozens of provisions that fall within the jurisdiction of the foreign affairs committee. who knows how many foreign policy riders will find their way into our spending bills this year all without the foreign affairs committee saying a word. this is a bad trend, mr. speaker. this is not regular order, which the speaker promised us. by the way, i wonder what our friends in the freedom caucus and liberty caucus say about the process that got this bill to the floor. i wonder what happened to the speaker's commitment to regular order that put the gavel in its hands in the first place. i didn't see a lot of concern over regular order as this bill was being rushed through the rules committee. so we have a legislative
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process that cut out the most experienced legislators on this issue. we have an important foreign policy concern turned into a political football. we have a bill that has no chance of becoming law. i'm starting to think this has something to do with the calendar. today when we finish our business, members will rush to the exits. but next week, many of my friends on the other side will go to cleveland for their convention. let me say with tongue and cheek i sympathize with my friends on the other side. their standard barrier has some pretty unusual ways about foreign policies. he wants to withdraw from our alliances. he thinks we ought to be neutral in the israeli-palestinian conflict and start a trade war with china. he looks to people like vladimir putin, kim jong un and saddam hussein as role models. if i were in the majority's shoes i would want to change the conversation too. this bill doesn't make the majority strong on foreign
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policy. it only makes congress appear to be divided on issues on which we cannot afford division. this bill weakens us as a congress when congress should be finding ways to make americans safer. i oppose this measure. i urge my colleagues to do the same, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i always prefer to work things out with the ranking member. working together we put three bipartisan bills on the president's desk this last week alone. this congress, mr. engel and i, working on the foreign affairs committee, have seen some 14 bills signed into law. so he is right, this isn't the norm. earlier this year, there were intense discussions with the minority on legislation to push back on iran's missile program. i compromised more than i wanted, inserting a waiver.
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we were close but at the end of the day it became clear that the white house would aggressively fight any legislation with the words iran written on it. for the white house, it is accommodation of iran at all costs, and that includes essentially giving the supreme leader a veto pen. so on this we're stuck. until the democratic leadership is ready to look past this president's legacy, i imagine we will be stuck. and lastly, i'd note that these pieces of legislation are tightly focused on iran's behavior outside of the nuclear agreement. that is the point. whether one was for the agreement or against the
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agreement, these are outside of the nuclear agreement. these bills do not undo or kill the iran deal but instead press back on the administration's promising -- promises when campaigning for their deal. this goes to the issue of what we were told, what was in the talking points on the floor of the house in terms of how this deal would be implemented and that it would not impact our ability to stop this ballistic missile testing by iran and these other abuses. so from my standpoint -- well, let me go to the gentleman from california, the majority leader, mr. kevin mccarthy, and i yield him a minute. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. mccarthy: this year marks the one-year anniversary of the signing administration iran deal. one year and the world has already become a more troubled
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place. i personally think the deal sets the dangerous precedent. strengthens the largest state sponsor of terror in the world. and gives that state sponsor of terror a pathway to nuclear weapons at some point in its future. i think all the arguments to defend this deal can't stand against the great weight of reality, including the fact that iran isn't holding up its side of the bargain. is more interested in embarrassing american military men and women and becoming a responsible nation. i understand few people disagree. however, there is something we have always agreed on. from the start. deal or no deal, good or bad deal, we always agreed to hold iran accountable for terrorism. for its development of ballistic missiles and for its human rights abuses committed against its own people. in april alone, president obama
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said we have to, and i quote, hold iran to account where it is acting in ways that are contrary to rules and norm. secretary kerry said last year, and i quote, we will never, ever stop standing up for the iranian people's rights. and treasury secretary jack lew also said last year, and i quote, we're going to continue to prosecute our unilateral sanction on things like terrorism. on things like regional destabilization and human rights. what about today? iran has conducted eight ballistic missile tests since the deal was signed. the state department's own steven mole said in may, quote, there have not been any sanctions imposed for human rights grounds since july of last year. iran continues to imprison
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journalists, american, and tortures its people. in february the administration's director of national ntelligence said, and i quote, iran continues to be the foremost state sponsors of terrorism. iran and hezbollah remain a continuing terrorist threat to u.s. interests and partners worldwide. those are the facts right here. obama aker, what has the administration done? how has the administration held iran accountable? remember, they promised and they said they would. well, the administration has done nothing. and it only gets worse. german intelligence has found
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that iran is violating, violating its pledges under this nuclear deal. iran is procuring material for nuclear weapons in what is, and i quote again, by international standards a quan at this at thisively high level. -- quan tatively high level. the report says it is safe to expect that iran will continue its intensive procurement activity. wasn't the deal supposed to stop iran from developing nuclear weapons? where is the accountability? where is the administration when they so clearly said they would hold them accountable? where is the bipartisanship and the sanctions now? now, i understand the other side, mr. speaker, some will accuse republicans of engaging in purely a partisan exercise and never intended to work with our friend on the other side of the aisle. you know that's just not true. you know for the last six months
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we worked with the other side of the aisle. we worked in a bipartisan manner with the chairman on both sides. -- the y time we got to deal with the missiles and the ballistic sanctions against them, the white house would thwart any bipartisan effort. why are we here today? because we're six months -- in six months we found every reason to say no. for six months he went back on every word that was said about holding them accountable when the facts stood before us. frankly, mr. speaker, i don't understand opposition to this bill. we're simply holding iran accountable exactly what the administration said they would do. you know, we have had tremendous leaders in this country. and we have learned the lessons time and again. ronald reagan taught us this
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lesson that peace without freedom is meaningless. human nature craves that we all have peace. but you cannot secure peace without freedom. we have watched in history where leaders have failed. chamberlain, peace for our time. but there was no freedom. ronald reagan had the samedy lema. -- same dilemma late in his second term in iceland where he stood across gorbachev trying to negotiate a reduction in nuclear weapon. he was securing almost everything he asked for. but gorbachev asked for one more item, he asked that america would end their s.d.i. program. reagan didn't say no. he said, we'll share it with you so the world could be safe. but gorbachev said no. reagan had a decision to make.
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he could have signed that deal and i'm sure the lee eheat would probably give him the nobel peace prize, other presidents have won them. but he realized there was no freedom in that agreement. so he got up, he held the soviet union accountable, and he walked away. had he not, would the berlin wall have collapsed? had he not, would the soviet union have collapsed? words have meaning and words have consequences. the quotes from this administration and from around the world was to hold iran accountable. that's what's happening today. mr. speaker, there's going to be some members in this chamber that will sit back and say, but it didn't happen just the way i wanted to before it came to the floor.
