A resolution backing a secular, democratic and non-nuclear Iran now has majority bipartisan support in the House of Representatives, activists and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle announced on Thursday.
In a press conference, representatives announced that 222 members of the 435-member House are now signed onto H.Res 100, which was introduced by Rep. Tom McClintock, R-Calif., earlier this year and expresses Congress’ support of a democratic, secular and non-nuclear republic. There are 75 Democrats signed onto the resolution.
McClintock said that Democrats and Republicans “now stand side-by-side with the people of Iran who struggle to rid themselves of the theocratic thugs who have oppressed them for far too long.”
“I think everyone senses that the day of Iran’s liberation is approaching, and its deliverance will be at the hands of the Iranian people and their friends and supporters around the world,” he said.
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The country is currently governed by a theocratic regime in Tehran, which has held power since 1979 and curbed human rights, persecuted and killed government opponents, and pursued a nuclear weapon for years.
Iranian activists who call for a non-nuclear, democratic and secular government to replace the regime have worked for decades to attract support for their cause in Washington, D.C. The most recent resolution has picked up majority support in a matter of weeks — a rarity in what is often a partisan political environment in the capital. The press conference on Thursday was hosted by the Organization of Iranian-American Communities.
Rep. Randy Weber, R-Texas, highlighted that the U.S. government failed to fully support the 2009 uprising by activists against the regime.
“America should have been on board then, but I’ll tell you this, we are on board now and that’s what matters,” he said.
The support for a more muscular stance was echoed by many lawmakers on the panel.
“We will fight until Iran is free and free for everyone, for the women of Iran, for the children of Iran and for the men and families of Iran,” Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Calif., said.
Rep. Brad Sherman, D-Calif., paid tribute to the activists and noted the bipartisan nature of the support.
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“Brad Sherman to Tom McClintock is a wide range of members,” he said, later adding that it may be the one issue where the two lawmakers are on the same side.
The resolution expresses “support for the Iranian people’s desire for a democratic, secular, and nonnuclear Republic of Iran, and condemning violations of human rights and state-sponsored terrorism by the Iranian Government.”
It notes the protests in 2017, 2019 and 2022 by activists against the regime, particularly highlighting protests that broke out after the death of Mahsa Amini, who had been arrested by the morality police for not covering her head.
The resolution accuses the regime of suppressing minorities, killing and arresting tens of thousands of protesters and other “egregious” human rights violations. It condemns past Iranian terror acts, including a plot against a 2018 gathering of activists in Paris.
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The text calls on U.S. agencies to work with European allies to prevent the malign activities of the Iranian regime’s diplomatic missions, with the goal of closing them down and expelling its agents and condemning the killing of protesters by the regime.
Maryam Rajavi, president-elect of the National Council of Resistance of Iran, called the majority support “the decisive response of the U.S. House of Representatives to the Iranian regime and the massive disinformation campaign to hinder your support for the Iranian Resistance and people’s uprising.”
The resolution’s growing support comes as the fate of the Iran nuclear deal is still in the air. The U.S., under the Trump administration, pulled out of the 2015 accord, arguing it did not do enough to stop Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
The Biden administration has sought to re-enter the accord and talks have been underway, but have since stalled due to what U.S. officials have blamed on demands by the regime. A top U.S. diplomatic said in October thew U.S. will not “waste time” on trying to revive the talks.
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