Senate Democrats clear way for Iran nuclear deal

September 10, 2015Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 5.22.53 PM

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 5.25.14 PMSenate Democrats delivered a major victory to President Obama on Thursday when they blocked a Republican resolution to reject a six-nation nuclear accord with Iran, ensuring that the landmark deal will take effect without a veto showdown between Congress and the White House.

A procedural vote fell short of the number needed to break a Democratic filibuster. It culminated hours of debate on the Senate floor and capped months of discord since the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China announced the agreement with Iran in July.

Debate over the accord divided Democrats between their loyalties to the president and their constituents, especially Jewish ones, animated the antiwar movement on the left and exposed the waning power of the Israeli lobbying force that spent millions to prevent the accord.

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Regardless of how one feels about the agreement, said Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, one of four Democrats to vote against the president, fair-minded Americans should acknowledge the president’s strong achievements in combating and containing Iran.

Acknowledging the tortured decision he and other skeptical Democrats traveled, Mr. Schumer said, I also have a great deal of respect for the careful thought and deliberation my colleagues went through, adding, I recognize for them, that this is a vote of conscience just as it is for me.

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