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i don't want you to look your grandchildren in the eye and explain to them why we don't have freedom in the world. i want you to look your grandchildren in the eye and say you stood up. you stood up for the words and what this meant -- what that meant when we hold iran accountable. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california, mr. mccarthy, yields back. the gentleman from california, mr. royce, reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: thank you, mr. speaker. i now yield three minutes to the gentleman from rhode island, mr. cicilline, a very respected member of the foreign affairs commee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from rhode island is recognized for three minutes. mr. cicilline: i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, i rise in opposition to h.r. 5631. nothing is more important to our national security and just in the middle east than continuing to prevent a nuclear iran while at the same time effectively containing iran's influence and confronting their destabilizing activities in the region. iran's ongoing ballistic missile program and continued support
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for terrorism constitute an exy tension threat to our allies in the middle east, including israel. their blatant disregard for human rights, we can hear the echoes of nazi germany, soviet russia, and other failed totalitarian regimes that now reside in the dust bin of history. it is imperative we do more to exert pressure on the iranian regime to change their behavior, including meaningful sanctions for human rights and ballistic missiles violations and terrorism. but any steps that we take cannot undermine the progress we already made over the past year to deny iran a nuclear weapons program. the joint comprehensive plan of action is working. since its implementation iran has continues mantled 2/3 of its nuclear capacity, and removed the core of the iraq heavy water reactor and rendered its only source of weapons grade plutonium permanently useless. iran is now complying with the
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most comprehensive transparency and monitoring regime ever negotiated in the new england lar age. the -- new england lar age. it is a historic point, a big change in terms of the direction that iran was headed and wait we saw things. there is no question that the world is safer today and our allies in the middle east, especially in slar, are more secure because the jcpoa has denied iran the opportunity to develop a neff. we can and should -- a nuclear weapon. we can and should continue to build on this work and confront the iranian regime's behavior without undermining the jcpoa. we should impose sanctions for ballistic missiles, human rights violations, and terrorism. but these sanctions must be carefully drawn. must be carefully written to protect the agreement that denies iran a nuclear weapon. but the bill we're voting on today does not do this.
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as a result, it won't make us safer. it will undermine every single achievement we have made over the past year. it will impose insurmountable limits on the president's ability to work with our allies around the world and implement effective sanctions on iranian human rights abusers and ballistic missiles program and their support for terrorism. if this bill becomes law, it would immediately put iran back on a path to develop a nuclear weapon. i sit on the house foreign affairs committee. i have attended dozens and dozens of hearings on iran. i have heard hours and hours of testimony from expert witnesses an how we can effect change in iran, but no one asked for our input on this bifment it was introduced by the republican leadership in the -- on this bill. it was introduced by the republican leadership in the dead of night and came straight to the floor. i ask for an additional 30 second. mr. engel: i give the gentleman an additional minute. mr. cicilline: let's call it for what it is. a cynical proposal that's
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designed to score political points in an election year. even at the expense of our national security interest. mr. speaker, we need serious thoughtful strategies to confront the iranian regime. not partisan politics. the stakes are too high. i urge my colleagues to protect this agreement that prevents iran from having a nuclear weapon. to work with us in a bipartisan way to impose sanctions that are carefully drawn. the full participation of the foreign affairs committee, and reject this bill in its current form w that i thank the gentleman. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york reserves. gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield myself three minutes, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman virginia tech. mr. royce: -- the gentleman is recognized. mr. royce: mr. speaker, i just would counter with some observations. first, the nuclear deal does not dismantle key aspects of iran's nuclear program. that, in fact, is it's fatal
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flaw. at its essence this agreement traded permanent comprehensive sanction relief for temporary limited constraints on iran's nuclear program. and under this deal, iran will keep much of its nuclear infrastructure and continue to develop advanced center fugse, gaining the ability to -- centrifuges, gaining the ability to produce nuclear fuel on an industrial scale. due to the deal's fatal flaw, that's the sunset clause, the ayatollah won't even have to cheat to be just steps away from a nuclear weapon. all he has to do is wait 10 or 15 years until the deal expires. that said, we cannot be sure that iran is truly living up to its obligations under this agreement. i heard the assertion that it was. it's certainly not. in its annual report published last month the german
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intelligence reports the illegal proliferation sensitive procurement activity -- activities by iran in germany, registered by the federal office for the protection of the constitution, persisted, persisted in 2015, and what is even by international standards a quantitatively high level. i'm going to continue to quote from that report. this holds true in particular with regards to items which can be used in the field of nuclear technology. if this deal is working, why is iran secretly violating it? why is iran buying nuclear technology? point is that these activities we're curtailing aren't related to the nuclear deal, and that's the other point i would make. unlike the administration, i'm not willing to be held hostage
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to the nuclear deal. doing nothing as iran develops icbm's in defiance of u.n. security council resolutions. we realize what's happening here, i hope, as the ayatollah n a weekly basis leads these chants to death to israel, death to america, and asserts that it's every military's man's responsibility to figure out how to mass-produce intercontinental ballistic missiles. when he's talking about intercontinental, that means between continents. that means between there and here. . death to america is not a confusing thing that we might be misinterpretting. and it's worth noting that in the last week it surfaced that iran continued, continued trying to illegally procure
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nuclear equipment. so thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california's time has expired. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: i yield five minutes to the gentleman from california, mr. price. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for five minutes. mr. price: mr. speaker, i rise in strong opposition to this and the other two bills before the house this week regarding iran. all of which would weaken our national security, our international standing and all of which the president has rightly threatened to veto. if there is a silver lining in this debate, it is that the majority has given us an opportunity to acknowledge the one-year anniversary of the joint comprehensive plan of action which has made the world safer by severely constraining iran's nuclear activities and subjecting them to unprecedented international oversight. yet, instead of celebrating this landmark achievement, the
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majority is seeking to undo it. 5631 119, h.r. 4992, h.r. collectively would deny iran even the limited access to foreign investment and other meaningful incentives that encourage compliance with the jcpoa. these are just the latest in a series of republican efforts to undermine this historic agreement negotiated with the world's major powers. since the deal was finalized, republicans have tried again and again and again to undermine, not just the jcpoa, but also the credibility of the president of the united states on the international stage. it appears the iran nuclear agreement has become the obamacare of foreign policy. what i mean is that republicans proclaim it a failure repeatedly despite its objective success. they called for its immediate repeal without offering any viable alternatives despite the potentially disastrous consequences of such action,
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and they continue to clutter the congressional calendar with so-called message votes about iran instead of addressing the major issues facing our nation. now, these legislative antics continue even though opponents of the jcpoa know full well that strong sanctions on iran remain in place, targeting the country's human rights violations, ballistic missile development and support of terrorism. now, the bill before us, 5631, would impose additional mandatory sanctions on iran for the same violations. there's no one in this chamber about to let iran off the hook with its egregious human rights violations, its proliferation of terrorism, and ballistic missile technology. and my friends know if a violation of the jcpoa were to occur, we could put sanctions like these in place immediately. so why are we doing this bill now? must we conclude that our
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colleagues are interested in unraveling one of president obama's signature accomplishments than they are with the facts of the matter? let's look at the facts. because of this agreement, an iran nuclear agreement is not an imminent threat to the united states or our allies, including israel. because of this agreement, the breakout time for iran to develop enough weapons grade material went from two to three months to a year or more. the international community has 24/7 access to iran's nuclear sites, and we possess an enforcement mechanism to verify iran's compliance. by all objective accounts, iran has upheld its end of the bargain and it's vital we uphold ours. this isn't just my opinion. this week a bipartisan group of more than 75 national security experts sent a letter to the president stating that, quote, compliance ained in with its commitments and i ask
