(JTA) – U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, the U.S. Senate majority leader, said the U.S. Congress would likely not muster the two-thirds majority needed to reject the accord over Iran’s nuclear program.
To reject the agreement, a majority of Congress would need to vote against it, which is likely, and then garner a two-thirds majority to overcome U.S. President Barack Obama’s promised veto. To reach two-thirds, Republican majorities in the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate would need a handful of Democratic votes, which McConnell, R-Ky., said was unlikely.
“He can win by getting one-third plus one of either house,” McConnell said to a group in Kentucky, referring to Obama, according to the Associated Press. “So he’s still got a great likelihood of success.”
McConnell expects every Republican senator to oppose the deal. Only one Democrat, Sen. Charles Schumer of New York, has committed to voting against it. Schumer is in line to lead Senate Democrats in 2017.
To sustain his veto, and the agreement, Obama would need 34 Senate Democrats to vote in favour of the deal. Twenty have said they will do so.