Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is distinctly unhappy with the U.S.-Iran nuclear deal and has staged a last-ditch effort to persuade President Obama to back off.
After reading the script of Netanyahu’s speech, Obama said the Israeli prime minister could not offer any “viable alternatives” to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon.
Obama’s statement is an indication of his determination to carry the deal through, emphasizing the point that “we don’t yet have a deal” and advised all sides not to “speculate.”
However, lawmakers sympathize with Netanyahu, especially after his speech that received a standing ovation from both sides. Republican House Speaker John Boehner decided to invite Netanyahu in the House despite the president’s stand on the issue.
Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., described the speech as “powerful, persuasive and correct.”
Comparing the deal with the one that handed over areas of Czechoslovakia to Nazi Germany, Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas said, “The deal being negotiated today is reminiscent of Munich in 1938.”
It boils down to whether or not lawmakers may consider a strategy to prevent the Iran deal to see the life of day. One option is to force the issue to be voted in the Congress like any other deals.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky, declared Tuesday that the bill will be voted on next week. Countering him, the president threatened to veto the legislation. However, it is unclear whether the Congress would override.
Despite Netanyahu’s claim that the deal “doesn’t block Iran’s path to the bomb,” Obama persisted that the only purpose of the bill is to prevent Iran from developing its nuke.
Controversy aside, Israel’s friendship with the U.S. remains solid. Netanyahu garnered a standing ovation from the lawmakers of both parties. His speech was interrupted 40 times by applause.