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unanimous consent that this letter be included in the congressional record in its entirety. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. price: this agreement's too important. the stakes are too high to treat this issue as just another flitplithcal football. the safety and security of the united states, of israel and of the region depend on the successful implementation and diligent enforcement of the jcpoa. instead of scoring political points or denying the president a significant achievement, we should be working together in a bipartisan fashion to ensure the agreement's success. we should be working together to explore ways to enhance coordination and cooperation with israel and the international community to address unacceptable iranian behavior. such as support for hezbollah and abuse of human rights. and yet we find ourselves here. one year after the agreement's announcement still dealing with
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obamacare-style gamesmanship. it's beneath this institution. the world is watching. we may think a bill has no chance of being signed into law doesn't matter, but to the leaders of china or russia or iran, it sends a signal from our country of hesitation and disunitity. i urge my colleagues to vote against this bill and any bill with similar intent and focus instead on ensuring the success of the jcpoa and reinforcing the agreement's role in making the world a safer place. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield three -- tes to mr. zelleden of mr. zeldin of new york, mr. lee zeldin, a valuable member of the committee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three minutes. mr. zeldin: thank you, mr. speaker. it's a little insulting to hear the remarks that were just made as if any objection not toeing
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the line of this -- towing the line of this arrangement is partisan politics. the gentleman may have misspoke when he suggested that the iran nuclear deal was signed. i would offer that the iran nuclear deal hasn't been signed. the president has acknowledged, not only is this not a treaty, secretary kerry, when he was before the house foreign affairs committee, says it's not even an executive agreement. it is a political commitment. a signed letter from the state department saying that this is an unsigned political commitment. now, we're allowed to have objections to that. i would suggest that the best interest of national security is to join in support of this bill and putting that over party politics. i rise today in support of the iran accountability act, introduced by house majority leader kevin mckarty and also want to commend chairman ed royce for all of his incredibly valuable leadership, chairing
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the house foreign affairs committee, and also to the ranking member, eliot engel, who i know is deeply passionate about u.s. security and the relationship with -- and accountability with iran and strengthening our relationship with israel. i know his heart is absolutely in the right place. so it's not a difficult position for all the democratic colleagues who voted against the iran nuclear agreement. i know that takes an incredible amount of courage to stand up to a president of your own party. you did it for all of the right reasons, putting national security over party politics. that wasn't partisanship. it was actually a bipartisan vote in this house to disapprove of that iran nuclear deal. democrats who decided to put american security first voted against the iran nuclear deal, an unsigned political commitment. why were the iranians at the table? sanctions relief. not because we asked nicely, not because they want to be
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good world citizens. because they wanted the money. then we gave them the money. they got through their election. by the way, those who say that the most moderate members were elected, that's discounting the fact that 12,000 most moderate members weren't even allowed access to the ballots. there were only the hardliners left on the ballot. so the iranians get the money, they get past the elections and here we are today and you are insulting us in this chamber by saying that any concern that we have if it doesn't tow the president's party line is partisan politics. i don't care who the president is, whether it's republican or democrat, this one or the next one. the fact is what brought the iranians to the table, the leverage was the sanctions relief and the sanctions relief that they received is now gone. so as they test their intercontinental ballistic missile in violation of
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international law, they unjustly imprison americans, as they commit their human rights abuses, everything that they are doing today we take exception with and we are cting on and that's why i rise -- thank you, mr. speaker. everything that we come to this well on this day to vote in favor of this legislation and chairman royce's legislation, three pieces of legislation to hold the iranians accountability, it's the -- accountable, it's the fact if we want to get the iranians back on the table, we need to put the leverage on the table. they are not going to come back if we ask nicely. they have not changed who they are. they are not good world citizens, and i am not going to sit here and allow the script of a white house taxpayer funded fiction writer ben rhodes go to the media to spread whatever false lies and narratives help sell the iran nuclear deal. we are here to represent the
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american constituents. this is not about the american president and his legacy. this is about american security and doing what is best and doing what is right for our constituents and the american public. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york yields back. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: yes. it's now my pleasure to yield two minutes to the gentleman from michigan, the ranking member of the ways and means committee, mr. levin, two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for two minutes. is more this bill than deeply troubling. you talk about bipartisanship and you come forthwith a bill that completely breaks it down. this issue is too essential to become a total tool of partisan jockeying. our relationship with israel is
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too vital to become a total political play thing. i refer, as my colleague from north carolina did, to the statement of 75 national security leaders, i quote, dear, mr. president. on the first anniversary of the joint comprehensive plan of action with iran, americans should be proud of your leadership in bringing about this landmark diplomatic agreement. as a result of the jcpoa, all pathways to an iranian nuclear weapon have been blocked, thereby providing greater security to our friends and partners in the region and to the world. from november, 2013, when the interim nuclear agreement was reached until today, iran has
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remained in compliance with its commitments as verified by regular reports of the international atomic energy agency. brent by 75, including skokraf. why don't you totally partisan republicans approaching a convention and a presidential race listen to respectable, very much respected people within your own party? instead, you're thumbing your nose like this at them and at all those who endeavor to bring about an effective policy regarding nuclear weaponry. today's -- i ask for an additional 30 seconds. mr. engel: i grant the gentleman an additional 30 seconds. . levin: today is simply
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political cha canery. this deserves better without the majority leader coming here without notice, really, and putting forth a resolution that does nothing but harm what used to be a centerpiece of foreign policy, bipartisanship when it comes to the middle east and the security of israel. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan yields back. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california. mr. royce: i yield two minutes to the gentleman from georgia, mr. carter. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for two minutes. mr. carter: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank the gentleman for yielding. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of h.r. 5631, to hold iran accountable for its state sponsorship of terrorism and for its human rights abuses. as a member of congress, i believe one of our most important duties is to ensure that americans continue to remain secure from other
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countries who wish to harm us. last year, president obama entered into an agreement with iran which now allows iran to advance their nuclear energy program. in turn, the president has allowed sanctions against iran to be removed even though entities of the iranian government continues to conduct human rights violations. in addition, iran continues to refine their ballistic missile program and support terrorism which represents a serious threat to the united states and our allies. it should be the clear intent that continued use of sanctions against iran is necessary to ensure iran does not have the resources necessary to harm even eliminate our country our its allies. h.r. 5631 does this. it ensures that the policy of this country to take aggressive action against iran to prevent the development of weapons that
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could harm our country or allies. we must also continue to ensure that it is the polcy of this country that efforts be taken to prevent human rights violation by any contry. i would like to thank my colleagues, majority leader mccarthy, for big this bill to e floor and i encourage my colleagues to support this measure. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. engel: mr. speaker, may i ask how much time we have on both sides? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california has 13 1/2 minutes remaining. and the gentleman from new york has 12 minutes. mr. engel: thank you. i now yield three minutes to the gentleman from florida, a very hardworking and respected member of the foreign affairs committee, mr. ted deutsch. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. deutch: i thank the speaker and i thank my friend for yielding. is week we mark the one-year
