(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Obama at Arab Iran Summit

The US House of Representatives passed a bill 400 to 25 that would ensure Congress has oversight on the nuclear agreement with Iran.

The US House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a bill granting Congress oversight on any nuclear agreement with Iran. Similar legislation had been passed a week earlier by the Senate, with only one dissenting vote.

Congressmen voted 400 to 25 in favor of the bill, which gives Congress 30 days to approve the Iran deal, during which no sanctions may be lifted. The new law also prevents US President Barack Obama from removing congressional sanctions without authorization from Congress and requires regular reports on Iran’s compliance regarding its nuclear infrastructure.

Obama originally threatened to veto the bill, which was proposed in response to Congress’s frustration of being bypassed on an issue of such importance to the American people. Although the Constitution gives the Senate the responsibility of ratifying foreign treaties, the White House argued that the agreement between Iran and the P5+1 does not meet the legal definition of a treaty.

As it became clear that the Senate could well have enough votes to overturn a presidential veto, Obama decided to cooperate with Congress and work out a compromise version of the bill. White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest announced ahead of the House vote that the president would sign the final bill into law.

“Instead of Iranian negotiators knowing that they can wear down the administration, this now injects Congress as an important backstop,” Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told Associated Press.

Ranking Democrat Rep. Eliot Engel (NY) encouraged members of the House of pass the bill, saying, “Let’s get this bill to the president’s desk with a single voice.” He lamented, however, that the negotiations were limited to Iran’s nuclear program and did not include its disruptive role in the region, such as holding Americans in captivity and threatening to destroy Israel.

By: Sara Abramowicz, United with Israel