No Iran Deal Tonight Empowers Congress

World powers and Iran are reportedly close to reaching a deal to curb the country’s nuclear program by midnight. If a deal is not reached by midnight, the U.S. Congress will get an extra 30 days to review and possibly scuttle it. Negotiators have set a self-imposed deadline of Friday, July 10. U.S. law holds that if negotiators submit the text of the deal to Congress by 11:59 p.m. ET today, the House and Senate will have 30 days to scrutinize the deal while U.S.-led sanctions remain in place. If the deal is submitted after 12:01 a.m. Friday, Congress will get an additional 30 days to review—and possibly scuttle—a deal. The Obama administration has incentives to avoid the longer period for review, during which time the Republican-led House and Senate could rally opposition to the deal.

— Tim Mak

Correction, 7/9/15, 1:18 PM: A previous version of this article referred to Vienna, Switzerland. Vienna, of course, is in Austria.