Bipartisan support builds for next Congress to move on Iran sanctions legislation


The next Congress will move to reassert its prerogatives in helping to shape a nuclear deal with Iran, according to leading figures from both parties and in both chambers. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), the incoming Majority Whip, tersely tweeted late on Monday that the "bipartisan Congress will have more to say on [Iran negotiations] come January." The point was in line with a harsh statement published earlier by House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), in which he called on lawmakers to work toward "holding [the Iranian] regime accountable for the threat it poses to the region and our allies." The Wall Street Journal on Monday described the dynamic as crossing party lines, with "Democrats and Republicans express[ing] a mix of concern and frustration that the talks between Iranian officials and six world powers were again being extended." Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) had previously issued a statement emphasizing the importance of coupling further diplomacy with "economic pressure," and had committing to pursuing legislative action in the Senate toward that end. Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA) was more blunt, stating that Congress "should work to pass tough sanctions now, and these sanctions should go into effect immediately... [i]t's clear now we need strong sanctions to achieve a good deal." The declarations emerged after the P5+1 global powers and Iran jointly announced on Monday that they would extend the Joint Plan of Action (JPOA) interim agreement - which has provided the Iranians with sufficient economic relief to begin stabilizing their economy - for another 7 months. Administration officials had a year ago assured Congress that the White House would cooperate in crafting new economic measures against Iran if a deal had not been reached by the summer. Last November State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki told reporters "if the Iranians don’t get to a 'yes' at the end of six months, we can put in place more sanctions." A few weeks later White House spokesman Jay Carney told journalists that "if Iran fails to reach agreement with the P5-plus-1 on the more comprehensive agreement over the course of six months, we are very confident that we can work with Congress to very quickly pass new, effective sanctions against Iran."

3D print maker, 3D Systems (3DS), has acquired the Israeli design software maker Cimatron for a reported $97 million to strengthen its position in the fast-growing 3D design and manufacturing space. Cimatron is a leading provider of integrated 3D CAD/CAM software products and solutions for manufacturing and its products are used by companies worldwide for their 3D production molds and tools in a wide variety of functional end-use manufacturing applications. The company is ranked among the top six CAD/CAM suppliers in every global region. “We believe that the perfect strategic fit between our businesses, combined with expanded capabilities in product development, channel coverage and marketing, could present sizeable synergies that together offer significant long-term customer benefits and shareholder value,” said Avi Reichental, President and CEO of 3DS. “We are delighted to combine our leading 3D CAD/CAM software products with 3DS’ expanding design and manufacturing digital thread,” said Danny Haran, CEO of Cimatron. “We have always been focused on providing comprehensive, cost-effective solutions that streamline manufacturing cycles and shorten product delivery time, and as part of 3DS we can substantially accelerate our progress and extend our reach and impact.” The companies expect the transaction to close in the first quarter of 2015. (via Israel21c)

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