Treaty to Trim U.S. and Russian Nuclear Stockpiles Heads to the Senate Floor – CQ Homeland Security

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday approved a new strategic nuclear arms control treaty with Russia, moving one of the administration’s top foreign policy priorities to the Senate floor.

By a 14-4 vote, the panel approved the New START accord (Treaty Doc 111-5), which would restrict each country to a maximum of 1,550 deployed nuclear warheads — a cut of about 30 percent from a limit set in 2002.

The treaty now must win the support of at least 67 lawmakers — a two-thirds vote — for ratification. The White House has set a goal of getting the pact ratified by year’s end.

“Today, I urge the full Senate to move forward quickly with a vote to approve this treaty,” President Obama said in a statement after the committee vote. “I encourage members on both sides of the aisle to give this agreement the fair hearing and bipartisan support that it deserves and that has been given to past agreements of its kind.”

Voting with the majority were Republicans Richard G. Lugar of Indiana, Bob Corker of Tennessee and Johnny Isakson of Georgia.