Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA), Chairman of the Senate Republican Conference, today praised his Senate colleagues for passing the Iran Freedom and Support Act, which the House passed Thursday. Senator Santorum introduced the Senate companion to this House-passed bill along with Majority Leader Frist (R-TN) and Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Bill Nelson (D-FL). The bipartisan legislation holds the current regime in Iran accountable for its threatening behavior and supports a transition to democracy in Iran.
The bipartisan legislation provides for key enhancements to the Iran-Libya Sanctions Act (ILSA) which is set to expire at the end of this week. Additionally, the bill authorizes assistance to pro-democracy groups inside and outside Iran and provides additional authorities the necessary tools to stop money laundering efforts that support weapons of mass destruction (WMD) proliferation. The bipartisan House bill was sponsored by Representatives Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL-18) and Tom Lantos (D-CA-12).
“In this critically important time in our nation’s history, the United States cannot stand by while the government of Iran continues to be a grave threat to our country, our allies, and the entire international community. Today, Congress has taken a great step forward in our effort to deal with this threat. The Iran Freedom and Support Act encourages a peaceful transition to democracy in Iran and to ensure that ILSA provisions are extended for another five years. I am proud to have worked to pass this legislation and look forward to the President signing it into law,” said Senator Santorum.
The bill includes many provisions from S. 333, also called the Iran Freedom and Support Act, which Senator Santorum introduced in February 2005.