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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Rep. Alan Grayson supports Iran deal

9

September

Rep. Alan Grayson of Orlando announced support for the Iran nuclear deal this evening, giving President Obama a clear advantage among Florida Democrats.

Grayson also aligns with his U.S. Senate rival Patrick Murphy.

Florida Democrats in favor of the deal

Debbie Wasserman Schultz
Kathy Castor
Patrick Murphy
Frederica Wilson
Corrine Brown
Alan Grayson

Florida Democrats opposed to the deal

Lois Frankel
Ted Deutch
Alcee Hastings

Undeclared

Gwen Graham

Here is Grayson's statement:

I am supporting the Iran nuclear agreement because I have concluded that rejection of the agreement is substantially more risky—for the United States, Israel, and the region—than adoption of the agreement.

In the absence of an agreement, there is a very substantial risk that the international economic sanctions against Iran would collapse immediately. There is also a very significant risk that Iran would quickly obtain its accrued oil revenue, without any conditions whatsoever. This could not only fund Iran’s unrestrained nuclear program, but also lead to an expansion in its support for international terrorism.

In the absence of an agreement, there is a significant risk that Iran might immediately try to develop nuclear weapons. Some have said that Iran could create a nuclear weapon by the end of this year, in the absence of this agreement. Such an effort, in turn, could trigger another war in the Middle East, with very uncertain results. At this point, were the agreement to be rejected, there is no visible way to avoid this worst-case scenario, in which Iran has the potential to get both the money and the bomb—and quickly.

In contrast, if the agreement is implemented, then the primary risk is that Iran might try to cheat its way to nuclear weapons during the agreement period. I am satisfied that our intelligence community would very likely detect such an effort, quickly. And I would hope that the United States and our allies would quash it, armed with the moral authority that Iran would be violating the agreement.

I am mindful of the fact that some have suggested that rejection of the agreement might “bring Iran back to the table,” and might result in a better agreement. I’ve seen no evidence to support that hypothesis.

This agreement is far from perfect. I wish that it were far broader, and that it would bring us closer to peace in the Middle East. But the enormous risk of rejecting it, in my mind, outweighs the risk of accepting it. For this reason, I will be voting in favor of this agreement on the House Floor.

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 9, 2015 8:50pm]

    

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