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September 09, 2015

Andrew McCarthy: The Corker Failure Theater Has Not Legally Begun Yet Because Obama Failed to Meet the Starting Terms For It

McCarthy notes the Corker Deal, as egregious as it was, did lay a few conditions on Obama.

Those conditions have not been met.

The review process under the Corker law never began -- by the law's own terms.

To undermine President Obamaís atrocious Iran deal despite the Republican-controlled Congressís irresponsible Corker legislation, it will be necessary to follow, of all things, the Corker legislation...

While maddening, the Corker bill is not an abject congressional surrender to Obama and Tehran. It is a conditional surrender. It would grant Obama grudging congressional endorsement of the deal in the absence of a now unattainable veto-proof resolution of disapproval, but only if Obama fulfills certain basic terms. Obama has not complied with the most basic one: the mandate that he provide the complete Iran deal for Congressís consideration. Therefore, notwithstanding Washington's frenzied assumption that the 60-day period for a congressional vote is winding down, the clock has never actually started to run. Congressís obligations under Corker have never been triggered; the Corker process is moot.

Obama still hides the side-deals from Congress, ergo, the Corker Sell-Out, no matter how bad, simply does not apply.

McCarthy talks about this more, and the GOP's propensity for Failure Theater, a tactic he calls "Surrender... then Play-Fight." I like Failure Theater better but who knows, pride of authorship.

Now, a few people in the GOP are actually arguing for this.

This omission [of a key side deal] has important legal consequences. At the heart of the act is a provision, negotiated between Congress and the White House, freezing the presidentís ability to "waive, suspend, reduce, provide relief from, or otherwise limit the application of statutory sanctions with respect to Iran" while Congress is reviewing the agreement.

That review period was supposed to take 60 days and is triggered the day the president submits the agreement to Congress. However, because the president failed to submit the agreement in full, as the law requires, the 60-day clock has not started, and the president remains unable lawfully to waive or lift statutory Iran-related sanctions. Indeed, since the act also provides for the transmittal of the agreement to Congress between July 10 and Sept. 7, the presidentís ability to waive statutory sanctions will remain frozen in perpetuity if Congress does not receive the full agreement Monday.

A GOP Representative has offered a privileged motion to force this issue, to declare the clock has not yet begun to run and therefore no vote can be had.

But, get this, Boehner doesn't appear interested in actually blocking this deal:

Earlier Tuesday, Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.) offered a "privileged" resolution to delay the House vote on the Iran nuclear deal until the Obama administration provides Congress with the text of the so-called "side deals" between Iran and international nuclear inspectors.

Under House rules, Roskam's resolution must receive legislative action by Thursday. But it's unclear whether it can move forward in the House and faces even longer odds to clear the Senate.

No, because the GOP thinks it's a "Big Win" to have this vote, destroying American security interests in the Middle East for generations, on 9/11. For some reason they always seem to think that Republican voters are stupid, and will confuse GOP tactical political positioning opportunities for substantive gains on policy grounds.

The McConnell/Boehner wing (and by "Wing" I mean the main force of the GOP) is always willing to trade America's best interests for an opportunity to score some political points against Democrats.

They call this "winning;" I call it something akin to treason.

See, for example, Jim Geraghty blowing a blood vessel over Lindsey Graham's insistence that the Corker Deal was a great one, and even selling out to Harry Reid's demand for a 60 vote threshold for the vote was a great move, because it means we actually get to "have a debate" on the Iran deal.

A debate we are pre-ordained (by the GOP's own actions) to lose -- but the GOP Senators sure will look heroic and principled as they recite rote tough-sounding partisan talking points against the Democrats for passing an Iran deal that the GOP secretly favors themselves.


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posted by Ace at 12:27 PM

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