Obama Locks Up Iran Deal With 34th Senator

Thanks to Barbara Mikulski, GOP now can't override presidential veto
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 2, 2015 8:38 AM CDT
Updated Sep 2, 2015 9:41 AM CDT
Obama Is One Senator Away From His Iran Deal
President Barack Obama waves as he leaves the stage after speaking about the nuclear deal with Iran on Aug. 5, 2015, at American University in Washington.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Earlier this morning, President Obama was "on the brink" of wrapping up the Iran nuclear deal after Democratic Sens. Bob Casey and Chris Coons threw their support his way, the Wall Street Journal reports. Now Maryland's Barbara Mikulski has given her thumbs-up, giving the president the magic number of 34 senators he needs to block a Senate override of his expected veto if the GOP tries to push through a resolution disapproving of the deal next week. "No deal is perfect, especially one negotiated with the Iranian regime," Mikulski said in a statement, per Roll Call. "[But] I have concluded that this Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action is the best option available to block Iran from having a nuclear bomb. ... However, Congress must also reaffirm our commitment to the safety and security of Israel."

Two Democrats in the Senate have sided with their GOP counterparts against the deal, while 10 haven't said where they stand yet, Bloomberg notes. To filibuster the Republican resolution and keep a veto completely out of the picture, a total of 41 senators is needed, and now supporters of Obama's Iran deal are optimistic they can reach that number, too, the New York Times reports. Coons said yesterday it would be "a very close call" to acquire those 41 votes, adding that conversations he's had with all of the undecideds gave him no clear picture on whether they'd vote yea or nay, per Bloomberg. (More President Obama stories.)

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