Anti-Iran Deal Resolution Dies, Local Republicans Get Nasty

Sen. Michael Bennet, President Barack Obama.

Sen. Michael Bennet, President Barack Obama.


In a significant win for White House, Senate Democrats Thursday blocked a Republican resolution of disapproval of the Iran nuclear deal from going to a final vote.

That means President Barack Obama won’t be forced to veto the legislation and drag out for several more weeks an ugly battle with the GOP-controlled Congress over the accord he has fought hard to secure.

The vote on the procedural motion to move to a final vote, which needed 60 votes to pass, failed 58 to 42.

Obama welcomed the outcome in a statement Thursday afternoon.

“This vote is a victory for diplomacy, for American national security, and for the safety and security of the world,” Obama said. “I am heartened that so many senators judged this deal on the merits, and am gratified by the strong support of lawmakers and citizens alike.”

Scary Iran graphic via the internets.

Scary Iran graphic via the internets.

One of the votes to kill the Republican disapproval motion against the nuclear weapons agreement with Iran was Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet. In an AP story yesterday, Bennet opened up about his personal deliberations over the deal, which made him one of the last Democratic Senators to come out in support–deliberations that were influenced at least in part by his own family history:

Bennet’s grandparents smuggled his mother, who was still a baby, out of the Warsaw Ghetto in Poland to escape the Nazis. They, too, had “everyone and everything they knew taken from them in the Holocaust,” Bennet said.

Both senators [Bennet and Ron Wyden] said the Iran deal is a flawed agreement with an adversary that has threatened both the United States and Israel. But both said they strongly believe the agreement offers the best hope of keeping Iran from getting a nuclear weapon.

“We live in dangerous times, and whether you support the agreement or not, we must develop a cohesive strategy for U.S. policy in the Middle East that addresses the grave security concerns in the region,” Bennet said. “We cannot allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon, and we must be crystal clear that we will use force to prevent it from doing so.”

In response to today’s vote, which effectively kills any chance Republicans had to even pass a resolution disapproving the Iran nuclear deal, let alone override a veto as they had hoped for only a month ago, local Republicans fired off a stupefying attack on Bennet–actually attempting to use his family’s history as victims of the Holocaust against him for this vote. Local blog Colorado Peak Politics penned what we must assume will be the new GOP line of attack on Bennet over the deal:

An Associated Press report yesterday noted that embattled U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet was one of two Senators supporting the Iran deal whose family members were victims of the Holocaust. It’s almost as if we are expected to excuse Bennet his bad policy decision that would empower Iran, which has threatened to obliterate Israel, because his family experienced the Holocaust.

Folks, attacking Sen. Bennet for supporting the Iran nuclear weapons deal because his mother is a Holocaust survivor is wildly, offensively inappropriate–and should be condemned across party lines. First of all, it’s opponents of this deal who have used and abused the Holocaust as a way to undermine support for it, not supporters. The likening of Iran to Nazi Germany has indeed been one of the most popular comparisons invoked by opponents of the deal. And again, it is Bennet’s family’s personal experience with the Holocaust that slowed Bennet’s decision, making him one of the final Democrats to come out in support of the agreement.

The deal is not perfect or all inclusive, but that could describe many hard-negotiated agreements that today we consider a success. Above all, this agreement is about reducing hostilities in the Middle East, not escalating them. Even if you disagree, can’t we at least be decent enough to keep Bennet’s mother out of it?

Then again, if this low blow is all opponents have left, maybe the debate is already over.

36 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. vanbarbee says:

    Party that supports racist, war hero bashing, misogynistic, neo-Nazi approved, ignorant, fake, still racist, whiny, still misogynistic, bloviating idiot Donald Trump make the Holocaust jump on upstanding Colorado senior Senator. I'm not really seeing the news here…other than our country is still home to many, many assholes. 

  2. Moderatus says:

    Nope, Bennet's family history is fair game. He just betrayed his nation. Both nations.

  3. BlueCat says:

    You can bet that most of the Israeli supporters of the deal in the military and in intelligence also have relatives who were either Holocaust survivors or victims. This is a despicable line of attack.  Obviously supporters feel that this deal makes us and Israel and the world safer. They don't need to be excused by anybody, least of all the fools at Colorado Peak Politics.

    While Rs keep claiming that Dems are the enemies of Jews and Israel, they ignore the fact that Jewish Americans routinely reject the Republican party at the polls by wide margins. They tell us Obama is an anti-Semite even though most of the closest advisers he brought with him to the WH were Jews and Jews voted for him by landslide margins both times. 

    Where do these ass hats get off telling Jews (and BTW Bennet is Jewish according to Jewish law because his mother is) what their duties are toward honoring the victims and survivors of the Holocaust. The majority of those survivors here in America were life long Democrats and the majority of their children and grandchildren still are and would vote for Obama again. And the majority would join me in a hearty "Screw you" to the folks at Colorado Peak Politics for this deplorable insult. 

