APN Legislative Round-Up: July 3-25, 2014

1.  Bills, Resolutions & Letters re: Israel-Palestine Crisis
2.  Bills, Resolution & Letters re: Iran diplomacy
3.  Bills, Resolution & Letters re: Other issues
4.  Hearings
5.  Members on the Record
6.  From the Press

 

With apologies, again, for the irregular timing of the Round-Up – a victim of summer travel plans…

Note: GAO Report July 2014: DEMOCRACY ASSISTANCE: Lessons Learned from Egypt Should Inform Future U.S. Plans

 

1. Bills, Resolutions, & Letters re: Israel-Palestine Crisis

(IRON DOME EMERGENCY SUPPLEMENTAL FUNDING) S. 2648:  Introduced 7/23 by Mikulski (D-MD), “A bill making emergency supplemental appropriations for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2014, and for other purposes.”  On 7/24, placed on Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders.  In a 7/23 floor statement, Mikulski  noted that the bill will “strengthen Israel's Iron Dome and add $225 million to replenish the antimissile defense system, saving lives by shooting down Hamas rockets, helping our essential ally Israel…”  She added that “The funding is needed now to replenish a key part of the missile defense system, replace Iron Dome artillery. Israel has already used a great deal of its assets dealing with the more than 2,000 Hamas rockets aimed at Israel. Israel has the right to self-defense. We are helping them have what they need to intercept 90 percent of the rockets.”  Gillibrand (D-NY) and Kirk (R-IL) press release on the Iron Dome funding is here.  Mikulski press release is here; summary of supplemental funding is here.   From the media:  U.S. Senate sets $225 million for Israel's Iron Dome in emergency bill (Reuters 7/22); Israel asks U.S. for $225 million to replace missing Iron Dome parts (Haaretz 7/23)

(SUPPORT FOR ISRAEL) H. Res. 657: Introduced 7/8 by Israel (D-NY) and having 166 cosponsors when it was brought to the floor for a vote, “Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives regarding United States support for the State of Israel as it defends itself against unprovoked rocket attacks from the Hamas terrorist organization.”  Passed 7/11 without objection.  This resolution was backed strongly by AIPAC (see here).  Press release from Reps. Israel (D-NY) and Cole (R-OK) on introduction of the resolution is here; their press release celebrating its passage is here.  Royce (R-CA) statement applauding passage of the resolution is here.

(SUPPORT FOR ISRAEL) S. Res. 498:  Introduced 7/10 by Graham (R-SC) and having 79 cosponsors when it was brought to the floor for a vote, “A resolution expressing the sense of the Senate regarding United States support for the State of Israel as it defends itself against unprovoked rocket attacks from the Hamas terrorist organization.”   Passed 7/17 by Unanimous Consent.  This resolution was backed strongly by AIPAC (see here).  Press releases on introduction of the resolution are here, here, and here. Graham press release on passage of the resolution is here.

(SUPPORT FOR ISRAEL) S. Res. 517: Introduced 7/24 by Graham (R-SC) and 5 cosponsors, “A resolution expressing support for Israel's right to defend itself and calling on Hamas to immediately cease all rocket and other attacks against Israel.”  Referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations.  As of this writing, this resolution does not appear (yet) on the AIPAC website).  Text of the resolution is available here.

(CONCERN FOR CHILDREN ON BOTH SIDES) H. Res. 665:  Introduced 7/10 by McKinley (D-WV) and having 25 cosponsors, “Condemning the murder of Israeli and Palestinian children in Israel and the ongoing and escalating violence in that country.”   Referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.  McKinley press release here.

(DENOUNCING HAMAS FOR USING “HUMAN SHIELDS”) H. Con. Res. 107:  Introduced 7/16 by Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) and having 57 cosponsors, “Denouncing the use of civilians as human shields by Hamas and other terrorist organizations in violation of international humanitarian law.”
Referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.  This resolution is backed strongly by AIPAC (see here), which makes the low number of cosponsors quite notable.  Ros-Lehtinen and Deutch (D-FL) press release on introduction of the resolution is here.

