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!
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • Planning on catching "Fading Gigolo" this weekend? Read our review.
  • A new initiative will spend $300 million a year towards strengthening Israel's relationship with the Diaspora. http://jd.fo/q3Iaj Is this money spent wisely?
  • Lusia Horowitz left pre-state Israel to fight fascism in Spain — and wound up being captured by the Nazis and sent to die at Auschwitz. Share her remarkable story — told in her letters.
  • Vered Guttman doesn't usually get nervous about cooking for 20 people, even for Passover. But last night was a bit different. She was cooking for the Obamas at the White House Seder.
  • A grumpy Jewish grandfather is wary of his granddaughter's celebrating Easter with the in-laws. But the Seesaw says it might just make her appreciate Judaism more. What do you think?
  • “Twist and Shout.” “Under the Boardwalk.” “Brown-Eyed Girl.” What do these great songs have in common? A forgotten Jewish songwriter. We tracked him down.
  • What can we learn from tragedies like the rampage in suburban Kansas City? For one thing, we must keep our eyes on the real threats that we as Jews face.
  • When is a legume not necessarily a legume? Philologos has the answer.
  • "Sometime in my childhood, I realized that the Exodus wasn’t as remote or as faceless as I thought it was, because I knew a former slave. His name was Hersh Nemes, and he was my grandfather." Share this moving Passover essay!
  • Getting ready for Seder? Chag Sameach! http://jd.fo/q3LO2
  • "We are not so far removed from the tragedies of the past, and as Jews sit down to the Seder meal, this event is a teachable moment of how the hatred of Jews-as-Other is still alive and well. It is not realistic to be complacent."
  • Aperitif Cocktail, Tequila Shot, Tom Collins or Vodka Soda — Which son do you relate to?
  • Elvis craved bacon on tour. Michael Jackson craved matzo ball soup. We've got the recipe.
  • This is the face of hatred.
  • 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.