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anniversary, this week, we approach the one-year anniversary of the joint comprehensive plan of action. the jcpoa. the agreement negotiated by the p-5 plus one countries. one year later, one year later iran remains far outside of the community of responsible countries. iran continues to sponsor terrorism around the region. it funds and supports the murderous assad regime. it's spouted anti-sem metic vitriol. it denies basic human rights to its citizens, and it unlawfully detains american citizens. iran has still not returned my constituent, robert leavenson, who wept missing in iran in 2007 and is now the longest held american hostage. my friends on the other side of the aisle know that, and i his d chairman royce for diligence in looking for ways to
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strengthen our sanctions regime and to vigilantly enforce the iran nuclear deal in order to keep the pressure on iran. iran's actions have not rehadn'ted despoot the agreement. they have explicitly and repeatedly violated u.n. security council resolutions. in addition, recent intelligence reports from germany exposed that iran sought technology related to the development of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons. there is a lot that needs to be done to keep the pressure on iran. for all these reasons congress needs to re-authorize the iran sanction act, the law that actually serves as the foundation for our sanction'spolicy. we have to pass new sanctions to address iran's repeated ballistic missile test. we have to [down on iran's financial support for terrorism. these are items that have always enjoyed broad bipartisan support. all of the areas that iran is
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doing harm throughout the region, support for terrorism, violation of the human rights of their own people, ballistic missile tests, everything that falls outside of the nuclear deal we should be working together to strengthen with this bipartisan support but rushing through legislation that is designed to undermine the jcpoa and put the united states in violation of our commitments under the jcpoa. not only fail to punish iran's malfeasance, which is our goal and it's a shared goal, but it weakens americans' ability to lead a global effort against iran's destabilizing activities throughout the world. we can't do this on our own. we need to work with our allies. we need to lead our allies. that's the role that the united states has always played. mr. speaker, i did not support the iran nuclear agreement, but it is in effect and it must be
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enforced with vigilance. e have -- 30 more seconds. mr. engel: jackson lee 30 seconds. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman virginia tech. mr. deutch: i thank my -- the jecked. mr. deutch: i thank my fren. we need to keep pressure so long ballistic missiles. failure of the united states to uphold the deal will only weaken, i repeat for my colleagues who share my commitment to standing up to iran, it will only weaken our efforts to lead the international community in taking strong action to counter iran's actions both under and . tside of the jcpoa because these three bills this week which have been rushed to the floor without having the opportunity to discuss them, debate them, and develop broad bipartisan support in ways that will not jeopardize our role in
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the jcpoa, weaken our ability to lead. that's why i oppose them and urge my colleagues to oppose them as well. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new york reserves. gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: i continue to reserve . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. engel: thank you, mr. speaker. it's now my pleasure to yield five minutes to the gentleman from maryland, mr. hoyer, our democratic whip. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland is recognized for five minths -- five minutes. mr. hoyer: mr. speaker, i regret that i rise to oppose this bill. i have historically and repeatedly worked in a bipartisan fashion to bring gills bills to this floor -- to bring bills to this floor that was supported by both parties as it relates to the security of israel. this bill comes to the floor as we take stock of the joint comprehensive plan of action, the iran nuclear deal. this bill disappointingly was
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itten without any input from democrats. or any committee or through regular order. i've not acting in a bipartisan manner. we're missing the opportunity to send an important message to iran of our fed stass resolve -- of our steadfast resolve in how old holding our commitments under the jcpoa and applicable us it us laws -- u.s. laws and resolutions. we need to remember it was toughness born from bipartisan unity that brought iran to the table in the first place. that again is what we will be required to ensure its full compliance. as much as iran has mostly complied with the letter of the deal that has pushed the limits when it comes to its spirit. one of my major concerns about the deal from a year ago remains and it is that the deal is limited in scope only to iran's nuclear activities. it does not cover the other
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areas in which iran has proven to be a dangerous and threatening actor. u.n. security council resolution 2231, mr. speaker, which implemented the jcpoa called for iran to halt its ballistic missile program. instead, iran has continued to develop and test missiles that could carry a nuclear payload. there vs. already been reports that that it's attempting to get the technology in violation of a u.n. resolution. iran's sponsorship of global terror has continued unabated. and its arms and fighters stream into syria, exacerbating the instability there and threatening the region security. hamas and hezbollah continue to threat lateral with iranian arms and financial support. and iran's leaders continue to call for the end of the jewish state of israel. that's why even as iran has
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received sanctions relief through the jcpoa, it was always understood that we would need and be able to increase pressure on iran with additional sanctions targeting its ballistic missile program and other destabilizing actions. we must not allow iran to violate the nuclear deal. if iran does not feel that it is sufficiently benefitling from the nuclear deal, frankly that's because it's it's outdated banking system are continuing to deter foreign investment. iran and the world needs to understand that it's not america's job to fix the problems that iran has created for itself. that's why as iran continues to flaunt its obligations and sponsor terrorism around the world, its leaders must know with certainty that there will
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be real consequences for the united states and our allies for those actions. i am opposing this bill and urging that democrats and republicans, and my friend mr. royce has done that repeatedly throughout his leadership of the foreign affairs committee. return to our successful bipartisan partnership as we have in the past to re-authorize the iran sanctions act as soon as possible and then work toward enacting sanctions against targeting iran's ballistic missile program. come back here with legislation that sends a powerful message to iran that there is no delay between the parties and congress when it comes to our shared resolve that iran must abandon its sponsorship of terror and its ballistic missile program and comply fully with the jcpoa.
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my friends, chairman royce, ranking member engel, and my colleagues our commitment to israel and international peace and security demands no less. bipartisan on which israel has relied and the message we sent was stronger, firmer, and more effective. let us defeat this partisan legislation and return to the bipartisan table. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland yields back. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: yes, mr. speaker. the goal of the iran accountability act, the goal of this measure we're talking about today is not to force the administration to violate its flawed iran deal.
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the goal here, the goal of this bill, is to call upon the president to uphold his pledge to remain vigilant and respond to iran's continued support for its ballistic missile program. and terrorism, and its human rights abuses, ok. the sanctions in this bill would force the administration to act decisively with respect to the twin threats of iran's effort to develop and aguirre ballistic missiles and to support -- to aguirre ballistic missiles and -- acquire-- aguirre ballistic missiles and to support nuclear weapons. the wholesale retreat for multilateral sanctions regarding ballistic missiles. if the administration was actually involved in enforcing this, this legislation would not
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be necessary. last july, second of state john kerry testified that the u.n. security council resolution, 2231, which implemented the deal, contains the exact same language prohibiting iran from developing ballistic weapons as the previous resolution. that sounded pretty encouraging to us. oh, if only it were true. if only it had been true. the text of the resolutions appears to suggest is quite the opposite. in unscr 2231, iran is nonblindingly called upon, that's the word, called upon to refrain from developing ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear warheads. by contrast the original resolution blindingly stated that iran shall not, shall not
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develop ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear warheads. here is where we have to focus, my friends. here's where we have to focus. this past spring iranian foreign minister mommed zarif bragged on this very point and here are his words, he said that he negotiated a loophole. he negotiated a loophole that would enable the regime to continue to develop nuclear capable ballistic missiles. that is why we're here debating this today. what did he say? the new resolution, he claimed, these are his words, doesn't call upon iran not to testify ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear warheads, no. it calls upon iran not to test ballistic missiles that were designed to be capable. and he adds, that word took me about seven months to negotiate. so everybody knew what it meant. as such, iran could develop a
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ballistic missile capable of carrying a nuclear warhead, but then claim it was not designed for that specific purpose. later reports indicated that the united states and its european llies issued a joint letter. remember, iran has now fired off eight tests, the last test on the ballistic weapons, on the side of them, said death to rael in farsi and in hebrew, and that joint letter stating that iran's recent ballistic missile tests were, what was the word used by the united states now? were inconsistent with rather than a violation of. -- a violation of the resolution. which is it? . ultimately the u.n. fails to imowes any sanctions despite iran's missile tests.