(DENOUNCING HAMAS FOR USING “HUMAN SHIELDS”) S. Con. Res. 41:   Introduced by Cruz (R-TX) and Gillibrand (D-NY) 7/24, “A concurrent resolution denouncing the use of civilians as human shields by Hamas and other terrorist organizations in violation of international humanitarian law.”  Referred to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.  As of this writing this resolution is not spotlighted on the AIPAC website, but given that it appears to be a companion version of H. Con. Res. 107, it is likely that it soon will.  Text of the resolution is available here.

(REWARD FOR CATCHING PALESTINIAN TERRORISTS) HR 5041:  Introduced 7/9 by Lamborn (R-CO) and having 3 cosponsors, “To require the Secretary of State to offer rewards totaling up to $5,000,000 for information on the kidnapping and murder of Naftali Fraenkel, a dual United States-Israeli citizen, that began on June 12, 2014.”  Referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.  Lamborn press release here.

(REWARD FOR CATCHING PALESTINIAN TERRORISTS) S. 2577:  Introduced 7/9 by Cruz (R-TX) and having 2 cosponsors, “A bill to require the Secretary of State to offer rewards totaling up to $5,000,000 for information on the kidnapping and murder of Naftali Fraenkel, a dual United States-Israeli citizen, that began on June 12, 2014.”   Reported out of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on 7/16, with a report issued on 7/21 (here).  On 7/21, placed on Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders.  Cruz press release here.

(REWARD FOR CATCHING PALESTINIAN TERRORISTS) S. 2579:  Introduced 7/9 by Cruz (R-TX) (in addition to S. 2577), “A bill to require the Secretary of State to offer rewards totaling up to $5,000,000 for information on the kidnapping and murder of Naftali Fraenkel, a dual United States-Israeli citizen, that began on June 12, 2014.”   On 7/10, read the second time and placed on Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders.

(NO AID TO PALESTINIANS)  S. Amdt 3477 to S. 2363:  On 7/8 Paul (R-KY) introduced an amendment to S. 2363, the “Bipartisan Sportsmen's Act of 2014.”  The amendment seeks to block any/all funding to the Palestinian Authority unless the PA has: “(1) formally recognized the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state;  (2) publicly recognized the state of Israel;  (3) renounced terrorism; (4) purged all individuals with terrorist ties from security services; (5) terminated funding of anti-American and anti-Israel incitement;  (6) publicly pledged to not engage in war with Israel; and (7) honored previous diplomatic agreements.  The amendment, which appears to be entirely non-germane to the base bill, has not been considered as of this writing.

(CALLING ON UN TO DENOUNCE “HUMAN SHIELDS”)  Israel- Ros-Lehtinen-Deutch-Cole letter:   This week Reps. Israel (D-NY), Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Deutch (D-FL) and Cole (R-OK)  began seeking cosigners on a letter to the head of the UN Human Rights Council calling on the council to condemn Hamas’ use of Palestinian civilians as “human shields.”  The letter denounces the UNHRC, noting that it “simply cannot be taken seriously as a human rights organization when it establishes a commission of inquiry to unjustly probe alleged war crimes and violation of international law by the nation defending its citizens from rocket attacks and terror tunnels, rather than the terrorist group whose depravity makes a policy of using its citizens [as human shields while its terror commanders flee to fortified bunkers.”  Press release on the letter is here.

(CALLING ON UN TO DENOUNCE “HUMAN SHIELDS”)  Boxer letter:   On 7/18, Senator Boxer (D-CA) sent a letter to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights decrying Hamas’ tactic of using “human shields.”

(NO CEASEFIRE BEFORE ALL THREATS ARE ELIMINATED)  Graham-Schumer-Cardin letter:  On 7/23, Senators Graham (R-SC), Schumer (D-NY) and Cardin (D-MD) sent a letter to President Obama expressing their “strong belief that any viable cease fire in Gaza must remove the threat to Israel posed by Hamas rockets and tunnels.  Any cease fire should create a situation in which Israeli citizens no longer face the threat of brazen terrorist attacks.”

