Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenTop union offers backing for Ellison in DNC race John Kerry to teach at Yale on global issues Ellison needles Perez for 'unverifiable' claim of DNC support MORE briefed a dozen Democratic senators on Wednesday on the negotiations with Iran over its nuclear weapons program.
The meeting came a day after President Obama pled with chairmen and ranking members from the intelligence, defense, and banking committees to hold off on new sanctions while negotiations continued.
"The Vice President underscored that the relief we would provide Iran as part of the first step would be modest and temporary compared to the substantial, continuing impact of our sanctions, which would be vigorously enforced throughout the first step," the White House said in a statement.
Attendees included Sens. Richard BlumenthalRichard BlumenthalSenate Dems ask DHS inspector general for probe of Trump’s business arrangement If Gorsuch pick leads to 'crisis,' Dems should look in mirror first Senate Dems move to nix Trump's deportation order MORE (Conn.), Cory Booker (N.J.), Benjamin Cardin (Md.), Thomas Carper (Del.), Robert CaseyBob CaseyHow many GOP senators will stand up to megadonor DeVos? Just 2. Cruz: Supreme Court 'likely' to uphold Trump order Schumer: Trump should see 'handwriting on the wall,' drop order MORE (Pa.), Al FrankenAl FrankenAT&T, Time Warner defend deal The Hill's 12:30 Report FCC chair responds to Franken's net neutrality concerns MORE (Minn.), Tim KaineTim KaineMattis on rise in Trump administration Senate advances Trump's Commerce pick Steve Mnuchin, foreclosure king, now runs your US Treasury MORE (Va.), Joe ManchinJoe ManchinPruitt sworn in as EPA chief EPA breaks Twitter silence to congratulate new head Dem senator: I may face 2018 primary from Tea Party-esque progressives MORE (W.Va.), Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleySenate advances Trump's Commerce pick Senate confirms Pruitt to lead EPA Democrats want Pruitt vote delayed over emails MORE (Ore.), Chris MurphyChris MurphySenators eye new sanctions against Iran For Trump and Russia, the fall of Michael Flynn is only the beginning Overnight Finance: Trump's Labor pick withdraws | Ryan tries to save tax plan | Trump pushes tax reform with retailers MORE (D-Conn.), Jeanne Shaheen Jeanne ShaheenMattis on rise in Trump administration Scott Brown being considered for ambassador to New Zealand: report Senate advances Trump's Commerce pick MORE (N.H.), and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenAT&T, Time Warner defend deal Scott Brown being considered for ambassador to New Zealand: report Warren: Trump's EPA pick the 'attorney general for Exxon' MORE (Mass.).
During a panel hosted by the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday, Obama said he had told lawmakers and Israel that it was important to test whether a diplomatic solution was possible.
"Let's test the proposition over the next six months we can resolve this in a diplomatic fashion while maintaining the essential sanctions architecture," Obama said.
The president said that under the proposed short-term deal, the Iranians would halt their nuclear weapons program, roll back certain elements, and subject themselves to "vigorous inspections."
Obama said, the U.S. was offering a "very modest amount of relief that is entirely subject to reinstatement if in fact they violated any part of this earlier agreement."