Washington, DC - Today, Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), Ranking Member of the House Intelligence Committee, released the following statement:
“Iran is a uniquely dangerous and destructive actor, and the United States should be working with our allies to impose consequences for its malign activities in Syria, its reported attempt to carry out an assassination in Denmark, and other destabilizing actions. However, by abandoning our commitment to a nuclear agreement that Iran and other countries have been abiding by, the Trump Administration is undermining our national security.
“The Iran nuclear agreement was not designed to prevent all of Iran’s destructive behavior, but it was intended to prevent the greatest threat to our country and our allies — a nuclear armed Iran. President Trump’s decision to unilaterally reimpose all sanctions on Iran that were lifted under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action — without evidence that Iran had violated the nuclear agreement — will further distance us from our allies while increasing the risk that Iran could restart its dormant nuclear program. It is a serious and self-inflicted injury to America's global leadership and our ability to negotiate durable agreements with our allies and adversaries.
“In reinstating these particular sanctions without justification, Trump is pitting the United States against our European allies, and increasing our reliance on Saudi Arabia at a time when that country is implicated in a plot to assassinate a journalist and an outspoken critic on foreign soil. The downside risks to this policy are manifold – it could cause Iran to restart its nuclear enrichment efforts, bringing us closer to a military confrontation. The Trump Administration’s unilateral re-imposition of these sanctions will also accelerate efforts to facilitate transactions through alternative financial channels that are not reachable by U.S. sanctions and into which we will have limited visibility. The result will do long term damage to our ability to effectively deploy sanctions as an alternative to military action, and impair our efforts to detect and disrupt illicit financial dealings. It will be up to Congress to undertake rigorous oversight of this ill-considered policy.”