Democrats to Obama: Stay on Course

May 7, 2015

On May 7, Representatives Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), and David Price (D-NC) sent a letter to President Obama expressing support for the nuclear negotiations with Iran. It was signed by 150 Democratic members of Congress. The letter urged the president to "stay on course" and move toward "a strong and verifiable agreement" between Iran and the world's six major powers. The following is the full text of the letter.

Dear Mr. President:
 
As negotiations over Iran's nuclear program continue, we urge you to stay on course, building on the recently announced political framework and continuing to work toward a strong and verifiable agreement between the P5+1 countries and Iran that will prevent Iran from having a nuclear weapon.  We commend you and your negotiating team, as well as our coalition partners, for the significant progress made thus far.
 
This issue is above politics. The stakes are too great, and the alternatives are too dire. We must exhaust every avenue toward a verifiable, enforceable, diplomatic solution in order to prevent a nuclear-armed Iran.  If the United States were to abandon negotiations or cause their collapse, not only would we fail to peacefully prevent a nuclear-armed Iran, we would make that outcome more likely.  The multilateral sanctions regime that brought Iran to the table would likely collapse, and the Iranian regime would likely decide to accelerate its nuclear program, unrestricted and unmonitored.  Such developments could lead us to war.
 
War itself will not make us safe.  A U.S. or Israeli military strike may set back Iranian nuclear development by two or three years at best - a significantly shorter timespan than that covered by a P5+1 negotiated agreement.  We must pursue diplomatic means to their fullest and allow the negotiations to run their course – especially now that the parties have announced a strong framework – and continue working to craft a robust and verifiable Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action by June 30.
 
We must allow our negotiating team the space and time necessary to build on the progress made in the political framework and turn it into a long-term, verifiable agreement.  If we do not succeed, Congress will remain at-the-ready to act and present you with additional options to ensure that Iran is prevented from acquiring a nuclear weapon
 
Thank you for your resolve in preventing a nuclear-armed Iran.  We look forward to continuing our shared work on this important matter.
 
Sincerely,
 
Jan Schakowsky                  Lloyd Doggett                     David E. Price
Member of Congress           Member of Congress           Member of Congress
 
Signed by:
 
Adams, Alma
Kildee
Aguilar
Kind, Ron
Ashford
Kuster
Bass
Langevin
Beatty
Larsen
Becerra
Larson
Bera
Lawrence
Beyer
Lee
Bishop, S.
Lewis
Blumenauer
Lieu
Bonamici
Loebsack
Bordallo
Lofgren
Brady
Lowenthal
Brown, Corrine
Lujan
Brownley
Lujan Grisham
Bustos
Lynch
Butterfield
Maloney, S
Capps
Matsui
Capuano
McCollum
Cardenas
McDermott
Carney
McGovern
Carson
McNerney
Cartwright
Meeks
Castor
Moore
Castro
Moulton
Chu
Napolitano
Cicilline
Neal
Clark, Katherine
Nolan
Clarke, Yvette
Norton
Clay
O'Rourke
Cleaver
Payne
Clyburn
Pelosi
Cohen
Perlmutter
Connolly
Pierluisi
Conyers
Pingree
Courtney
Plaskett
Cummings
Pocan
Davis, D.
Polis
Davis, S.
Price
DeFazio
Rangel
DeGette
Richmond
DeLauro
Roybal-Allard
DelBene
Ruiz
DeSaulnier
Ruppersberger
Dingell
Rush
Doggett
Ryan, Tim
Doyle
Sablan
Duckworth
Sanchez, Linda
Edwards
Sanchez, Loretta
Ellison
Schakowsky
Eshoo
Scott, Bobby
Esty
Scott, David
Farr
Serrano
Fattah
Sewell
Foster
Slaughter
Fudge
Smith, Adam
Gallego
Speier
Garamendi
Swalwell
Green, Al
Takai
Grijalva
Takano
Gutierrez
Thompson, B.
Hahn
Thompson, M.
Heck
Tonko
Higgins
Torres
Hinojosa
Tsongas
Honda
Van Hollen
Huffman
Veasey
Jackson Lee
Velazquez
Jeffries
Visclosky
Johnson, E.B.
Walz
Johnson, H.
Waters
Kaptur
Watson Coleman
Keating
Welch
Kelly
Wilson
Kennedy
Yarmuth