(CALLING FOR A CEASEFIRE) Ellison et al letter:  On 7/17, Reps. Ellison (D-MN), Moran (D-VA), Conyers (D-MI), Johnson (D-GA), Lee (D-CA) and Lowenthal (D-CA) sent a letter to President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry urging them to redouble efforts to “urge Israeli and Palestinian leaders to come to a cease-fire agreement. The United States can help save Israeli and Palestinian lives by using all diplomatic leverage to work vigorously with U.S. allies to urge for an end to the violence. Media reports indicate that the parties were close to a cease-fire, however no agreement has been reached and violence persists. We commend efforts to facilitate a cease-fire and support Israel’s willingness to agree to the terms of the agreement. We urge the Administration to continue its efforts to facilitate an agreement that will engage and gamer support from all parties involved in this cycle of violence…”  Ellison press release is here. Also see: Liberal Democrats push Gaza cease-fire, new peace talks (Al-Monitor, 7/18)

(ADMONISHING UNSYG FOR COMMENTS ON ISRAEL)  Ayotte-Cardin-Rubio-Kirk-Graham letter:  On 7/23, Senators Ayotte (R-NH), Cardin (D-MD), Rubio (R-FL), Kirk (R-IL) and Graham (R-SC) sent a letter to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon conveying their “strong objections” to his “comments on July 20 describing Israel's military operations in Gaza as an ‘atrocious action.’”  The Senators admonish the UNSYG for having “failed to recognize an important fact: in this conflict, one side is trying to protect civilians while the other is deliberately trying to kill them. Israel is undertaking extraordinary efforts to avoid civilian casualties while Hamas cynically uses other Palestinians as human shields and attempts to deliberately kill Israeli civilians…”

2.  Bills, Resolution & Letters re: Iran diplomacy

(CONGRESSIONAL VETO ON ANY DEAL) S. 2650:  Introduced 7/23 by Corker (R-TN) and 5 cosponsors, “A bill to provide for congressional review of agreements relating to Iran's nuclear program, and for other purposes.”  Referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations.   Floor statements from Corker (R-TN), Graham (R-SC), Rubio (R-FL), and McCain (R-AZ) on the introduction of the bill are here.  Corker press release on the bill is here.  Media reports: Republicans Announce Plan to Require a Vote on Iran Nuclear Deal (National Journal 7/23);  New Senate Bill Mandates Congress Have Oversight on Iran Deal (Washington Free Beacon 7/23). 

(MORE IRAN SANCTIONS) S. 2585:  Introduced 7/10 by Kirk (R-IL) and Rubio (R-FL) (with Hatch jumping on board on 7/15), “A bill to impose additional sanctions with respect to Iran to protect against human rights abuses in Iran, and for other purposes.” Referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations.  Kirk press release on the bill here.  Kirk press release here.

(NO WAIVER OF SANCTIONS) S. 2667:  Introduced 7/24 by Kirk (R-IL) and an all-GOP line-up of 6 cosponsors, “A bill to prohibit the exercise of any waiver of the imposition of certain sanctions with respect to Iran unless the President certifies to Congress that the waiver will not result in the provision of funds to the Government of Iran for activities in support of international terrorism, to develop nuclear weapons, or to violate the human rights of the people of Iran.”  Referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations.

(CONDITIONS ON WAIVER OF IRAN SANCTIONS) S. Amdt.3652 to S. 2569:  On 7/24, Sen. Kirk (R-IL) and an all-GOP line-up of 7 cosponsors offered an Iran sanctions amendment to the “Bring Jobs Home Act.” The amendment seeks to bar the President from waiving sanction on Iran “in connection with the extension of the terms of the Joint Plan of Action beyond July 20, 2014” unless he certifies to Congress that such a waiver will not facilitate the ability of the Iranian government to provide support for various specified evil-doers or “to advance the efforts of Iran or any other country to develop nuclear weapons or ballistic missiles overtly or covertly” or to “commit any violation of the human rights of the people of Iran.”

