Congressional Briefing - December 16, 2014

Congressional Options and Their Likely Consequences for a Nuclear Deal with Iran

Delegations of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, Britain's Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, EU High Representative Catherine Ashton, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi sit around the negotiations table during their meeting in Vienna November 24, 2014

Photo by Joe Klamar/Reuters


Tuesday, December 16, 2014


1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.


B-369 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C.


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About the Program

With nuclear negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 now extended beyond the original November 24 deadline, some members of Congress might now attempt to intervene legislatively. Congressional action could either help or hinder the implementation of whatever deal may be reached. What options are available to Congress, and what are the likely consequences of each for the United States?

RAND analyst Larry Hanauer identified and assessed eight potential courses of action that Congress could take that might either facilitate, hinder, or block implementation of a nuclear deal.

  • To what extent can the president provide Iran with sanctions relief without congressional approval?
  • How can Congress influence the Administration's implementation of an Iran nuclear deal?
  • How might new sanctions passed by Congress affect the implementation of a deal?
  • What could Congress do if Iran fails to comply with an agreement?

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