House Bill Would Bar Biden Admin From Spending Taxpayer Dollars on Diplomacy To Advance Iran Nuclear Deal

Rep. Bob Good proposes bill to block Iran diplomacy until it severs cash ties to China and ends Hamas support

Rep. Bob Good (Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)
April 11, 2024

Republican legislation in the House would bar the Biden administration from spending taxpayer dollars to advance a nuclear deal with Iran until the hardline regime severs its cash ties to China and terminates support for Hamas, according to a copy of the bill obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.

Rep. Bob Good (R., Va.) will introduce the legislation on Thursday, sources told the Free Beacon, putting Iran’s alliance with China center stage as both regimes work to implement a 25-year cooperation agreement worth $400 billion.

Good’s bill, which is likely to attract widespread support in the narrowly GOP-controlled House, blocks the Biden administration from spending taxpayer funds on diplomacy related to a revamped version of the 2015 nuclear deal, which the United States has been pursuing off-and-on since President Joe Biden took office. Elements of the bill are likely to be popular with Republicans in the Senate who have made similar proposals.

Unlike similar legislative efforts pushed by Republicans during the past several years, Good’s bill specifically targets the Tehran-Beijing axis, requiring the United States to cease all negotiations with Iran until it "terminates strategic security and military partnerships with China," according to the bill and a fact sheet being circulated by the lawmaker’s office. It also takes the unprecedented step of tying future U.S.-led diplomatic talks with Iran to a requirement that China end its genocide against the Uyghur ethnic minority.

Prior to restarting nuclear negotiations with Iran, the Biden administration would have to certify to Congress that China’s genocide has ended, its alliance with Iran has been severed, and that Tehran has ceased financial and military support for Hamas. The requirements imposed by the bill erect a massive hurdle for any administration to vault if it wants to engage in diplomacy with Iran, according to Good, who said that in light of recent events in the region, "the U.S. should be holding the CCP accountable and standing up to Iran."

"I unequivocally stand with Israel and its right to defend itself. While President Biden bows to the whims of authoritarian regimes in China and Iran, he is trying to force Israel to surrender to Iran-backed Hamas terrorists—the U.S. should be holding the CCP accountable and standing up to Iran," Good told the Free Beacon.

The legislation includes provisions that target Iran’s nuclear program, which has grown in sophistication as the world shifts its focus to Hamas’s war against Israel. In the past several months, Iran has increased its enrichment of uranium, the key component in an atomic bomb, and stockpiled highly enriched nuclear fuel. Watchdog groups estimate that Iran could produce its first bomb within one week and a total of six within a month.

Good’s bill seeks to constrain Iran’s nuclear program by mandating that diplomatic talks can only be held once Tehran "has verified the destruction of all chemical weapons, materials, and infrastructure." If Iran is to cash in on the sanctions relief offered under the prospect of a revamped nuclear deal, it would first have to dismantle the most contested portions of its arsenal.

Any new nuclear agreement would also need to be reviewed by Congress and ratified by a two-thirds vote in the Senate, making implementation of a future deal difficult to obtain in the upper chamber.

The provisions in the bill related to China are the most likely to garner GOP backing in both chambers given mounting concern about Beijing’s support for Iran and its other top ally, Russia.

Beijing has become a top importer of heavily sanctioned Iranian crude oil, providing the hardline regime with billions in cash that it used to support terror proxy groups across the region. Illicit Iranian oil sales have brought in around $90 billion in total since the Biden administration took office.

China, Iran, and Russia held joint war drills as recently as March.

Good said the provisions included in his legislation will address Tehran's escalating violence and "prevent the Biden Administration from entering another failed nuclear agreement."