Dozens of Democrats are calling on President Biden to get tougher on Iran - as divisions open up in the party on how to respond to Hamas' brutal terrorist attack on Israel.
"Iran must be held fully accountable for its continued role in funding Hamas and Islamic terror," a group of over 60 Democrats wrote in a bipartisan letter.
"We urge the Administration to take all necessary steps to cut off Iranian funding sources."
Biden has continued the controversial policy of detente with Iran that was engineered by his former boss Barack Obama, who coordinated the Iran nuclear deal.
Republicans have accused Biden of enabling Hamas' attack on Israel by unfreezing $6 billion in Iranian assets, but the administration has denied that Iran had any direct involvement in the attack. However, many in his party clearly disagree.
The 63 Democrats urged Biden to ratchet up sanctions on Iran and restrict its oil trade with China.
They also urged Biden to renew sanctions on Iran's missiles ahead of the Wednesday expiration of U.N. restrictions. The administration followed through and renewed the restrictions.
The letter was organized by Reps. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), Don Bacon (R-NE), Jared Moskowitz (D-FL), and Claudia Tenney (R-NY).
The lawmakers thanked Biden for his "unwavering support for the State of Israel and commitment to its security and stability," noting his decision to move aircraft carriers to the eastern Mediterranean.
While centrist Democrats are pressuring Biden to get tougher, Democrats to his left are tugging Biden in the other direction.
The 63 Democrats called out progressives making "premature" calls for a cease-fire between Israel and Gaza.
"We are already beginning to see calls in some circles for de-escalation. Premature de-escalation would be a victory for the terrorists, and allow them to continue to threaten Israeli civilians with future attacks."
Biden visited Israel Wednesday in a show of support for the Jewish state. He has rejected calls for a cease-fire coming from his left, while urging Israel to be cautious about harming Palestinian civilians in its response to the deadliest attack on Jews since the Holocaust.
Rashida Tlaib, the only Palestinian in Congress (Mi.), singled out Biden after a deadly strike on a hospital in Gaza on Tuesday. Biden has joined Israel in blaming the tragedy on Hamas.
Israel just bombed the Baptist Hospital killing 500 Palestinians (doctors, children, patients) just like that. @POTUS this is what happens when you refuse to facilitate a ceasefire & help de-escalate.
Your war and destruction only approach has opened my eyes and many… https://t.co/mZYoifT7bj
— Rashida Tlaib (@RashidaTlaib) October 17, 2023