Mitz-Vote

A New Move to Sever U.S. Business From Iran

By Nathan Guttman

  • Print
  • Share Share

Even in times of bitter partisan bickering, there is one issue that easily gets bipartisan support: the Iranian nuclear threat.

Two Republicans and two Democrats joined forces today to introduce a new piece of legislation meant to keep the pressure on the regime in Tehran. The Iran Transparency and Accountability Act is co-sponsored in the Senate by New York Democrat Kirstin Gillibrand and Illinois Republican Mark Kirk, and in the House by Indiana Republican Dan Burton and Florida Democrat Ted Deutch.

The idea behind this bill is to tighten already existing sanctions against Iran and to close loopholes by going after companies traded in the New York Stock Exchange that have business ties with Iran either directly or through subsidiaries. The bill would require these companies to file a quarterly report with the SEC detailing their dealings with Iran. From there, it will be up to the government to decide if they breached already existing sanctions and if so what measures should be taken against them.

The motivation for such legislation, which was backed by pro-Israel advocacy groups, gathered force following reports prepared by the Government Accounting Office and the Congressional Research Center that listed between 25 to 41 companies that still do business with Iran. The Treasury Department looked at six companies that allegedly broke the sanctions law and decided to forgive five of them since they were taking measures to end ties with Iran. Only one company was actually sanctioned.

“This is the next step to cut business ties with Iran,” said Senator Gillibrand in a news conference call on Wednesday. She stressed that there is a need for a “zero tolerance policy” toward companies that continue to profit from ties with Iran. Senator Kirk added that he has been “very frustrated” with the way sanctions had been enforced thus far.

All four co-sponsors of the legislation seemed optimistic about the chances of the bill passing and stressed that it enjoys support of committee chairs in both chambers.

But history shows that if there is any one barrier for getting such legislation through, it’s the administration, which at times has pushed to delay or water down congressional actions against Iran, fearing they’d interfere with foreign policy interests. So far, the administration has not made its opinion public about this piece of legislation.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Ted Deutch, Mark Kirk, Kirsten Gillibrand, Iran, Dan Burton

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • Taglit-Birthright Israel is redefining who they consider "Jewish" after a 17% drop in registration from 2011-2013. Is the "propaganda tag" keeping young people away?
  • Happy birthday William Shakespeare! Turns out, the Bard knew quite a bit about Jews.
  • Would you get to know racists on a first-name basis if you thought it might help you prevent them from going on rampages, like the recent shooting in Kansas City?
  • "You wouldn’t send someone for a math test without teaching them math." Why is sex ed still so taboo among religious Jews?
  • Russia's playing the "Jew card"...again.
  • "Israel should deal with this discrimination against Americans on its own merits... not simply as a bargaining chip for easy entry to the U.S." Do you agree?
  • For Moroccan Jews, the end of Passover means Mimouna. Terbhou ou Tse'dou! (good luck) How do you celebrate?
  • Calling all Marx Brothers fans!
  • What's it like to run the Palestine International Marathon as a Jew?
  • Does Israel have a racism problem?
  • This 007 hates guns, drives a Prius, and oh yeah — goes to shul with Scarlett Johansson's dad.
  • Meet Alvin Wong. He's the happiest man in America — and an observant Jew. The key to happiness? "Humility."
  • "My first bra was a training bra, a sports bra that gave the illusion of a flat chest."
  • "If the people of Rwanda can heal their broken hearts and accept the Other as human, so can we."
  • Aribert Heim, the "Butcher of Mauthausen," died a free man. How did he escape justice?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.