WASHINGTON — The Senate voted on Thursday to extend American sanctions against Iran for a decade, sending to President Obama a measure that supporters said would help ensure that the United States could fully respond if Iran were to violate its obligations under the nuclear agreement.
Iranian officials, rankled that the legislation to extend sanctions was being considered — the House overwhelmingly passed it last month — have threatened to respond if the United States goes through with the renewal.
The 99-to-0 vote Thursday showed the desire of lawmakers to maintain a tough posture toward Iran amid uncertainty over the future of the nuclear agreement, which President-elect Donald J. Trump railed against during his campaign.
“Given Iran’s continued pattern of aggression and the country’s persistent efforts to expand its sphere of influence across the region, preserving these sanctions is critical,” the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, said on Thursday. He said he expected the Trump administration and the new Congress to “undertake a total review of our overall Iran policy.”
Asked on Wednesday if the president would veto the extension of sanctions, the White House press secretary, Josh Earnest, said that the administration would review it. “The administration continues to retain substantial authorities that can be used to impose financial sanctions on the Iranian regime,” he said.
Mr. Earnest suggested, however, that the president could still sign the legislation. “There are plenty of times where the president has signed into law bills that Congress has passed that we’re not sure are entirely necessary,” he said.
The future of the nuclear agreement with Iran is one of the major looming foreign policy questions facing the Trump administration. During the campaign. Mr. Trump pledged to dismantle the agreement deal, which he described as “the stupidest deal of all time” in the last presidential debate.
Some hope that Mr. Trump will change course. In an interview published Wednesday, the departing director of the C.I.A., John O. Brennan, said that ending the nuclear agreement would be “disastrous” and “the height of folly.”