Paresh Nath, The Khaleej Times, UAE

Iran Treaty or Bill?

Corker Bill Broadens Oversight on Treaty

The Constitution of the United States of America was adopted 13 years after the Declaration of Independence of 1776. It established the fundamental law of our country. Let us consider Article ll, Section 2 which defines the requirement of the President for Senate approval for treaties he wishes to make:

“He shall have Power, by, and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur;”

The Iran Treaty cannot be the law of the land until the Senate has approved it by a two-thirds majority. However, in a most sleazy maneuver, Republican Senator Bob Corker introduced a bill which circumvents this clear and unambiguous constitutional mandate regarding Obama’s Iran Treaty. Corker’s bill attempts to highjack the constitutional treaty provision by making it a regular Senate bill that is to be voted on by Congress. Under this bill, if Congress votes it down, the president can simply veto it, and then Congress has to override his veto by a two-thirds majority. This is impossible, at least in the Senate.

Under the Constitution the President needs a two-thirds majority vote from the Senate to pass the Iran Treaty, but now Congress needs a two-thirds majority to stop the president from passing the Iran Treaty.

Our Constitution just got turned upside-down. This is the most underhanded and egregious usurpation of our constitutional protections against a monarch getting us entangled in this Iran Treaty. America just got shafted.

The Senate Majority Leader, Republican Mitch McConnell, is just as complicit by permitting this atrocious Corker bill undermining our Constitution to even be brought up in the Senate. Similarly, the Speaker of the House, Republican John Boehner got involved and took up the bill in the House of Representatives. Why?

The Iran Treaty itself is dangerous and stinks to high heaven with all of its secret deals. Did we not learn anything from Nancy Pelosi when she claimed that we had to pass the Obamacare legislation to find out what is in it?

Obama just got fast-track authority with the 1,000 pages of Trade Promotion Authority and Trans-Pacific Partnership bills, which permitted members of Congress to only view sections of it for limited periods of time in the basement, without taking notes, after giving up their cell phones and agreeing not to disclose anything about it. Adolf Hitler also requested absolute power, got it, and used it with horrible results. Did we not learn from these?

Similarly, the Corker bill fails to give the details of his Iran bill. Congress needs to stop playing Americans for fools.

Secretary of State John Kerry has clarified the administration’s unconstitutional perspective on this treaty. He stated that since it is impossible to get a treaty passed, he does not regard the treaty as a treaty at all and therefore needs to circumvent the constitutionally required Senate vote. He therefore circumvented the constitutionally required two-thirds passing vote by the Senate by engaging Senator Corker to introduce the treaty as a regular congressional bill, the Corker bill. But, if it quacks like a duck and walks like a duck, it is a duck. It is impossible to redefine reality, and Congress needs to stop playing Americans for fools.

Therefore, regardless of the Corker bill, the U.S. Senate needs to stop, get a spine, and take a vote on Obama’s Iran Treaty just as the Constitution requires. If the treaty gets two-thirds approval, it passes. If not, the treaty is dead and gone. The Corker bill is insidious and superfluous.

Wake up, America. Do not let our Constitution be high-jacked. Our Senators and Representatives and President are not above our Constitution.

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