At a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on Thursday, Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D., Conn.) expressed his concern about Iran’s ballistic missile program and asked Secretary of Defense Ash Carter if increased sanctions should be brought against Iran.
“Finally, I have long been concerned, as many of my colleagues have been, about the Iran ballistic missile program, its continuing testing. I led a letter to President Obama with a number of my colleagues calling for immediate enforcement of sanctions against Iran and the Department of Treasury, following the letter, did indeed enforce sanctions against eleven entities and individuals supporting Iran’s missile program, Blumenthal said.
“Clearly, more must be done to deter Iran from continued aggressive pursuit of this program,” Blumenthal said. “General Votel and General Austin, literally within the past week or so, testified to this committee about the need for increased sanctions. Do you agree?”
“I do. That’s not our responsibility at the Department, but a responsibility of the Department that we very much fulfill and I know you discussed with them, is our defensive commitments with respect to Iranian ballistic missiles,” Carter said.
Blumenthal did vote in favor of the deal that the Obama Administration and other countries struck with Iran. The deal was heavily criticized by Republicans for giving Iran too much of what they asked for, reducing sanctions against the terror-sponsoring state, and having too few measures to make sure that Iran lives up to its end of the deal.