Washington (CNN)A group of conservative House Republicans is pressuring the party's leadership to allow debate on changes to the Iran nuclear bill that's been approved by the Senate, a development that could jeopardize a bipartisan deal to give Congress a say in a potential agreement.
House conservatives want changes to Iran bill
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The clamor comes after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell rebuffed changes by some fellow Senate Republicans. The lack of a more robust debate in the Senate disappointed many party colleagues in the House, according to multiple House GOP sources.
"For some of us, it really is about trying to make it a stronger bill. I have serious doubts that this particular piece of legislation will increase congressional oversight," North Carolina Republican Rep. Mark Meadows told CNN on Friday.
Meadows, who is a member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, said that talks about what potential changes could be made began in the last couple of days among "dozens" of House Republicans. Several options are being discussed informally about ways to amend the bill, and members expect to finalize a plan soon to discuss with top House leaders early next week. If the bloc comes together on a plan they could force House Speaker John Boehner to allow a broader debate on the bill, and if changes are made they could draw a presidential veto threat.
Boehner's office declined to comment Friday on the next steps for the Iran bill. House Republican leadership aides say they are still determining the timing of a House vote on the bill, but it could come as soon as the end of next week.
Politico first reported on the discussions among House conservatives.
The current Iran legislation allows Congress to pass a resolution of disapproval if it opposes the final nuclear deal that the Obama administration negotiates with the longtime U.S. foe. But Meadows says one idea he and others have discussed is to specify that that resolution not be subject to a filibuster in the Senate.
Meadows also suggested that an amendment be added to require that any breach by Iran be required to be reported to Congress, and that the legislation make it clear that the stipulation apply to any sort of violation, not just one the administration deemed to be significant. Another idea is certify that when sanctions are lifted, Iran cannot use any money to support terrorism or terrorist groups.
Other conservatives are also interested in potentially offering an amendment championed in the Senate by Florida Republican Marco Rubio that would make any nuclear deal with Iran contingent on the country recognizing Israel's right to exist.
Meadows told CNN his goal was to come up with changes that could pass the House and also be approved if the House sent it back to the Senate.
"The desire is to make it better, versus making it a messaging amendment or messaging bill," Meadows told CNN.