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Apr 30, 2015

U.S. senator and Iran foreign minister face off on Twitter

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Amid heated debate over Iran policy in the U.S. Senate, one of the leading congressional critics of the international negotiations with Tehran squared off with the country’s foreign minister on Twitter.

U.S. Senator Tom Cotton used the social media service to challenge Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif to come to Washington for a debate on Iran’s “record of tyranny, treachery and terror” after Zarif mentioned Cotton in remarks at New York Univesity on Wednesday.

Apr 29, 2015

Senate rejects tying terrorism support to Iran sanctions relief

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate rejected an effort on Wednesday to tie sanctions relief for Iran under an international nuclear agreement to a requirement that President Barack Obama certify that Tehran is not supporting acts of terrorism against Americans.

A handful of Republicans joined Senate Democrats to reject by a 54-45 vote a proposed amendment offered by Republican Senator John Barrasso that would have added the terrorism clause to a bill subjecting an international nuclear agreement to review by the U.S. Congress.

Apr 29, 2015

U.S. Senate rejects bid to toughen Iran nuclear review bill

WASHINGTON, April 28 (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate rejected an
effort on Tuesday to require any nuclear agreement with Iran to
be considered an international treaty, which would have forced
any deal to be ratified by two-thirds of the Senate’s 100

The Senate voted 57-39 to reject the measure, which
Republican Senator Ron Johnson offered as an amendment to the
Iran Nuclear Review Act, a bill requiring an Iran nuclear deal
to be reviewed by Congress.

Apr 28, 2015

U.S. lawmakers seek to bar new travel to Cuba

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Members of the U.S. House of Representatives launched an effort on Tuesday to prevent new travel from the United States to Cuba, one of the first legislative efforts in Congress to thwart President Barack Obama’s effort to normalize relations with the Communist-ruled island.

A House Department of Transportation appropriations bill introduced on Tuesday included a provision barring the use of funds to facilitate new scheduled air transportation originating from the United States if any such flights would land on or pass through any property confiscated by the Cuban government.

Apr 27, 2015

Republicans seek new limits on Guantanamo prisoner transfers

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Republican lawmakers have unveiled plans to make it harder to transfer inmates from the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base, stepping up a campaign to slow President Barack Obama’s efforts to close the controversial detention center.

The proposed 2016 National Defense Authorization Act released on Monday renewed an annual ban on spending to transfer prisoners to the United States from the detention center.

Apr 24, 2015

U.S. pro-Israel lobby opposes push to toughen Iran nuclear bill

WASHINGTON, April 24 (Reuters) – An influential pro-Israel
lobbying group is pressuring U.S. lawmakers not to support
amendments to toughen a bill that lets Congress review a nuclear
agreement with Iran, hoping to avoid a partisan battle that
could doom the legislation.

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) has
been urging Republicans not to back amendments that might turn
many Senate Democrats against the “Iran Nuclear Review Act,” or
prompt Democratic President Barack Obama to renew his threat to
veto the legislation.

Apr 23, 2015

U.S. Republicans vow amendments that might risk Iran nuclear bill

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Republican senators pledged on Thursday to try to toughen a bill giving Congress the power to review a nuclear agreement with Iran, raising the possibility of a partisan battle that could complicate the measure’s chances of passing.

The Senate’s Republican Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell, said he expected a “vigorous debate” next week.

Apr 22, 2015

House passes cyber-threat information bill

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill on Wednesday that would make it easier for private companies to share information about cybersecurity threats with the government without fear of lawsuits.

The vote was 307-116 in favor of the measure, with strong support from Republicans and Democrats.

Apr 22, 2015

U.S. Republicans move to extend spies’ power to collect phone data

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – In a move likely to re-ignite public debate in America over electronic spying, Republicans have introduced a bill in the Senate to extend a controversial law empowering the government’s bulk collection of U.S. telephone records.

President Barack Obama and many in Congress want to retain the mass data-collection program as a national security tool but want substantial changes in the program, which was secret until disclosed two years ago by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

Apr 21, 2015

Senate may face contentious debate on Iran nuclear bill

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Senate could plunge into a heated debate on legislation giving Congress the power to review a nuclear deal with Iran as soon as Wednesday, as some Republicans sought to change the bill to take a harder line on any agreement.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 19-0 last week for a compromise version of the bill, in a rare display of bipartisan unity in the deeply divided Congress.

    • About Patricia

      "Patricia Zengerle covers foreign policy and national security on Capitol Hill for Reuters. She recently covered the 2012 campaign and the White House and had been an editor in Washington, D.C., an editor in London, and a correspondent in Miami, Pittsburgh and New York. You can follow her on Twitter @ReutersZengerle"
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