So-called ‘side deals’ have become a big problem for the White House in its efforts to sell skeptical lawmakers on the Iran nuclear agreement.
The White House is characterizing the deals as “standard” yet confidential. But Republicans say the administration is required to submit them under a law passed by Congress that gives lawmakers authority to review the deal.
White House officials says that despite the confidentiality of the understandings that have been reached, they also “know their contents,” and would be happy to share them with all members of Congress in closed settings. They have not yet done so, however.
At the same time, cabinet officials admitted this week that they’ve only been briefed on the side-deals, rather than having examined the wording — and that they only know of one administration official who’s actually seen the agreements. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) described that state of affairs as “absolutely astounding.”