A bill to strengthen U.S. sanctions on North Korea is expected to get a House vote as soon as next week, and it will receive broad bipartisan support, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi told reporters Thursday. “It has been in the works for a while,” the California Democrat said, explaining that the bill is timely but not a direct response to North Korea bragging this week about a successful hydrogen bomb test.
Pelosi said the initial analysis shows North Korea overstated the nature of the test, but that it's still a matter of great concern and a violation of longstanding United Nations Security Council resolutions.
The House bill is "ready to go" and could receive a vote the week of Jan. 11, Pelosi said. Because the bill has strong bipartisan support, she said it may be voted under an expedited procedure known as suspension of the rules, which requires a two-thirds majority for passage.
Speaker Paul D. Ryan confirmed the House will vote on North Korea sanctions, and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said in a statement that the new sanctions would keep North Korea from gaining access to hard currency, as well as take steps to "block and seize assets related to nuclear proliferation, illicit activities, and human rights violations."
McCarthy and Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee Ed Royce, R-Calif., said the House will also consider legislation on Iran next week. That bill would prevent the administration from lifting sanctions on individuals or banks until determining that they "do not support terror, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, Iran’s ballistic missile program, or its conventional weapons program."
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