(Washington, D.C.) Representative Charlie Dent (PA-15) released this statement today regarding President Obama’s announcement of a nuclear deal with Iran:

“America entered these nuclear negotiations from a position of strength, thanks to the successful impact of congressionally driven sanctions – which President Obama reluctantly accepted. Lower oil prices increased the pain of the sanctions and thus our bargaining power. Unfortunately, President Obama acts as if we need a deal more than the Ayatollahs.

After a preliminary review of the agreement, it appears the deal allows Iran nearly one month to conceal their nuclear activities prior to any inspection. Verification cannot be efficacious under this provision. On sanctions relief, all nuclear related sanctions are lifted after two months unless Congress acts. As far as “snapback sanctions” are concerned, in the event of Iranian noncompliance with this agreement, no one even pretends that such sanctions could ever be re-imposed given Russia and China’s veto power and divergent regional security interests and goals.

We should heed the warning of former Secretaries of State Henry Kissinger and George Schultz, who wrote months ago, ‘negotiations that began 12 years ago as an international effort to prevent an Iranian capability to develop a nuclear arsenal are ending with an agreement that concedes this very capability.’

As Iran continues its march towards nuclear arms, does anyone believe for a moment that the Sunni nations in the region won’t undertake nuclear programs of their own? It would jeopardize the safety and security of the world to have a nuclear arms race in the Middle East – a region of state instability and irrational non-state actors like ISIS, Al Qaeda, Nusra Front, and others.

I will need more time to analyze this agreement, but under no circumstances will I support a deal that leads to further nuclear proliferation or enables Iran to further its destabilizing influence in the Middle East.”

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Representative Dent serves as the Chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction and Veterans Affairs. He also serves as the Chairman of the House Committee on Ethics.

Contact: Shawn Millan (610) 770-3490