A mainstream, Democratic Party-aligned foreign policy think tank is knocking Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., for voting against new sanctions on Iran in 2017 — though the think tank itself and many members of its board oppose new Iran sanctions.
Sanders has been an outspoken supporter of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and said at the time that he voted against the measure in order to preserve the deal. Sanctions, he argued, would have jeopardized the landmark agreement. But the sanctions were part of a package that also imposed restrictions on Russia and North Korea, which is why the think tank, Foreign Policy for America, supported the package.
Foreign Policy for America’s knock came in a score card that rated politicians on their votes in Congress. The group, also known as FP4A, released its new score card at the end of April, ranking members of Congress from the 115th session on a variety of foreign policy issues. The relatively new advocacy group gives Sanders a positive score in all but two of 13 categories — one of which was the bill that sanctioned Iran and Russia.
Among the members of the Foreign Policy for America’s boards are foreign policy experts who were instrumental in fighting to make the Iran deal happen. Some of those figures have expressed concerns over the choice to penalize Sanders for taking the position he did.
Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, former Secretary of State Colin Powell’s chief of staff and a Foreign Policy for America advisory board member said the scoring of the vote that included the Iran sanctions, along with a few other disagreements, had caused him to reconsider his involvement with Foreign Policy for America.
Here is a link to FP4A. Here is a link to the group's board of directors and advisory board.
The liberal think tank Center for American Progress (CAP) has also been tussling with Sanders.