On July 25, the House of Representatives passed legislation that would impose additional sanctions on Iran, North Korea and Russia. The bill would increase sanctions on those involved in Iran’s human rights abuses, its support for terrorism, as well as its ballistic missile program. For Russia, the bill would ensure that existing economic sanctions remain as long as Russian aggression continues by empowering Congress to review and disapprove any sanctions relief that the president may seek. The bill also includes the text of H.R. 1644, The Korean Interdiction and Modernization of Sanctions Act, which was passed by the House in May by a vote of 419-1, and seeks to expand sanctions targeting North Korea’s nuclear weapons program.
As noted in a previous post, the Senate has also passed legislation (S. 722) to implement additional sanctions on Iran and Russia; the Senate bill does not contain provisions on North Korea sanctions. Because different bills were passed in each chamber and the House bill included additional sanctions against North Korea, it is expected that the Senate will take up consideration of H.R. 3364 for any final vote. Interestingly, given President Trump’s perceived ambivalence on the Ukraine-related Russia sanctions, the votes for passage by each chamber – 419 to 3 in the House and 98-2 in the Senate – likely make any passage of a final bill veto-proof.