On Saturday, the House of Representatives voted to approve the US-India nuclear deal by a vote of 298-117. The Bush administration pushed this deal aggressively to Congress, ignoring proliferation concerns in the process. The 2006 Hyde Act passed by Congress had important restrictions on the deal, such as terminating the agreement if India tests nuclear weapons. But the deal that the House passed this weekend does not include these critical restrictions, and undermines years of work by the global community to discourage nuclear proliferation.
It’s unclear at this point when the Senate will vote on the deal, but it could be soon. The Senate is working to adjourn for the year and return to campaigning by the end of the week. We’re urging people to contact their senators since they can help prevent a vote on this dangerous deal. Should the Senate also pass the India nuclear deal, it will become harder for the US to persuade other countries to forgo nuclear weapons development.
Contact your senators by calling the Capitol Hill Switchboard: (202) 224 – 3121
Several representatives we have worked with spoke out against the deal, including Reps. Tauscher, Woolsey, Lee, and Schiff. Here’s what they had to say:
Ellen Tauscher: This bill flies in the face of decades of American leadership to contain the spread of weapons of mass destruction. This deal will help India expand its nuclear weapons program. For every pound of uranium that India is allowed to import for its power reactors, this deal frees up a pound of uranium for its bomb program.
Lynn Woolsey: This agreement says that India, but no other country, can live outside the international nuclear control system. It sets a frightening precedent. If a country is unhappy about the rules on nuclear possession, it can simply go around them breaking them.
And what does it matter if India ignores international agreements? Any sanctions? Any punishment? No. Just a lucrative deal with the United States of America.
Adam Schiff: The next time India has a new government, which could be as early as winter, it may withdraw from the agreement, and the net result of all of this negotiation will allow foreign companies to sell nuclear technology to India. No non-proliferation goals would be accomplished, no new business would be generated for American companies, and no new relationship with India would be achieved.
You can read quotes from more representatives speaking on the deal here.