Hill Supports Iranian Leadership Asset Transparency Act

For more information, contact: Mike Siegel, (202) 225-2506

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Washington, DC, September 21, 2016 | comments

Today, Congressman French Hill (AR-02) went to the House Floor to speak in favor of H.R. 5461, the Iranian Leadership Asset Transparency Act, introduced by Congressman Bruce Poliquin (ME-02). The bill would require the Secretary of the Department of Treasury to publically maintain a list estimating the “funds and assets” of senior Iranian political and military leaders, along with a description of how they acquired the assets and how those assets are employed.

The bill passed the House by a vote of 282-143. During debate on the House Floor, Congressman Hill, an original cosponsor of the bill, stated:

“Mr. Poliquin’s approach is simply a common-sense thing to do when you consider that this administration, six years ago, turned its back on the Iranian people when they were trying to protest their notorious regime and take to the streets. But then, instead of aiding those citizens, they turned their back on the people of Iran to negotiate with the ayatollahs on, what I believe to be, an ill-conceived, poorly designed nuclear deal.

“My friend Mr. Himes from Connecticut makes the point of asset transparency and argues that this bill today would not in fact help advance the transparency of the Qods Force or the aggregation of these assets in the hands of these 80 individuals. But, if the Administration was serious about transparency, they would not give the largest state sponsor of terrorism $1.7 billion in Swiss Francs and Euros, to become an untraceable honey pot for purchase of ballistic missile components, or fund terrorism in the West Bank, or back Assad in Syria.

“Representative Price from North Carolina says this act actually strengthens the hardliners, and I would argue that if this is strengthening the hardliners, then what did the JCPOA accomplish when we report a 50 percent increase in incursions from the Iranian military in our air and sea activities in the Persian Gulf?

“The hardliners in Iran call the payment of $1.7 billion a ransom, not the people of the United States, and they have taken two more additional hostages as a result of this administration’s process. And if we are not strengthening the hardliners, then why is Iran doubling down on acquiring ballistic missile technology and backing the absolute destruction of Syria?

“Mr. Chairman, this is a commonsense measure that will let the people of Iran see what the 80 powerful individuals are doing with the billions that have been freed up and come back to the country of Iran. Street paving is not going on, Mr. Chairman; what is going on is the expansion of terrorism and billions in untraceable money backing a regime that our own State Department and Treasury says is undiminished in their sponsor of terrorism worldwide.”

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