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no, during this entire debate on the floor of this house, the talking points indicated that iran would be prevented from developing and using and testing these ballistic missiles for the next eight years. now we find out that apparently the administration intends to allow this continued buildup of their capabilities of an intercontinental ballistic missile. thus, what this legislation seeks to restore is the necessary deterrent effect with respect to ballistic missiles and correct the administration's debilitating miss takes -- mistakes. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. engel: i now yield one minute to the gentleman from virginia, mr. connolly, a very respected and hardworking member of the foreign affairs committee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia is recognized for one minute.
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mr. connolly: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank my good friend from new york, mr. eliot engel. i rise in opposition to h.r. 5631, the so-called iran accountability act. the majority has decided on its own, without any bipartisanship, to coop traditional action to counter iran, by fast tracking legislation that would undermine not only the iran nuclear agreement, but fracture the very delegate coalition, international coalition, that allowed us to reverse the nuclear development in iran. i guess that's something that happens when amateurs write a bill without any foreign policy background. this bill was drafted, as mr. hoyer indicated, with no input from the minority, and was brought to the floor under a closed rule. how can anyone, much less our adversary, iran, take this seriously? if the majority really cared about countering iran, it would safeguard long standing
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bipartisan consensus and bring to the floor a clean re-authorization of the iran sanctions act, which i would support and i'm sure so would most people on my side of the aisle. instead the majority is scrambling, 15 more seconds. mr. engel: 15 more seconds to the gentleman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. connolly: instead the majority is scrambling to pass at the last hour of this part of our session, just before a seven-week recess, to pass this bill before us today. it's a farce, it's a dangerous gambit by the majority to play election-year politics at the expense of u.s. bipartisan foreign policy. i urge rejection of this ill-considered bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from new york reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: mr. speaker, i'm going to reserve the right to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is prepared to close. the gentleman from new york is recognized.
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mr. engel: thank you. i'll close and use as much time as i might consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. engel: thank you. you know, the question is not whether iran is a good player. iran is not a good player. the question is, what should be our response to it? it's not a question of whether the iranian regime is good or bad. of course it's bad. i oppose the iran deal. the question is how do we react to it? mr. speaker, we had an opportunity to work on meaningful legislation that would have held iran's feet to the fire and ensured the nuclear deal was being fully, fairly implemented. it could have been a re-authorization of the iran sanctions act, it could have been another bipartisan approach. instead we're going to vote on this bill, which will pass mostly on partisan lines, and then skip town for seven weeks. i think that's a shame. because i don't think we've done our job. and there's no job more important than protecting america's security.
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ramming through a partisan bill -- rams through partisan bills that don't -- ramming through partisan bills that don't stand a chance of becoming law is irresponsible. it diminishes congress' role in making foreign policy. so i hope when we return from the break, we can hit the reset button on the way we deal with these issues. i think it's important for us to work together in a bipartisan fashion, as i have said so many times on this floor, it has been a pleasure working with chairman royce on the committee in a bipartisan fashion. give the committee a chance to formulate a bill that will hold iran's feet to the fire. it's a terrible regime. it's a bloody regime. we're all united on both sides of the aisle of wanting to confront that regime. the question is how to do it. you don't do it by ramming through a partisan bill. you do it by working in a bipartisan fashion. so for now we should reject this bill, go back to the drawing board, and work together to confront the iranian murderous regime,
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they're a regime that we need to confront. nobody disagrees on that, on both sides of the aisle. the question is, should we do it together? let's do it together. the foreign affairs committee has been a bipartisan mecca of how congress should work. let's go back to that. particularly with foreign policy. let's go back to that. so i urge my colleagues to reject the bill. we've got good people on both sides of the aisle, we all want to see the same thing. let's put our heads together and let's come up with a consensus and confront iran. reject the bill. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. royce: the first point i would make, mr. speaker, is that under the agreement, iran has kept much of its nuclear infrastructure, it continues to develop advanced centrifuges, it continues to gain the ability to produce nuclear feel
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-- fuel on an industrial scale. and this means, if we're looking at the long haul on enforcement and challenges ahead, the ayatollah won't even have to cheat to be just steps away from a nuclear weapon. when the clock runs out. and in the meantime, tens of billions of dollars in sanctions relief is now starting to flow to iran's islamic revolutionary guard. the assurances, you know, that we have been given, these underlying concerns by the way is why so many americans -- members, including many from the foreign affairs committee, opposed the administration's deal with iran in the first place, but these long-term problems now of iran beginning to use that money for terrorist activity, for the irgc and for support for hezbollah, is what
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is prompting our effort now to try to get some kind of an enforcement. not necessarily on the deal itself, but on original assurances we have been given by the president. for example, when he presented this deal he claimed that the united states would remain vigilant in countering iran's sponsorship of terrorism. its support for proxies who destabilize the middle east. its threats against america's friends and allies like israel. you know, some of us supported the nuclear deal with iran, some of us didn't. but regardless, i don't think any of us thought that iran should be given carte blanche to continue and even escalate its dangerous hostility in that region. and its hostility to us. and to our allies. and its hostility to the iranian people, frankly. which is another issue. that's not what the administration told us last year. and it makes sense to do all we
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can to check this very dangerous trend in iranian activity. the problem is that the administration refuses to do this. this is what drives us to bring the bill to the floor. the administration refuses to negotiate, as i said before, on anything with the word iran in it. so that's why we're here. and i would ask my colleagues who oppose this measure, we were told, all right, we're going to hold them on human rights. how many iranian officials has the administration designated for human rights abuses since the negotiations ended? the answer so that is zero -- to that is zero. there have been no human rights designations in the past year. talk about walking on egg shells. despite the fact that iran's minister of justice and head of the judiciary, they are clear human rights violators, but
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they have not been designated, as the number of executions inside of iran go up, iranian regional aggression has increased exponentially since this agreement was reached. the administration's been reluctant to act decisively on that. in march the centcom commander testified that iran has become more aggressive in the days since the agreement. similarly, our director of national intelligence says, iran, in his words, the foremost state sponsor of terrorism, continues to exert its influence in regional crisises in the middle east through the international revolutionary guard corps, the quds force, its terrorist partner, lebanese hezbollah, and its proxy groups. it also provides military and economic aid to its allies in the region. iran and hezbollah remain a continuing terrorist threat to
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u.s. interests and partnerships worldwide. now, if the irgc ends up with $100 billion because it's the international revolutionary guard corps that in fact nationalized most of the companies inside of iran, if they get their hands on this terrorist f this sponsoring organization continues its proliferation, then hezbollah is going to be the primary beneficiary of the sanctions relief. we were assured that steps were going to be taken on that point. that was supposed to be our end goal, right? secretary kerry even admitted after the implementation day. he said, i think that some of it will end up in the hands of
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the irgc or other entities, some of which are labeledtivities -- terrorists -- labeled terrorists. you know, to some degree, i'm not going to sit here and tell you that every component of that can be prevented. ok, it can't all be prevented. but surely some of it can. the secretary of state was basically saying that there was nothing the u.s. could do to prevent the irgc and terrorists from benefiting exponentially from sanctions relief. no wonder iran's efforts to destabilize the region are picking up steam. consider iran's smuggling of weapons to militants throughout the region. according to the state department, iran arms hezbollah with advanced long range iranian-manufactured missiles in violation of the u.n. security council resolution. we're trying to do something to at least say stop that. just days after the announcement of the jcpoa, here's what hezbollah leader asserted. that that deal would not stand in the way of iranian support for hezbollah. how right he was. ecause in june, 2016, he boasted that all of hezbollah's
