US President Barack Obama has secured enough Senate votes to protect the Iran nuclear deal in Congress.
Democrat Barbara Mikulski became the 34th Senator to back the deal.
Congress could still oppose the pact when it votes later this month but Obama is confident of enough votes to override a so-called ‘resolution of disapproval’ avoiding the need to use his veto.
US Secretary of State State John Kerry condemned sustained Republican opposition:
“It is hard to conceive of a quicker, or more self-destructive blow to our nation’s credibility and leadership, not only with respect to this one issue, but I’m telling you across the board, economically, politically, militarily and even morally. We would pay an immeasurable price.”
The deal was signed in July between six world powers and Iran. However opponents say it gives Tehran too much sanctions relief in exchanged for an insufficient regime for inspecting Iran’s nuclear facilities.
They also claim a $50bn windfall will be used by Iran to finance militant groups which might threatened US allies.