(ON THE EXTENSION OF TALKS) H. Con. Res. 109:  Introduced 7/23 by Franks (R-AZ) and Lipinski (D-IL), “Expressing the sense of Congress relating to extending the interim agreement with the Government of Iran regarding its nuclear program.”  Referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

(RED LINES FOR AN IRAN DEAL) Menendez-Graham Letter:  Since July 11, Senators Menendez (D-NJ) and Graham (R-SC) have been seeking cosigners on a letter to President Obama laying out unrealistic red lines for any agreement with Iran.  An excellent analysis of the problems in the letter is available here, authored by Edward Levine (who served for more than 14 years as a senior professional staff member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and over 20 years with the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence).  The letter continues to circulate as of this writing, and is reportedly not attracting a large number of signers, as reported here: Congress Shies Away From Telling Obama What to Do on Iran (National Journal, 7/24).  Further media reports:  Menendez and Graham want Iran to “come clean” on any weapon plans in nuke program (Reuters, 7/14); Top senators push for 20-year inspection in Iran nuclear talks (The Hill, 7/15); Powerful Lawmakers Issue New Iran Demands (Foreign Policy/The Cable, 7/15)

(DANGER OF IRANIAN ICBMS) Ayotte-Rubio et al letter:  On 7/15 Senators Ayotte (R-NH) and Rubio (R-FL), along with an all-GOP list of 26 fellow senators, sent a letter to President Obama expressing “serious concerns regarding Iran's development of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) that could be used to strike the United States.”  The letter concludes with the warning:   “…We believe the administration should not conclude any nuclear accord with Tehran without addressing the threat that Iranian ballistic missiles could pose to our nation.

(CONSULT WITH CONGRESS ON IRAN DEAL) Royce-Engel letter:  On 7/9, the Royce-Engel letter (covered in the 6/2 edition of the Round-Up) was sent to President Obama.  It garnered a total of 344 signers.  HFAC press release on the letter is here.  Also see: House majority demands Obama consult Congress on Iran nuclear deal (The Hill, 7/10)

 

3.  Bills, Resolution & Letters re: Other issues

(PUTTING THE SQUEEZE ON HEZBOLLAH) HR 4411:  Introduced 4/7 by Meadows (R-NC) and having 321 cosponosrs when it was borught up for a vote, the “Hezbollah International Financing Prevention Act of 2014.”  Reported out of the House Foreign Affairs Committee on 7/22 (report here); brought to the floor 7/22 under suspension of the rules and passed by a vote of 404-0.  Floor statement delivered on 7/22 are here.  This bill was backed strongly by AIPAC (see here).  Engel (D-NY) statement in support of the passage of the bill is here.

(LOBBYING SUPREME COURT ON JERUSALEM STATUS) S. Res. 504:  Introduced 7/16 by Reid (D-NV) and McConnell (R-KY), “A resolution to direct the Senate Legal Counsel to appear as amicus curiae in the name of the Senate in Menachem Binyamin Zivotofsky, By His Parents and Guardians, Ari Z. and Naomi Siegman Zivotofsky v. John Kerry, Secretary of State (S. Ct.).”   Passed by the Senate 7/16 by Unanimous Consent. Reid’s 7/16 statement on the resolution is here.  NOTE:  APN submitted an Amicus Curiae brief to the Supreme Court, in the context of its previous consideration of that case.  APN’s brief – making the case against the petitioners and in support of the Administration, is available here.)

(EGYPT) S. 2649:  Introduced 7/23 by Graham (R-SC) and 4 cosponsors, “A bill to provide certain legal relief from politically motivated charges by the Government of Egypt.” Referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations.

(RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IN MIDDLE EAST) S.653 : Introduced 3/22 by Blunt (R-MO) and having 22 cosponsors when it was brought to a vote, the “Near East and South Central Asia Religious Freedom Act of 2013.”  On 7/10, passed by the Senate with amendments by Voice Vote.

(PUTTING THE SQUEEZE ON THE MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD) HR 5194:  Introduced 7/24 by Bachmann (R-MN) and 7 cosponsors, “To impose sanctions against persons who knowingly provide material support or resources to the Muslim Brotherhood or its affiliates, associated groups, or agents, and for other purposes.”  [Note: the Muslim Brotherhood is NOT a U.S.-designated Foreign Terrorist Organization; this legislation in effect seeks to legally treat it as one].  Referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, the Committee on Foreign Affairs, and  the Financial Services Committee.  Bachmann 7/24 floor statement on the Muslim Brotherhood and related issues is here.

