Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenHuckabee to Biden: Trump can land a 'face kick' The Trail 2016: Election night cliffhanger Armani, Batali among guests at White House state dinner 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 BlumenthalOvernight Healthcare: Biden hints at new money for cancer research | Trump details opioid plan | Dem urges feds to reject EpiPen settlement Dem calls on DOJ to reject EpiPen settlement Why Yahoo's breach could turn the SEC into a cybersecurity tiger MORE (Conn.), Cory Booker (N.J.), Benjamin Cardin (Md.), Thomas Carper (Del.), Robert CaseyBob CaseyGreat Lakes senators seek boost for maritime system Help individuals with disabilities achieve the American Dream with the ABLE to Work Act A dozen senators call for crackdown on Chinese steel MORE (Pa.), Al FrankenAl FrankenGretchen Carlson to testify before Congress Great Lakes senators seek boost for maritime system Court ruling could be game changer for Dems in Nevada MORE (Minn.), Tim KaineTim KaineClinton: Trump's election talk poses 'threat to our democracy' Miley Cyrus knocks on doors for Clinton Kaine: Clinton 'looks damn presidential' MORE (Va.), Joe ManchinJoe ManchinTrump questions hound endangered Republican Dems to McConnell: Pass 'clean' extension of Iran sanctions Convicted ex-coal boss says he’s a ‘political prisoner’ MORE (W.Va.), Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleyOvernight Healthcare: Top ObamaCare lobbyists reject 'public option' push | Groups sound alarm over Medicare premium hike Top ObamaCare lobbyists reject 'public option' push Liberal groups urge Schumer to reject Bayh for Banking gavel MORE (Ore.), Chris MurphyChris MurphyPodesta floated Bill Gates, Bloomberg as possible Clinton VPs Dem senator calls for end of Saudi support in Yemen after funeral bombing Dems to McConnell: Pass 'clean' extension of Iran sanctions MORE (D-Conn.), Jeanne Shaheen Jeanne ShaheenPodesta floated Bill Gates, Bloomberg as possible Clinton VPs Obama signs 'bill of rights' for rape survivors into law Four military options for Obama in Syria MORE (N.H.), and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenSchilling lashes out: 'I'm apparently an anti-Semite' for asking questions Curt Schilling to Jake Tapper: How can Jews be Democrats? Small donors aren’t revolutionizing Congress. At least not yet. 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."