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weapons and rockets came from the islamic republic of iran, 150,000 rockets pointed at our ally israel, and now they say they're going to be able to target those with g.p.s. technology. aren't we going to stand in the way of that? similarly, iran continues to destabilize our partners in the gulf. they already overthrew the government in yemen with their support for the shi'ites there. particularly also in bahrain, where they carry out a low-level u.s. is as well, i beg -- insurgency as well, i beg to differ with the secretary of state. there is something we can do. we can act on the administration's stated commitment to our allies and hold iran's feet to the fire on this issue. the iran deal should not come at the cost of the domestic security of our regional allies, but we could have the original deal and we could still enforce what we were told
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on this floor would be enforced. for eight years they were not supposed to be proliferating or developing ballistic missiles. for five years they were not supposed to be transferring to hezbollah additional capability -- weapons capability. now we're turning a blind eye. now we're walking on egg shells with respect to their treatment of their own people, as the human rights and the executions become worse. and as they capture two more or hold two more americans. frankly, that is why this legislation is before us on the house floor. i yield back the balance of my time. i urge an aye vote. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california yields back. all time for debate has expired. pursuant to house resolution 19, the previous question is -- 819, the previous question is ordered on the bill. the question is on engrossment and third reading of the bill.
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those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. third reading. the clerk: a bill to hold iran accountable for its state sponsorship of terrorism and other threatening activities and for its human rights abuses and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on the passage of the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. mr. royce: mr. speaker, on that i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this question will be postponed. the chair lays before the house the following enrolled bill. the clerk: senate 524, an act to authorize the attorney general and secretary of health and human services to award grants
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to address the prescription opioid abuse and heroin use crisis, and for other purposes. for eaker pro tempore: what purpose does the gentleman from california, mr. royce, seek recognition? mr. royce: mr. speaker, pursuant o house resolution 819, i call up the bill h.r. 4992 and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 4992, a bill to dodd phi regulations relating to transfer of funds involving iran, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to house resolution 819, the bill is cre. the gentleman from california, mr. royce, and the gentlewoman from california, ms. waters, each will control 30 minutes. the chair now recognizes thea. california, mr. royce. mr. royce: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to evise and extend their remarks and to include extraneous material. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. royce: mr. speaker, thank
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you. so i rise in support of h.r. 4992. this bill would prohibit trade with iran in dollars, and that's the world's top currency. the iranian access to the u.s. financial system here is what's at risk. and when selling this iran deal to congress, treasury secretary lew testified unequivocally that, and i'm going to quote him, i'm going to quote our treasury secretary, iranian banks will not be able to clear u.s. dollars through new york, hold account relationships with u.s. financial institutions, or enter into financing agreements with u.s. banks. he testified, and i quote, iran, in other words, will continue to be denied access to the world's
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largest financial and commercial market. the secretary strongly denied the administration was giving away the store to iran. we were told that the restrictions on iran's access to the u.s. dollar were key to pushing back on iran's terrorism and on its missile proliferation. for the past six months, as the iranian supreme leader has ratcheted up complaints about the pace of sanction leaf, the obama administration has shifted to making sure iran gets relief. that's the theme. indeed, the state department has taken its advocacy for iran to a new and disturbing level by trying to persuade major nonu.s. banks that doing iran related business is not only permitted but is actually encouraged. as one witness told the committee in may, the united
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states is acting as the business development and trade promotion authority of the islamic republic of iran. and the administration is looking for ways for iran to be able to conduct business in dollars. when challenged before the house financial services committee in march, secretary lew would not answer authoritatively whether the united states may offer iran the ability to access on shore or offshore dollar clearing facilities to allow for dollar denominated transactions and ease iran's ability to trade internationally. the ayatollah wants this form of sanctions relief to essentially declare that iran is open for business without ending its support for terrorism and ending its proliferation of missiles. mr. speaker, the united states should not be offering additional special exemptions to
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assist iran with access to dollars while iran remains a leading state sponsor of terror, subject to serious sanctions. notably the treasury department's designation of iran as a primary money laundering concern remains, and that's a recognition that any financial transaction with iran risks supporting the regime's ongoing illicit activities. that's part of the reason that the financial action task force which sets the global anti-money laundering standards, has warned of, in their words, the terrorist financing risk emanating from iran and the threat this poses to the international financial system, unquote. instead of granting such a significant unilateral concession of iranian access to dollarized transactions, this
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legislation requires a reciprocal step by tehran. an must stop its support for terrorism, one of the top concerns that administration officials promised that they were going to address using its remaining sanctions after the nuclear agreement. and this is an approach that all members should support. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california reserves. the gentlelady from california, ms. waters, is recognized. ms. waters: thank you very much, mr. chairman. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. waters: mr. chairman, this week republicans have made it a top priority to bypass regular order and rush a number of measures to the floor as part of their reckless and politically driven iran week agenda that would put the united states in
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breach of our commitments under the iran nuclear deal. concluded a year ago, the iran nuclear deal known as the joint comprehensive plan of action, or the jcpoa, will prevent iran from obtaining a nuclear bomb for the foreseeable future. the agreement imposed tough restrictions on and heavy monitoring of iran's nuclear program in exchange for nuclear related sanctions relief. to date, iran has upheld its end of the deal and i believe we have a responsibility to uphold our commitments as well. the bill before us today, h.r. 4992, is just one of the measures under consideration this week that is aimed squarely at prohibiting iran from experiencing the sanctions relief promised under the
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agreement, that is the jcpoa. as part of the iran nuclear deal, the u.s. committed to lift secondary sanctions to allow iran to conduct banks transactions outside of the united states -- banking transactions outside of the united states in return for iran meeting its nuclear related commitments, which was verified by the international atomic agency. h.r. 44992 this bill would put the -- 4 the 92, this bill would put the united states in violation of the jcpoa by applying the secondary sanctions that had been lifted as part of the agreement of the moreover, the bill would undermine the good faith commitment made by all parties under the jcpoa, to uphold the letter, the spirit, and intent of the agreement and to refrain from action that would undermine its successful
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implementation. by denying the reef leaf -- relief we committed to provide under the deal, we throw the continued viability of the jcpoa into question. thereby abandoning the best chance we have at preventing iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. in addition to violating our commitment under the jcpoa, this bill does nothing to provide additional protection for the united states financial system. the bill's proponents ignore the fact that our primary embargo on iran remains in effect and that the administration is already taking robust measures to protect the united states financial system from access by iran. to the extent this bill is motivated by rumors that the administration is preparing to grant iran new access to the u.s. financial system beyond the
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scope of jcpoa, i would point out that the administration has said that these rumors are entirely unfounded. the administration has also made clear that it has no intention of reinstating the uturn authorization which permits foreign firms to use the u.s. as a pass-through for facilitating transaction was iran or give iran access to the united states financial system. the president has officially stated in a he will veto this bill -- that he will veto this bill and any other legislation that prevents the successful implementation of the iran nuclear deal. we must ask ourselves if we undermine this deal that we made, what comes next? more sanctions? it's important to remember that the harsh nuclear related sanctions that were previously in place did not prevent iran from continuing to pursue a nuclear capability.