(QATAR LABOR WOES)  H. Res. 682: Introduced by Miller (D-CA) and 17 cosponsors, “Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives regarding worker protections in Qatar and the 2022 Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) World Cup.”  Referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

 

4.  Hearings

7/29:  The Senate Foreign Relations Committee will hold a hearing entitled, “Iran: Status of the P-5+1.”  Scheduled Panel 1 witnesses are Wendy Sherman, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs; and David Cohen, Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence.   Scheduled Panel 2 witnesses are: Gary Samore, Harvard;  Olli Heinonen, Harvard; and Michael Singh, WINEP.

7/29: The House Foreign Affairs Committee will hold a hearing entitled, “Iran Nuclear Negotiations: From Extension to Final Agreement?”  Scheduled witnesses Wendy Sherman, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs; and David Cohen, Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence.  The hearing notice quotes HFAC Chairman Royce criticizing the extension of talks.

7/25:  The House Foreign Affairs Committee’s Subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia met to mark up H. Res. 665, condemning the murder of Israeli and Palestinian children in Israel and the ongoing and escalating violence in that country; and H. Con. Res. 107, denouncing the use of civilians as human shields by Hamas and other terrorist organizations in violation of international humanitarian law.  The committee adopted an amendment in the nature of a substitute offered by Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) to H. Con. Res. 107 (text here).

7/24:  The House Foreign Affairs Committee held a hearing entitled, “The Struggle for Civil Society in Egypt.”  Witnesses were: Charles Michael Johnson, Jr., US GAO (statement);  Charles Dunne, Freedom House (statement); Sam LaHood, former Egypt Country Director, International Republican Institute (statement); Patrick Butler, Int’l Center for Journalists (statement); and Lila Jaafar, National Democratic Institute (statement).  Video of the hearing is available here.

7/16:  The House Foreign Affairs Committee held a hearing entitled, “Iran’s Destabilizing Role in the Middle East”.  Witnesses were: Scott Modell, CSIS (statement);  Ray Takeyh, CFR (statement); and Natan Sachs, Brookings (statement).  Video of the hearing is available here.  Royce (R-CA) opening statement is here.

7/15:  The House Foreign Affairs Committee’s Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats held a hearing entitled, “The Future of Turkish Democracy.”  Witnesses were:  Nate Schenkkan, Freedom House (statement);  Elizabeth Prodromou, Tufts University (statement); Soner Cagaptay, WINEP (statement);  Kilic Kanat, SETA (statement); and Hakan Tasci, Tuskon-US (statement).  Video of the hearing is available in two parts, here and here.  HFAC Chair Royce’s (R-CA) opening statement is here.

5.  Members on the Record

Given events of the past few weeks, Members of Congress have been all over the place making statements about Israel, the Middle East, Iran, etc.  Below is just a selection of statements, as found in the Congressional Record and on the websites of Members of Congress.  Statements are grouped loosely according to topic, rather than simply laid out in chronological order.

Statements of solidary with/support for Israeli military action in Gaza - House

Miller (R-MI) 7/24

Heller (R-NV) 7/24

Wilson (D-FL) 7/23

Gohmert (R-TX) 7/23 (as part of a general anti-Obama rant, including against the FAA)

Pearce (R-NM) 7/23

Messer (R-IN) 7/22

Gohmert (R-TX) 7/22

Reed (R-NY) 7/21

Royce (R-CA) 7/18

Hastings (D-FL) 7/18

Hoyer (D-MD) 7/17

Hartzler (R-MS) 7/17

Jackson Lee (D-TX) 7/17

McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) 7/16

LaMalfa (R-CA) 7/16

Veasy (D-TX) 7/16

Perry (R-PA) 7/15

Schneider (D-IL) 7/15

Gohmert (R-TX) 7/15

Jeffries (D-NY) 7/15

Hahn (D-CA) 7/15

Westmoreland (R-GA) 7/15

Turner (R-OH) 7/15 (praising Iron Dome)

Poe (R-TX) 7/15

Gosar (R-AZ) 7/14

Ruppersberger (X-MD) 7/14

Nadler (D-NY) 7/14

Franks (R-AZ) 7/11 (appearing to call for US military intervention to support Israel, and accusing Obama of “an unprecedented act of cowardice and betrayal” for his “flushed and breathless rush to embrace terrorists launching rockets at Israeli children.”)

