Thank you for contacting me regarding U.S. policy toward Iran. I appreciate hearing from you.
Over the past decade, there have been international concerns that Iran has made progress toward obtaining a nuclear weapon – a prospect that we cannot allow.
In the Senate, I have supported tough sanctions on the Iranian government. Sanctions can be an effective tactic but they do not represent a coherent diplomatic strategy. We must aggressively use all of the political, diplomatic and economic tools available to us to mobilize the international community and ensure the effectiveness of our sanctions.
In November 2013, the Obama Administration along with the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Russia, and China (P5+1) began a series of diplomatic negotiations with Iran on its nuclear program. While I support the efforts to engage Iran and its people through diplomacy, I’m cognizant of the security risks Iran poses to our allies in the region and to the international community at large.
On July 14, 2015, the P5+1 reached an agreement on Iran’s nuclear program. Under the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act, which I supported, Congress now has 60 days to review the final text. Our primary goal must be to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. That would be the worst outcome. In evaluating this deal, we must weigh the terms of the agreement against the realities of the current situation. I am carefully reviewing the agreement and consulting with a variety of experts. Congress has an important responsibility in this process, and playing politics right now is the last thing we need. The stakes are high, and I take this decision very seriously.
Like many Coloradans, I am deeply concerned by many other issues with the Iranian government. In May 2015, the Senate passed a resolution calling on Iran to release all U.S. citizens wrongly detained in that country and to work with our government to locate missing U.S. citizens. I supported that amendment and will continue to address other areas of concern.
I value the input of fellow Coloradans in considering the wide variety of important issues and legislative initiatives that come before the Senate. I hope you will continue to inform me of your thoughts and concerns.
For more information about my priorities as a U.S. Senator, I invite you to visit my website at http://bennet.senate.gov/. Again, thank you for contacting me.
Michael F. Bennet
United States Senator