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a united states-led attack on iran? i sincerely hope that we would work diligently to avoid this option. lastly, i'm opposed to this bill being brought directly to the floor without going through regular order. we did not hold a hearing. we did not hold a mark up. and financial services committee on this legislation. denying members the opportunity to fully qur its implications. we cannot resignificant anything on our commitment to uphold the jcpoa, a significant effort to prevent iran from obtaining a nuclear bomb, violating the agreement would not only undermine u.s. national security, but also our ability to lead on any international negotiations aimed at peace in the future. so i would urge my colleagues to oppose h.r. 4992. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from california reserves. the gentleman from california is recognized.
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mr. royce: mr. speaker, i yield three minutes to the gentleman from michigan, mr. huizenga, chairman of the subcommittee on monetary policy and trade. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan is recognized for three minutes. mr. huizenga: i rise in support of h.r. 4992. i appreciate my good friend, chairman royce of the foreign affairs committee. we also serve on this financial services committee. it was my subcommittee that granted the partial waiver to allow this legislation to come directly to the floor. because i think this is so important, that's why it is here on the floor today. under the obama administration's flawed nuclear deal, the jcpoa or joint comprehensive plan of action, iran has received significant sanction relief so far. because of this dangerous deal, the obama administration left the door wide open for iran's supreme leader to demand access to the dollar. this is the same country that the state department dubbed, quote, the world's foremost state sponsor of terrorism. this is the same country that the treasury department has labeled a jurisdiction of
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primary money laundering concern. and thanks to its support for terrorism, the use of its banks to facilitate nuclear and ballistic missile initiatives. last summer, second treasury -- treasury secretary lew testified that, quote, iranian banks will not be able to clear u.s. dollars through new york if, hold -- through new york, hold correspondentant reengses ships with u.s. constitutions and with the banks, end quote. i agree. they should not, i'm thrilled to hear secretary lew make that statement. he also made it perfectly clear with another quote. iran will continue to be denied access to the world's largest financial and commercial market, end quote. yet we just hear that this is a breach of the jcpoa that's just been asserted. if so, secretary lew's own word would indicate a breach before it was enacted. so which is it? they either really don't want to codify this because they plan on trying to offer this, or allow
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iran to do it, or for some other strange reason, they think that these words alone cover it. they don't, because it's not legally binding. in fact, the president, the poe tuss, the -- potus, the president of the united states himself said iran has violated the spirit of the agreement already. last week we had testimony in my subcommittee that in germany, the german intelligence services, angela merkel talked distack, in the bune that shall shall shall -- did bundestag, that they have heard iran continues to pursuit nuclear weapons. it would codify existing u.s. regulations and registered security brokers or dealers from processing funds to or from iran as well as to prohibit any foreign financial institutions from transferring any funds that are in u.s. dollars. it's been also asserted, i would
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say, ludicrously, that it's been stated that somehow this bill and others like it are unpatriotic. i think it's the exact opposite, mr. speaker. this bill is necessary to make sure that the financial standing of the u.s. institutions are protected. i think it's important that we assert ourselves to make sure that this administration doesn't go beyond the bounds that it already has, and it's time to put partisan persuasions aside and work together and stop doing business with our enemies. i urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support this important bill. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentlelady from california is recognized. ms. waters: i now yield four minutes to the gentleman from texas, a member of the ways and means committee, mr. doggett. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas is recognized for four minutes. . mr. doggett: thank you so much. one year ago america chose to preclude an iranian nuclear weapons program through diplomacy rather than war. what's happened in the 12 months since that decision was made?
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the iranians have given up 98% of their nuclear material. they have dismantled thousands of centrifuges. major lled the core of a plutonium reactor with concrete. even the chief of staff of the israeli defense forces, the i.d.f., said, quote, the deal has actually removed the most serious danger to israel's existence for the foreseeable future and greatly reduced the threat the long term. -- over the long term. the promoters of these three bills are in a state of denial. they took every opportunity along the path of negotiations to try to block, obstruct and interfere with those negotiations and leave us with only the choice of war and military action to stop the iranians from a nuclear weapon. and so today, having denied for so long, they are still
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compelled to deny that diplomacy has worked in the last year. what we should be doing today is building on our success, not seeking to subvert it. success so far doesn't mean that the iranians may not back track. we know this is an authoritarian government that commits many wrongs today. certainly not our friend. that's why careful scrutiny and intensive inspections must continue. i believe that patient, deliberate democracy remains the only course, the best path to protect our families. one of the republican members this morning attacked the agreement and said, you know, the got us walking on egg shells. i have to tell you that even if that's true, and i deny that it is, walking on egg shells is much, much better for american families than the death and destruction of unleashing actual military shells.
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that's what the alternative is. i believe that continuous intrusive monitoring is the key to keeping our families safe and avoiding war. and we have a lot of people agreeing with that. nobel laureates, generals, diplomats and former legislators advising that this agreement, through this agreement all pathways to an iranian nuclear weapon have been blocked. a report this week. i remain hopeful, i'm hopeful and optimistic that eventually we will overcome the extremists in iran, hopeful that peace will prevail, and hopeful about this congress. if nothing else, because there's work that the republicans want to do to undo this agreement. but they've shown such inability to do any other work as they today shut down the congress for the next 53 days, leaving so many challenges
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unanswered. let's conclude today by rejecting this attempt to deny the most effective way to protect the security of our families and that of our allies, by letting democracy and diplomacy continue to advance. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from texas yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: mr. speaker, just to make a point. this is not a breach of the nuclear deal. this has nothing to do with the nuclear deal. we did not agree to give iran access to the u.s. dollar. as a matter of fact, the agreement that we all understood is that without ending its support for terrorism and proliferation of missiles, they weren't going to get that access. there were things we've held in reserve, continued pressure against iran to get its compliance. the difficulty is that the
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ayatollah wants this form of additional relief, outside of the deal, which essentially declares that iran is open for business. and he wants to be able to do it without ending his proliferation of missiles and these ballistic missile tests. and we're saying no, no. that was not in the deal, we're not giving you additional, additional rewards. while you're decrying the united states and saying, death to the great satan and death to the little satan. death to america and death to israel. why should we further give advantage to the buildup of iranian power when it's going not into the economy, but into the hands, the coffers, the iranian revolutionary guard corps? that's the problem. i yield three minutes to the gentleman from arkansas, mr.
