President Trump plans to announce next week that he will “decertify” the international nuclear deal with Iran, saying it is not in the national interest of the United States and kicking the issue to a reluctant Congress, people briefed on an emerging White House strategy for Iran said Thursday.
The move would mark the first step in a process that could eventually result in the resumption of U.S. sanctions against Iran, which would blow up a deal limiting Iran’s nuclear activities that the country reached in 2015 with the U.S. and five other nations.
Trump is expected to deliver a speech, tentatively scheduled for Oct. 12, laying out a larger strategy for confronting the nation it blames for terrorism and instability throughout the Middle East.
Under what is described as a tougher and more comprehensive approach, Trump would open the door to modifying the landmark 2015 agreement he has repeatedly bashed as a raw deal for the United States. But for now he would hold off on recommending that Congress reimpose sanctions on Iran that would abrogate the agreement, said four people familiar with aspects of the president’s thinking.
Everyone agrees that Iran is complying with the agreement, and it has successfully kept them from moving forward with a nuclear weapons program. So destroying the agreement seems like a great idea.
* Mike DeBonis, Elise Viebeck and Ed O’Keefe report on a truly unexpected development in the gun debate:
The National Rifle Association has joined an effort to restrict a device that was used to accelerate gunfire in the Las Vegas massacre, after the White House and top Republicans signaled a willingness to debate the issue in response the tragedy.
“In Las Vegas, reports indicate that certain devices were used to modify the firearms involved. . . . The NRA believes that devices designed to allow semi-automatic rifles to function like fully-automatic rifles should be subject to additional regulations,” the NRA’s executive vice president and chief executive, Wayne LaPierre, said in a joint statement with Chris W. Cox, executive director of the NRA Institute for Legislative Action.
The statement from the NRA — its first since Sunday’s shooting — was expected to galvanize the effort to further regulate bump fire stocks, or bump stocks.
House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.), House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) said Thursday that lawmakers will consider further rules for the devices, which allow legal semiautomatic rifles to fire as rapidly as more heavily restricted automatic weapons.
I am truly shocked at this, since the NRA’s position on virtually every restriction has been that it’s just the first step to the government breaking down your door and taking your guns.
* Josh Dawsey, Andrew Restuccia, and Matthew Nussbaum report that the White House is preparing to demand draconian limits on legal immigration in exchange for agreeing to a fix for the “dreamers.”
* The Pew Research Center reports that partisan gaps over fundamental values have grown wider than ever in the first year of the Trump administration.
* E.J. Dionne, Norm Ornstein, and Thomas Mann have a good piece explaining how the deep structural problems with our democracy are the real reason we’re getting no action on guns.
* Bright Line Watch finds offers its latest survey results demonstrating what political scientists think of the health of our democracy. The news isn’t terrible, but it’s not that great, either.
* Isaac Shapiro and Danilo Trisi report that child poverty sank to a record low in 2016, particularly due to government antipoverty programs.
* Kurt Andersen examines the fantasies that feed our gun culture.
* And Keri Geiger asks whether it’s a problem that Donald Trump, Jr. is giving paid speeches. Look, nobody denies that he’s a brilliant man full of penetrating insights, and people just want to hear what he has to say.