Young, Senate colleagues propose bipartisan plan to deter a nuclear-armed Iran

U.S. Sen. Todd Young (R-IN) joined a bipartisan contingent of his Senate colleagues in providing President Joe Biden with a bipartisan, comprehensive diplomatic strategy on Iran that would garner overwhelming support in Congress.

“Democrats and Republicans may have tactical differences,” Sen. Young and his colleagues wrote in a March 25 letter sent to the president, “but we are united on preventing an Iranian nuclear weapon and addressing the wide range of illicit Iranian behavior.”

Among the more than 40 lawmakers joining Sen. Young in signing the letter were U.S. Sens. Jerry Moran (R-KS), Susan Collins (R-ME), Thom Tillis (R-NC), John Hoeven (R-ND), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN), Steve Daines (R-MT), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Roger Wicker (R-MS), Richard Burr (R-NC), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Joni Ernst (R-IA), Mike Rounds (R-SD), and Bob Menendez (D-NJ).

“We write to reaffirm the long-held view of Congress and presidents from both parties that a nuclear-armed Iran would pose a grave threat to U.S. national security interests and our allies and partners,” wrote Sen. Young and the lawmakers. “We must confront the reality that Iran has accelerated its nuclear activity in alarming ways including increasing its centrifuge research and production and enriching uranium up to 20 percent.”

The senators told President Biden they agree that Iran continues to pose a threat to U.S. and international security through exporting arms, including highly accurate missiles, supporting Shia militias that target U.S. service members, and supporting terrorist organizations and other malign actors throughout the region, according to their letter.  

“We also remain concerned about Iran’s continued human rights abuses of its own citizens and the increasing size and capabilities of its ballistic and cruise missile programs,” they wrote.  

Sen. Young and his colleagues suggested that President Biden “use the full force of our diplomatic and economic tools in concert with our allies on the United Nations Security Council and in the region to reach an agreement that prevents Iran from ever acquiring nuclear weapons and meaningfully constrains its destabilizing activity throughout the Middle East and its ballistic missile program.”

They also suggested that it is critical for the president to consult with the nation’s European allies, Israel, and Gulf security partners on a path forward with Iran, as well as to prioritize the release of all American citizens unjustly detained in Iran, their letter states.

Ripon Advance News Service

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