Israel (D-NY) 7/11

Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) 7/11

Chabot (R-OH) 7/11

Pelosi (D-CA) 7/11

McCarthy (D-NY) 7/11

Schneider (D-IL) 7/11

Johnson (R-OH) 7/11 (accusing “PA-Hamas unity government” of launching rockets from Gaza)

Boehner (R-OH) 7/11

Waxman (D-CA) 7/11

Dent (R-PA) 7/11

Cicilline (D-RI) 7/11

McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) 7/11

Engel (D-NY) 7/11

Frankel (D-FL) 7/11

Kinzinger (R-IL) 7/11

Larson (D-CT) 7/11

Hastings (D-FL) 7/11

Maffei (D-NY) 7/11

Roskam (R-IL) 7/10

Lowey (D-NY) 7/10

Jordan (R-OH) 7/10

Chabot (R-OH) 7/10

DeSantis (R-FL) 7/10

Rokita (R-IN) 7/10

Fleming (R-LA) 7/10 (blasting Obama Administration for comments made by the NSC’s Phil Gordon regarding the occupation)

Garrett (R-NJ) 7/10 (Calling on White House to repudiate comments made by the NSC’s Phil Gordon regarding the occupation)

Lance (R-NJ) 7/10

Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) 7/9

Royce (R-CA) 7/9

Gardner (R-CO) 7/9

Franks (R-AZ) 7/9 

Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) 7/8

Price (R-GA) 7/8

Olson (D-CT) 7/8

Israel (D-NY) 7/8

Kelly (R-PA) 7/8

Engel (D-NY) 7/8

Statements of support for Israeli military action in Gaza - Senate

Moran (R-KS) 7/24

Cardin (D-MD) 7/24

Gillibrand (D-NY) 7/24 (denouncing UN Human Rights Council resolution)

Cruz (R-TX) 7/23 (promising to hold all State Department nominees hostage until Obama Admin answers his questions about FAA decision to temporarily stop flights into Ben Gurion Int’l Airport)

Cruz (R-TX) 7/23 (accusing Obama Administration of launching an economic boycott against Israel following FAA decision to temporarily stop flights into Ben Gurion Int’l Airport)

Cochran (R-MI) 7/23 ( kvelling about Iron Dome)

Inhofe (R-OK) 7/22 (speaking at CUFI conference; ending with reiterating his call that all the land belongs to Israel, mainly because God said so)

Kaine (D-VA) 7/18

Menendez (D-NJ) 7/17

Cardin (D-MD) 7/17

Durbin (D-IL) 7/17

Paul (R-KY) 7/17 – pitching S. 2265

Paul (R-KY) 7/7 – pitching S. 2265

Graham (R-SC) & Rubio (R-FL) 7/17

Brown (D-OH) 7/16

Portman (R-OH) 7/15

Cruz (R-TX) 7/15

Booker (D-NJ) 7/14

Kaine (D-VA) 7/11

Reid (D-NV) 7/10

Gillibrand (D-NY) 7/10

Cardin (D-MD) 7/10

Inhofe (R-OK) 7/10

Schumer (D-NY) 7/9

Rubio (R-FL) 7/9

Markey (D-MA) 7/9

Statements in support of a ceasefire or communicating any real concern for Palestinians

McDermott (D-WA) 7/24

Nolan (D-MN) 7/24

Sanchez (D-CA) 7/23

Merkley (D-OR) 7/22 (urging restraint on both sides, protect innocent lives)

Kaine (D-VA) 7/22 (hosted briefing with Palestinian Ambassador in Washington)

Carson (D-IN) 7/21

Smith (D-WA) 7/17

Thompson (X-CA) 7/16

Ellison (D-MN) 7/10

Lee (D-CA) undated

Brown (D-FL) undated

 Statements on Iran diplomacy

NOTE: Win Without War has compiled (and is updating) a collection of Member statements in support of diplomacy, available here (as a result, pro-diplomacy statements are NOT included below).  In addition, on 7/19, the House Congressional Progressive Caucus released statements from its members supporting diplomacy.  See: Progressive Caucus Calls on Congress to Let Diplomacy Work on Iran Nuclear Deal.

