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Jan 14, 2014

Iran deal progress dampens push for new U.S. sanctions bill

WASHINGTON, Jan 13 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama is
more likely to win his battle with the U.S. Congress to keep new
sanctions on Iran at bay now that world powers and Tehran have
made a new advance in talks to curb the Islamic Republic’s
nuclear program.

Despite strong support for the bill in the Senate, analysts,
lawmakers and congressional aides said on Monday that the
agreement to begin implementing a nuclear deal on Jan. 20 makes
it harder for sanctions hawks to attract more backers.

Jan 10, 2014

U.S. sanctions bill Iran nuclear talks ‘insurance policy’: Senator

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Democratic U.S. senator leading the charge to pass new sanctions on Iran despite objections from the Obama administration said on Friday the measure is a “diplomatic insurance policy” to push Tehran to comply with agreements to curtail its nuclear program.

Fifty-nine senators – 16 of them Democrats – of the 100 in the chamber were co-sponsoring the bill, despite the White House’s insistence that it could imperil delicate international negotiations with the Islamic Republic.

Jan 9, 2014

Senate majority support Iran sanctions bill opposed by Obama

WASHINGTON, Jan 9 (Reuters) – More than a majority of U.S.
senators support a bill to impose new sanctions on Iran should
the Islamic Republic break an agreement to curb its nuclear
program, aides said on Thursday, but there was no plan yet to
debate the measure.

The White House has threatened to veto the legislation,
and Iran says last November’s nuclear deal struck in Geneva
would be dead if the U.S. Congress imposes new sanctions.

Jan 6, 2014

Iran sanctions bill opposed by Obama gains Senate backers

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. senators pushing a bill to slap new sanctions on Iran if it goes back on an interim deal under which it agreed to limit its nuclear program have gained support since the legislation was introduced in December, aides said on Monday.

The bill, which the White House has threatened to veto, requires further reductions in Iran’s oil exports and would apply new penalties on other industries if Iran either violates the interim agreement or fails to reach a final comprehensive deal.

Dec 22, 2013

Big Oil sits out lobbying on Iran as U.S. Congress stands firm

WASHINGTON, Dec 22 (Reuters) – As debate rises in Washington
over the first thaw in relations between Iran and the United
States in decades, powerful oil companies are opting for an
unusual tactic: silence.

Oil companies such as Exxon Mobil Corp and
ConocoPhillips could earn huge profits if the United
States loosened economic sanctions on Iran, allowing access to
its oil and natural gas fields, some of the world’s largest and
least costly to produce.

Dec 19, 2013

U.S. senators make move toward more sanctions on Iran

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Despite opposition from the Obama administration, 26 U.S. senators introduced legislation on Thursday to impose new sanctions on Iran if the country breaks an interim deal under which Tehran agreed to curb its nuclear program.

It will be weeks at the earliest before the bill comes to a vote in the 100-member Senate, if it gets that far, given staunch opposition by President Barack Obama’s administration and many of its supporters in Congress.

Dec 19, 2013

U.S. senators offer measure to impose more Iran sanctions

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Despite opposition from the Obama administration, U.S. senators introduced legislation on Thursday to impose sanctions on Iran if the country breaks an interim deal struck last month under which Tehran agreed to curb its nuclear program.

Democrats Robert Menendez, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Charles Schumer, the third-ranking Democrat in the Senate, and Republican Senator Mark Kirk introduced with 23 others the bill intended to choke off funding to Iran’s nuclear program by cutting off its oil sales.

Dec 12, 2013

U.S. Senators introduce bill to eliminate corn ethanol mandate

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A group of 10 U.S. Senators introduced a bipartisan bill on Thursday to eliminate the corn ethanol mandate, arguing that current law raises the cost of food and animal feed and damages the environment.

The bill, introduced by Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat; Tom Coburn, an Oklahoma Republican; and eight cosponsors, faces an uphill battle as many lawmakers from agricultural states support the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS)that dictates that rising volumes of ethanol made from grains, including corn, be blended into motor fuel.

Dec 9, 2013

U.S. senators prepare legislation to pressure Iran

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Two U.S. senators are preparing legislation to impose new sanctions on Iran in six months if an interim deal on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program goes nowhere, penalties that Iran’s foreign minister has said would kill the agreement.

The Democratic chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Robert Menendez, and Republican Senator Mark Kirk are close to agreeing on legislation that would target Iran’s remaining oil exports, foreign exchange reserves and strategic industries, aides said on Monday.

Dec 4, 2013

Iran’s ability to enrich uranium troubles U.S. lawmakers

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. lawmakers in the House of Representatives said on Wednesday they are concerned about Iran’s ability to continue enriching uranium under the interim agreement on Tehran’s disputed nuclear program, an issue they are likely to press as global powers attempt to reach a final agreement.

The concerns showed that House lawmakers could be willing to push for a new sanctions package next year that would define what Congress would be willing to accept in a final deal with Iran.

    • About Timothy

      "I cover U.S. energy and environment policy and climate change. Moved to DC in late 2009 after a decade in New York. Author of "Diminishing Resources:Oil," which is one in a series of books for young adults."
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