Citing Iran’s support for Hamas and Hizballah and its threats to wipe Israel off the map, this resolution rejects all policies seeking to ‘contain’ a nuclear weapons–capable Iran and urges the president to oppose any such policies. It is noteworthy that Pres. Obama’s stated policy at the time was to prevent Iran from producing a nuclear weapon, whereas this resolution focused on preventing Iran from gaining nuclear weapons capability.
Though the resolution had 15 Democrats among its cosponsors, the administration’s Iran policy was a largely partisan issue. Growing fears in the Obama admin. that PM Netanyahu was using Congress and the Republicans to pressure the president into a tougher stance on Iran gained credence when this resolution was introduced 3 weeks before AIPAC’s annual conference in Washington.
The resolution originally included a clause declaring it to be ‘within the power and capabilities’ of the U.S. to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability, but the language was removed because Democratic senators thought it could appear to suggest authorization to use force against Iran. Democrats also pressed for a clause urging continued diplomatic and economic pressures until Iran shut down its nuclear program. This measure was the centerpiece of the mobilization efforts against Iran at the annual AIPAC conference, held in 3/2012, and on the final day of the conference thousands of delegates pressed the case in meetings with their congressmen and women.
77 cosponsors (41R, 35D, 1I)
See also: similar measures H. Res. 568 of 3/1/12, S. J. Res. 41 of 5/24/12, and S.A. 2346 to S. 3240 of 5/24/12.
Last major action: 2/16/12 referred to Senate Cmte. on Foreign Relations.