President Trump announced Tuesday that the United States will withdraw from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal on May 12, citing the ineffectiveness of the agreement in stopping development of a nuclear weapon and announcing tough new economic sanctions to put the pressure back on the Iranian government.
In 2015, President Obama, through then-Secretary of State John Kerry, signed on to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or JCPOA, without consulting Congress. The stated conclusion of the deal was that the U.S. and five key allies would ease sanctions and return frozen Iranian assets in exchange for Iran allowing international inspections at its admitted nuclear sites.
By labeling the plan an executive agreement rather than a treaty, Obama and Kerry were able to bypass Congress. But they also set the stage for a future president reversing the policy unilaterally.
Obama administration veterans, the media and America’s partners in the agreement