The Corner

National Security & Defense

Mitch McConnell Should Follow House’s Lead on ObamaNuke Deal

The fight against ObamaNuke isn’t over until the thin gentleman sings.

Under the rules, the U.S. Senate’s svelte majority leader Mitch McConnell has until at least Thursday, September 17 to keep the World’s Greatest Deliberative Body focused on efforts to derail Obama’s disastrous atomic agreement with the Islamic Republic of Iran. And McConnell just might have more fight in him than the old-guard media would have Americans think.

“Senator McConnell believes the President’s deal with the Iranian regime is one of the single greatest national-security mistakes in generations,” a Capitol Hill source close to the Kentucky Republican told me Friday night. “After Democrats blocked allowing the American people from having an up-or- down vote on the Iran deal, McConnell announced that he would make them vote again — this Tuesday, as a matter of fact — in the hopes that some of them will come to their senses and let their constituents’ voices be heard.”

“But that is not all,” this well-placed individual continued. “McConnell is considering a series of other options, potentially including amendments.  What those will be, we’ll announce in the coming days. But the bottom line is that the Democrats will be held accountable, and there are more actions that the Senate is going to take.”

These assurances should bolster the spirits of ObamaNuke opponents who have had to endure the Left’s nauseating ball-spiking over Obama’s “victory” after Senate Democrats filibustered a motion of disapproval last Thursday. While it garnered 58 bipartisan votes, 42 Democrats’ kept the rejection language itself from reaching a roll-call showdown. This spares Obama the inconvenience of lifting his vaunted pen to veto such a measure, which would have won a simple majority — if Democrats actually had voted on this agreement’s merits, such as they are.

McConnell reportedly is considering reconsidering the disapproval motion. Perhaps he thinks that Democrats are too embarrassed to re-filibuster it. This is a needless waste of time.

Instead, and ironically, the best way for McConnell to lead is to follow. Here is what I hope he will do:

McConnell’s model for handling the ObamaNuke deal should look less like this . . .

Specifically, McConnell should make the Senate vote on the three precise measures that the House of Representative weighed Thursday and Friday. To Speaker John Boehner’s credit, he abandoned the neo-Cubist Corker-Cardin review process. It allows disapproval of ObamaNuke in the House and Senate, by majority votes, rather than the affirmative, 67-vote supermajority threshold under the U.S. Constitution’s Treaty Clause. Knowing that his wretched deal with Tehran could not garner 67 Senate votes, Obama demanded this parliamentary Picasso canvas. Inexplicably, the GOP congressional leadership framed it for him last spring.

When Republican backbenchers rebelled on Wednesday, refusing to approve the parliamentary rule for proceeding with this matter, Boehner felt the heat, saw the light, and deployed Plan B.

Under his leadership — and that of Republican sponsors Mike Pompeo of Kansas, Peter Roskam of Illinois, and Lee Zeldin of New York — the House considered three bills:

• H.R. 411 certified that Obama violated federal law — the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act (42 U.S. Code §2160e) — by refusing to deliver to Congress at least two secret side deals that Iran negotiated with third parties and attached to ObamaNuke, essentially in invisible ink. This federal statute passed the Senate 98 to 1, cleared the House 415 to 0, and was signed into law by Obama himself on May 22. Obama broke that very law less than two months later, on July 20, when he failed to hand over those side deals. Thursday’s bill, H.R. 411, passed the House 245 – 186.

• H.R. 3460 stripped Obama of the power to waive, suspend, or reduce sanctions against Iran until January 21, 2017 — the day after Air Force One dumps him in Chicago. The House endorsed that bill 247 – 186.

• Finally, H.R. 3461 would have approved the ObamaNuke deal. It failed with only 162 Democrats supporting Obama’s plan, while 269 members (244 Republicans and 25 Democrats) turned their thumbs down on the pact. Thus, the United States House of Representatives officially defeated Obama’s Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

…and more like this.

Senator McConnell should have the Senate vote on these exact measures, but in reverse order.

First, call up H.R. 3461 so senators can decide whether or not to approve the ObamaNuke deal. If all Senate Republicans oppose that motion —along with Democrats Ben Cardin of Maryland, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Robert Menendez of New Jersey, and Chuck Schumer of New York — it will fail, with 42 in favor and 58 opposed. If so, ObamaNuke officially will have been rejected by the entire U.S. Congress.

If Democrats refuse such a straightforward vote, they then would filibuster against a motion to approve Obama’s priceless legacy bauble.

McConnell should tell Democrats: “Knock yourselves out.”

McConnell should make California’s Barbara Boxer, Minnesota’s Al Franken, and Nevada’s Harry Reid stand up on the Senate floor and explain why they and their comrades spurn McConnell’s offer to let them vote for Obama’s deal. McConnell should force the donkeys to babble about wanting not to vote for approval. McConnell should schedule that time between, say, 4:00 PM and Midnight, so journalists at the nightly news programs, cable-news channels, and print and Internet newsrooms will have that spectacle splashed right before their eyes. This Democrat-fueled fiasco will be broadcast live into American living rooms and laptops and, the next morning, detailed in newspapers worldwide.

This will turn this issue upside down and expose these Democrats as total frauds and partisan hacks. They should be sufficiently self-humiliated not to survive a subsequent cloture vote and almost certainly not a second cloture vote, if they continue their nonsense. This, ultimately, should pressure them into voting on a motion to approve this accord with the ayatollahs. And then ObamaNuke will fail in the Senate.

This will break Democrat morale. It will leave them disoriented, dejected, and disputatious among themselves.

That’s exactly when McConnell should unleash, verbatim, the House bill that confirms that Obama broke the law by covering up those secret side agreements. Ditto the other bill, which yanks Obama’s authority to end sanctions on Iran. If the dazed and confused Democrats lack the will to filibuster either of those House bills, Senate passage follows, and then either or both bills go to Obama’s desk. This will force him to get involved.

Obama likely will veto one bill or the other.

Let him!

Let Obama veto a resolution that declares that he concealed the side agreements from Congress. Let him veto legislation that simply tells the truth. Let him turn his signature on that bill into an autographed lie.

If Republicans make this painful enough for Obama, maybe, just maybe, he will dismount this nag and walk away. If he insists on riding it, however, the GOP should make his victory gallop as painful for Obama as possible.

If, after all of this, Obama either prevails legislatively or loses and defiantly inflicts his deal by decree, he and his Democrat pals will own this property 1,000 percent — mortgage, deed, and front-door keys.

Every time Iran violates this bargain, this will constitute yet another ObamaCheat.

Every time one of Hamas’ or Hezbollah’s radical-Islamic bombs explodes — because the jaw-droppingly destructive Barack Hussein Obama craves the delivery of $150 billion to their sponsors in Tehran — that will be yet another ObamaBlast.

And if, God forbid, a mushroom cloud towers over Tel Aviv or Toledo, it will be monogrammed “BHO.”

Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News contributor, a contributor to National Review Online, and a senior fellow with the London Center for Policy Research.


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