State Senator Eric Schmitt (R-Glendale) and former Missouri Treasurer Sarah Steelman have joined a national group, called Defund Iran, that says it wants to keep state pension funding from going to individuals, businesses and governments funding terrorism. Steelman said the President’s nuclear deal with Iran strips Missouri of that right.
Senator Schmitt said the group is considering what direction to go.
“My preference would be probably for a referendum, but we’ll kind of see how it goes. We’ll leave all options open at this point,” said Schmitt. “I mean, it’s September and we have a long way to go between now and May of 2016. I intend to leave all of our options open. The most important thing to me is that the people get to weigh in on this.”
Senator Joseph Keaveny (D-St. Louis) questioned whether citizens of state sponsors of terrorism would be abandoned.
“Does this mean that we’re not going to provide humanitarian aid to some of the citizens being exploited by those countries? I’m not sure if we want to be in a position where we’re going to cut off things that we think are very important.”
He believes the group’s efforts are largely political.
“Obviously no one’s going to be in favor of putting tax money to sponsor terrorism. That’s pretty much a no brainer. That’s probably why they decided to put it on the November ballot,” said Keaveny.
Schmitt said national security isn’t a partisan issue.
A vote by Congress is expected this week on the President’s agreement with Iran. It appears that the President has enough votes to avoid a veto.