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New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, the No. 3 Senate Democrat and next-in-line party leader, said late Thursday that he is breaking with President Barack Obama and will oppose the Iran nuclear deal.
“After deep study, careful thought and considerable soul-searching, I have decided I must oppose the agreement and will vote yes on a motion of disapproval,” Schumer said in a statement weeks before he will cast a vote.
Schumer is the first Senate Democrat to step forward to oppose the deal. His announcement came just hours after two other Senate Democrats — New York’s Kirsten Gillibrand and New Hampshire’s Jeanne Shaheen — announced their support for the international accord.
The deal, struck last month with Tehran and Western powers, would curb Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for billions of dollars in relief from crippling sanctions.