Gohmert (R-TX) 7/22 (“It is time to bomb Iran's nuclear capabilities. It is time for the United States, if we are not going to stop Iran's nukes, then let Israel do it…”

Kirk (R-IL) 7/18 (more sanctions now)

Roskam (R-IL) 7/18 (“The Obama Administration's decision to extend conciliatory talks with Iran is a colossal mistake.”)

Royce (R-CA) 7/18 (“I don’t see an extension of funding to Iran as progress”)

Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) 7/18 (“Extending Interim Nuclear Agreement is Win-Win for Tehran and Congress Must Reply With Increased Sanctions”)

Hartzler (R-MS) 7/17 (more sanctions)

Graham (R-SC), Corker (R-TN) 7/17 – colloquy, among other things calling for Congress to have the final word on any deal

Lamborn (R-CO) 7/15 (critical)

Menendez (D-NJ) 7/15 (critical)

Inhofe (R-OK) 7/15 (critical)

Duffy (R-WI)  7/10 (critical)

 

6. From the Press

(Note: Given the sheer volume of reporting on Congress and Middle East-related issues over the past 3 weeks, it is simply not possible to include an exhaustive compilation here.  Below is only a brief selection of articles of interest).

Politico 7/24: Ted Cruz hits back at State Department

The Nation 7/24: Anti-Diplomacy Groups Dominate Congressional Hearings on Iran Policy

Newsmax 7/23: Cruz to Hold Up State Dept. Nominees Over Israel Flight Ban

Politico 7/23: Ted Cruz: Barack Obama using FAA in ‘economic boycott of Israel’

BuzzFeed 7/23: AIPAC Calls For Reversal Of Flight Ban To Tel Aviv

Roll Call 7/23: Ted Cruz Sees Obama ‘Economic Boycott’ of Israel as FAA Extends Tel Aviv Flight Ban

AP 7/23: Cruz suggests flight ban is boycott of Israel

The National Interest Online:  Rohrabacher (R-CA) oped: Al-Sisi to the Rescue

Algemeiner 7/21: U.S. Senators Pledge Support for Israeli Ground Invasion

AIPAC 7/21: AIPAC Statement on extension of Iran Talks

JTA 7/22: Christians United For Israel Urge Congress to Cut Funding to Palestinian Authority

US News 7/22: In Congress, No Room for Nuance on Israel

National Journal 7/21: White House Snubs Some Senior Lawmakers on Iran Negotiation Details

Al-Monitor 7/17: Lawmakers: Kerry floats new sanctions on Iran (State Dept Denies)

The Hill 7/17: Graham: We must stop nuclear Iran

Times of Israel 7/16: Cruz to introduce bill to renew Iran sanctions

Al-Monitor 7/16: Obama's request for Syrian aid runs into trouble

National Journal 7/15: Congress Considers $5 Million Reward for Information on Israeli Teens' Deaths

The Hill 7/15: Cruz: Obama’s ‘misguided’ foreign policy threatens US, Israel

YNet 7/15: Congress doubles money for Israel's Iron Dome

Al-Monitor 7/15: Republicans eye new Iran sanctions

Defense One 7/15: Senate Defense Bill Doubles Obama’s Request for Israel’s Iron Dome

The Hill (blog) 7/15: Palestinian-American gets short shrift from Congress member

CBS News 713: As Gaza death toll mounts, American politicians rally behind Israel

Times of Israel/JTA 7/11: US bill would offer $5M reward for capture of Fraenkel’s murderers

Jerusalem Post 7/11: Congress suggests nuclear deal with Iran not sufficient without grand bargain

Al-Monitor 7/11: Iran back in Capitol Hill’s cross hairs

Reuters 7/11: U.S. Congress seen backing extension of Iran nuclear pact

Al-Monitor 7/10: Congress flexes muscles ahead of Iran deal

Jerusalem Post 7/10: Washington unifies in support of Israel's Gaza operation

National Journal 7/10: View from the Hill: Israeli-Palestinian Talks Very Unlikely

Jerusalem Post 7/5: Cruz (R-TX) oped: Hamas has the blood of three young boys on its hands

Washington Examiner 7/3: Oped by Bachmann (R-MN) - End U.S. aid to a Palestinian government that includes Hamas terrorists

 

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