Republicans have needlessly undermined their ability to resist the Iran deal

Enter the Corker legislation. It undermined the Constitution’s presumption against international agreements by shifting the burden of persuasion: Rather than forcing the president to persuade two-thirds of the Senate to approve the deal, it imposes on opponents the burden of persuading two-thirds of the full Congress to reject it.

Even worse, this scheme also undermines the Constitution’s legislative process. The Corker legislation authorizes the president to waive sanctions against Iran even if Congress fails to pass, or to get the president to sign, a resolution approving the waiver. In fact, even if Congress passes a resolution disapproving Obama’s Iran deal, the Corker legislation allows Obama to veto the resolution and waive the sanctions anyway. (See “(c) EFFECT OF CONGRESSIONAL ACTION WITH RESPECT TO NUCLEAR AGREEMENTS WITH IRAN,” subsection (2) describing “statutory sanctions relief” procedure.)

Sasse’s letter observes that Obama “administration officials have all but admitted that the sanctions relief will be used by Iran at some level to support terrorism.” Yup.