Maryland senator’s backing of Iran nuclear deal blocks veto override

Maryland Senator Barbara Mikulski. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

( U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) announced on Wednesday that she would back President Barack Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran, becoming the 34th senator to support the deal and ensuring enough supporting votes to prevent an override of a presidential veto of any Congressional rejection of the pact.

“No deal is perfect, especially one negotiated with the Iranian regime,” Mikulski said in a statement. “I have concluded that this Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action is the best option available to block Iran from having a nuclear bomb. For these reasons, I will vote in favor of this deal. However, Congress must also reaffirm our commitment to the safety and security of Israel.”

Congress is in the midst of a 60-day period to review the Iran nuclear deal. Virtually every Republican in the Senate (there are currently 54 Republicans among the 100 U.S. senators) has come out against the deal, as have two Democrats—U.S. Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Robert Menendez (D-N.J.). But while the Senate is likely to reject the deal with a simple majority, Obama has said he will veto any such Congressional disapproval. The Senate would have needed a two-thirds majority of 67 votes against the agreement to override that veto, but Mikulski's support for the deal ensures that such a scenario will not materialize.

Earlier this week, U.S. Sens. Bob Casey (D-Pa.) and Chris Coons (D-Del.) became the 32nd and 33rd supporters of the deal in the Senate, respectively. 

Posted on September 2, 2015 .