By: Post Editorial Board, New York Post—
Whether to approve the disastrous nuclear deal with Iran is the most important question to face Congress in years — yet the president wants to stop the Senate from even debating it.
He’s pushing Democrats to use the filibuster rule to stop the question from making it to the Senate floor — and Minority Leader Harry Reid’s rallying the votes to do it.
Of course, President Obama never wanted Congress to have a say here. But Congress voted itself an oversight role anyway — by 98-1 in the Senate.
Now Reid’s rounding up Democrats to derail the process they helped set up to “ensure the American people — through their elected representatives — a voice on any deal with Iran.”
Solid majorities in each house of Congress oppose the deal — as does an ever-growing majority of the American people, as every poll shows.
It’s easy to see why: Far from denying Iran a nuclear weapon, it (at best) leaves Tehran a nuclear breakout state in 15 years.
And it gives Iran hundreds of billions of dollars to aid its terrorist allies and buy countless non-nuclear arms — because the deal repeals all embargoes on Iran.
You can see why the president doesn’t want this debated on the Senate floor.
Yes, he can veto the resolution of disapproval and have his deal go ahead anyway, since opponents don’t seem to have the votes to override a veto. But he doesn’t want the embarrassment — or the risk that debate might actually change a few minds.
Obama may well succeed. New York’s Chuck Schumer and New Jersey’s Bob Menendez are so far the only Senate Democrats to publicly oppose the deal — and Schumer is sitting on his hands, refusing to press his colleagues or even speak out publicly.
This is an obscenity. The Senate calls itself “the world’s greatest deliberative body.” And the Constitution requires Senate consent for the approval of treaties.
Obama’s already done an end-run around the treaty rules. Will Senate Democrats enable even worse — a total mockery of Congress’ role?
It’s time for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to go nuclear: To do just what Reid threatened when he ran the Senate, and change the rules for the filibuster.
It need only cover this unique case — but McConnell ought to force Democrats to actually filibuster if they want to prevent this vote.
To stand up on the floor, hour after hour, day after day — making a spectacle of themselves for all the nation, all the world, to see.
To show they’re that afraid of putting themselves on record on perhaps the most important question of their careers.
Obama and Reid are resorting to low politics on an issue vital to the nation. Republicans have a duty to finally answer hardball with hardball.