House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., said this week that while Congress does not oppose the Obama administration's new diplomatic outreach to Iran, the United States needed to continue applying pressure on Tehran over its controversial nuclear program.
"Iran needs to immediately end its systematic noncompliance with the repeated demands of the United Nations," said Cantor. "We all want negotiations to succeed, but time is clearly running out."
The White House has been urging Congress to allow more time for its diplomatic efforts to produce results, but The Wall Street Journal said Saturday that various lawmakers from both parties wanted the sanctions bill to come to a vote by the end of next week.
The newspaper said the new sanctions would tighten up the sanctions on Iranian oil exports and international finances. Iran has called for a rolling back of the sanctions as part of a new round of diplomatic efforts to defuse the nagging uranium enrichment issue.
If the sanctions pass in the House in the coming days, the ball would then be in the Senate's court. The Journal said the Senate had no firm timetable for new legislation on Iranian sanctions.