    No matter what the big Jewish lobbies say, they've never been able to stop most of us from supporting Dems over the decades, most often by 3 to 1 or more, rarely as little as 2 to 1. According to Rs that means most of us have been supporting anti-Semitic Democrats so they must think we're stupid, self loathing or both. Actually that sounds pretty anti-Semitic to me. Modster says we’re all traitors. he can rot in hell.

    • mamajama55 says:

      +1939 Bluecat.  As a daughter and granddaughter of Holocaust refugees who fled Austria because their Jewish ancestry made them Hitler's targets, I join you in a hearty "Screw you!" to the dimwits at Colopeakpolitics.

      Mom and her family were tagged as "Hebrews" on the boat's passenger list, because there were quotas. Some of the extended family died in the camps, because they couldn't or wouldn't escape their Jewish identities. All the ones who came to the US changed their names to sound non-Jewish, because they knew Americans were almost as anti-Semitic as the Nazis.

      But she never felt that she owed a thing to Israel, least of all knee-jerk loyalty. I think she would have supported this Iran deal, because it offers the best hope for peace, and only people who have actually survived wars really appreciate peace.

      • BlueCat says:

        My family on both sides were all here by 1921 but none of my grandparents' cousins remaining in the USSR survived the war, at least not as far my great aunt could discover. I can completely understand Jews who made it to the US fleeing the Holocaust and who were lucky enough not to be turned away as most were at our ports, wanting to just disassociate from their Jewish identity that had proved so lethal. It was different for those of us whose families came here a from the late 1800s through the early 20s, after which the US stopped letting most Jews in. My parents generation felt secure in their American identity and considered any anti-Semitism they ran into as more of an annoyance than a life or death threat. Yours had a very different experience as did Bennet's. But none of us need to be instructed by jerks who don't know WTF they're talking about on where our loyalties should lie or what should constitute those loyalties.

    • slavdude says:

      I am Jewish on my father’s side. My family name is so rare that anyone who has it or a variation of it is related. We lost relatives to the Holocaust too, and I support the deal (my dad may not, but that’s because he has been swallowed by the Fox noise machine). I love my country–the United States. The deal with Iran is flawed, to be sure, but I think we are all better off with it in the long run.

      People like Moderatus who think otherwise and who seem to be in thrall to the histrionics of people such as Netanyahu are just pitiful, more than anything else.

      Perhaps the neo-Nazis are right that there is a Jewish conspiracy in this country: TEH EVIL JOOZ are dictating to people such as Moddy et al., i.e., to the American right, not to the left, as they supposedly did of old.

      (Sorry for the slight loss of coherence. I’ve had a few frustrating weeks at work.)

  4. Conserv. Head Banger says:

    Moderatus wrote:  "he just betrayed his nation; both nations."  And what might be the second nation you refer to? I didn't know Bennet had a dual citizenship. Please enlighten me. Moving on, several things have impressed me about the Iran deal.

    1) it isn't perfect, yet numerous retired Israeli generals and two retired heads of Mossad have endorsed it as the best alternative.

    2) Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel has been among the most vocal opponents of the treaty. Yet, he barely has a majority of Israeli citizens supporting him. He has a 1 vote majority in the Knesset.

    3) congressional Republicans have had no alternative to offer other than more sanctions.

    4) Britain, France, Germany, China, Russia have all signed the treaty. If Iran signs off, those five nations WILL eliminate the bulk of their sanctions over time.

    5) Supreme Leader Khameni (sp.) talks about obliteration of Israel. That's bluster, in my opinion, because he knows that if he bombs Israel, their retaliation with THEIR nukes will turn Iran into a radioactive wasteland. The mullahs also sit on a powder keg of 80 million persons, most born after the 1979 revolution. Young people in Iran want contact with the West; want internet; and want better economic opportunities than what the mullahs are providing.

    6) the Islamic bomb has existed for 30 years, in Pakistan. Whose to say that Iran doesn’t already have a bomb? Even though Pak. is Sunni and Iran Shiite, they have common interests in fighting militants in Balochistan (s.w. Pak., s.e. Iran).      

    Regards,  C.H.B.   (the Conservative voice of Common Sense)

    (for what it’s worth, I also lost distant relatives in the Holocaust. I don’t know if they were Jewish; worth remembering that many more millions besides Jews were killed by the Nazis)

  5. Canines says:

    New York Times: Why Republicans Reject the Iran Deal — and All Diplomacy

    In hurling brickbats at the president, the modern-day inheritors of the hardline tradition — from the Republican leadership to Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer — are simply reminding Americans of earlier episodes of right-wing rejectionism. Today, those past backlashes against important diplomatic overtures appear discredited and foolish.

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