(UnitedVoice.com) – Getting things done in Washington, DC, requires goodwill and lots of political capital. That’s something President Joe Biden is low on these days. Since August, the president’s polls have been in the tank, and it doesn’t appear that voters are about to change their views anytime soon. Still, there are a lot of things on the president’s plate. Inflation is sky-high, gasoline prices are through the roof, the Russias invaded Ukraine, and the Iran nuclear talks are massive issues.
In 2021, Biden told world leaders that America was back. Yet, he may have spoken too soon, assuming you agree with his assessment that America was ever gone. As Biden tries to navigate Ukraine, Iran is positioning itself to acquire nuclear weapons. The president will need the Senate to get a deal done with the rogue country. Yet, one Democratic Senator could stand in his way, striking fear into the administration that any efforts it makes could face backlash.
One Powerful Senator Could Halt Biden’s Foreign Affairs Agenda
Thanks to moderate Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), Biden’s far-left domestic Build Back Better plan is in shambles. Now, Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) could do much of the same to the president’s foreign affairs proposals. Menendez is the chair of the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee. If Biden wants to get something done regarding foreign affairs, he’ll need Menendez on his side. That could be harder than many might think.
Menendez wields a lot of influence on foreign affairs in the halls of Congress. When the powerful senator opposes something, Democrats listen in fear of what he might say. When US officials approached Venezuela and Iran to replace Russian oil earlier in March, they were concerned Menendez would blister them. Sure enough, he did. The influential New Jersey Senator said that the Democratic aspirations of Venezuelans were worth more than oil—hitting Biden between the eyes by telling him to ground his moral compass.
Menendez is highly influential with Cubans and Venezuelans in Florida. He’s savvy with international communications, and when he speaks, much of the world listens. Even former Trump administration officials listened to Menendez, believing any foreign affairs success would need his input. Some say that the Senator has a high moral belief system that can’t be negotiated away to achieve big goals.
Iran Could Become a Major Policy Failure
The president could test the chair of the Foreign Relations Committee, and soon. As news of a 25-page agreement involving Iran spilled out, it’s possible Menendez could derail the administration’s plans. Iran is demanding that the US remove the terrorist listing of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps. If the administration agrees, it may not have the political capital in the Senate to pull it off.
In 2015, Menendez opposed the Obama administration’s nuclear agreement with Iran. Now, he says that the United States can’t allow Iran to threaten America into a bad deal or allow it to build its nuclear capacity. Under a 2015 law called the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act, the Biden administration must provide the Senate with any new agreement for congressional oversight. This prevents Biden from unilaterally agreeing to a deal as Obama did without Congress having a say in the matter.
If Senate Democrats defeat any deal Biden strikes with Iran, it could be a crushing blow to the administration. It’s entirely possible the administration will be a lame duck for the next three years, especially if the GOP takes back either the House or Senate in November.
Stay tuned. It could get interesting as details of Biden’s arrangement with Iran leak out.
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