Senators work for bipartisan legislation on Iranian sanctions

More than a dozen senators said on Thursday that they would work to reconcile proposals and pass bipartisan legislation for Iranian sanctions as soon as possible.

"A nuclear weapons capable Iran presents a grave threat to the national security of the United States and its allies and we are committed to preventing Iran from acquiring this capability," the senators said.

The bipartisan group included Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Robert Casey (D-Pa.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Susan Collins (R-Maine.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) and Bob Corker (R-Tenn.)

During the weekend, an agreement between Iran and the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany was reached to temporarily put a hold on Tehran's nuclear program for six months and allow international monitoring. In exchange for the delay, Iran received relief from economic sanctions and President Barack Obama said new penalties would not be imposed for six months, according to Associated Press.

"The bigger problem, however, is that the 'comprehensive' agreement envisioned in this accord would have an expiration date, beyond which Iran would be allowed to retain a large-scale domestic enrichment program," McCain said.

McCain said the situation "would be reminiscent of our experience over two decades with North Korea," and that it is essential to keep pressure on Iran to end its goal of nuclear weapons capability.