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ill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arkansas is recognized. mr. hill: thank you, mr. speaker. i appreciate the chairman yielding. i appreciate his work on this important issue. he makes a good point. which is that this is not so noted ut the jcpoa, as by the opposition, this is about the fact that our joint agreement that the obama administration reached with our allies, with iran, is in conflict in many ways with existing federal law and federal practice. where we are still involved in analyzing iran for its sanctioned violations. more importantly, while there's a lot of talk about the one-year anniversary of the jcpoa, i want to remind my friends on both sides of the
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aisle that seven years ago, in iran 009, the people of rose up against the malicious mullahs of their murderous regime, and their cries for help fell on deaf ears. -- ears in the united states. some 4,000 arrested. what's become of them, what's become of those people, what's become of their cause? i want to remember in june in 2009 the impact of this regime in iran. i'm proud to support this legislation, proud to serve on the terrorism financing task force, and in note, look to the state department's most recent country reports on iran. the report says, iran's state sponsorship of terrorism worldwide remains undiminished by the islamic revolutionary guard. the quds force. its ministry of intelligence and security and tehran's ally,
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hezbollah. in addition to its support for terrorism, the iranian regime is corrupt and known to be known in money laundering, bribery and illicit finance around the world. not just in the middle east. but in the western hemisphere. and the treasury has designated the government of iran as a primary money laundering concern since 2011. international financial bodies such as the financial action task force have warned iran's financing of terrorism poses a serious threat to the international financial system. so, since the iranian deal, the islamic guard is actively providing funding and arms to hezbollah and hamas. propping up shi'a militias in iraq. responsible for the deaths of americans. our soldiers in iraq. they continue to hold hostages. they continue to fail federal adjudicated claims of 35 years of victims. and they continue to trade and test ballistic weapons,
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threatening our allies and our best interests. this legislation's not about sinking the nuclear deal. this legislation is about holding iran accountable for its terrorist-financed activities and its money laundering activities. there's no reason, in any way, shape or form, that they deserve dollar access. that legislation's about maintaining the integrity of our country's financial system and preventing the dollar from being used to support terrorism around the world. i'm surprised to -- pleased to support this legislation and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentlelady from california is recognized. now yield five minutes to the gentleman from connecticut, a member of the financial services committee, mr. himes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from connecticut is recognized for five minutes. mr. himes: thank you, mr. speaker. thank you, madam, ranking member. i rise in strong opposition to h.r. 4992. precisely because the passage of 4992, were it to become law, and i say this as a member of
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the house permanent select committee on intelligence, would put me and this congress and the rest of us in the united states back in a position of walking on egg shells. if i might borrow a phrase used by the republican majority. it would put me back in the position of every single week going to the spaces of the intelligence committee and asking the question, what kind of progress has iran made this week in their efforts to develop nuclear weapons? and hearing answers that i would not like and nobody in this chamber would like. there is no question, and there is no legal opinion of any credibility that suggests that 4992 is not a very clear violation of our obligations under the jcpoa. the majority has talked a lot about denying access to the u.s. infrastructure financial system. which the treasury secretary has said we will do. what they are not telling you is that 4992 would subject non-u.s. banks to the same restrictions on u.s. banks,
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regarding dollar denominated transactions. so we would say to a french bank, you cannot undertake a transaction with a german hotel developer if it were denominated in dollars. now, apart from the jurisdictional questions and the damage that that would do to the united states dollar as the global reserve currency, it is a very clear violation of the jcpoa. there is no legal interpretation of any credibility that would suggest otherwise. let me be clear about some things that we all agree on. i have a profound amount of respect for chairman royce, and we agree on some things. i've heard a steady stream from the other side of the truth that iran is money laundering. that they are sponsoring terrorism. that they are destabilizing the region. that they treat their people terribly. you are 100% right. on that issue. you will find no disagreement on this side of the aisle with any of those allegations. but the fact of the matter is that the iran nuclear deal, which is jeopardized by this
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bill, was a deal that said, in exchange for stopping your development of nuclear weapons, we will provide you with access to some of your own money. that was the deal. the deal did not include, will you stop destabilizing the region, that you'll stop your terrorist activities. by the way, i'm sorry about that. i would have liked to see a deal that would have brought iran sfwirle into the community of nation -- entirely into the community of nations but that was not the deal. there was a time in american history when we were a bit more adult in the way that we thought about foreign relations, where ronald rage would be go to the soviet union, what -- ronald reagan would go to the soviet union, what he called the evil empire, and do a deal that was about nuclear weapons. while the soviet union was murderous to their own people and destabilizing the globe and threatening us with annihilation. but we said, it was worth doing this deal and preserving the safety that we had against ballistic weapons under ronald reagan. now, we can't disagree -- we
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can disagree on some facts. i heard chairman royce say that tens of billions of dollars are going to the revolutionary guard. that's simply not true. secretary kerry estimated, and he was referring to actual dollars into the country, that some $3 billion had come into iran. so, yes, the revolutionary guard sadly will probably benefit in some small way from the sanctions relief. but the figure of tens of billions of dollars is simply inaccurate. and we disagree fundamentally on the iran nuclear deal. the fact of the matter, and i've heard allegations from the other side to the contrary, is not the iaea, not any global bodies are suggesting that iran has been in anything other than compliance with the deal. as a consequence, instead of being two months away as we were from the development of an iranian nuclear weapon, we are probably 12 months or more away from the development of a nuclear weapon. is that perfect? of course it's not. but speaking as somebody who every week considers the
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threats to this country being 12 months away is a heck of a lot safer than being two months away. i've heard from the other side that this is a flawed deal. that it jeopardizes u.s. national security and the security of israel. let me quote somebody who knows something about the security of israel. lieutenant general, chief of staff of the israeli defense forces. six months ago he said, the deal has actually removed the most serious danger to israel's existence for the foreseeable future, and greatly reduced the threat over the long term. if the true for israel, it's true for the united states. stand up for peace, stand up for our international obligations, and oppose h.r. 4992. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. royce: thank you, mr. speaker. i think the secretary was awarded several pinocchios from "the washington post" for that
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statement on the amount of support that would give the iranian revolutionary guard corps. and the reason why is because the iranian revolutionary guard corps in fact owns many of the largest institutions, they were nationalized after the 1979 revolution. and because of this, they are the beneficiaries of the economic activity. it's the number one economic actor, according to our department of commerce, according to our state department, the irgc is the number one actor. in point, yes, this deal is benefit emonstrabley the revolutionary guards corps at a time when they are charged of this ballistic missile progra

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