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Ex-US Lawmakers Endorse Nuclear Pact
National

Ex-US Lawmakers Endorse Nuclear Pact

Dozens of former members of the US Congress want lawmakers on the job to know they sympathize with the stress they feel over the Iran nuclear deal, but that they should vote for it anyway.
The message is contained in the latest in a slew of letters being sent to Congress by both opponents and supporters of the nuclear deal ahead of the mid-September vote whether to reject it. It warns that the risks of scuttling the agreement “include the increased likelihood of a military confrontation,” Politico reported.  
“We appreciate the gravity of your decision and the considerable pressure that you are under as you weigh the merits of this agreement and the costs of failure to implement it,” wrote the 75 lawmakers, all but four of them Democrats.  “Supporting the agreement does not come without risks. But these risks must be considered in the context of the grave risks that would be incurred if you were to reject it.”
Notable signatories include former Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana, a Republican who has long been active in promoting nuclear non-proliferation, and former Sen. George Mitchell of Maine, a Democrat who served as a special envoy to the Middle East.
“We know of no viable alternatives to the [deal] that is now before you,” the former lawmakers said in the letter, dated Monday. “We agree that no deal is better than a bad deal. But we also agree that a good deal is better than no deal.”
As the August recess winds down, the Obama administration has grown more confident that it has enough support in Congress among Democrats to ensure the deal survives. That has not stopped groups on both sides of the issue from trying to make their case, whether through television ads, letter campaigns or other means.  
The lawmakers under the most pressure are undecided Democrats, including some from the New York and New Jersey area who have significant Jewish constituencies.

 

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