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Senate to Consider New Sanctions on Russia

by Countable | 6.7.17

The Senate will consider legislation this week to put an additional layer of sanctions on Russia for the actions it’s taken in Ukraine, Syria and allegations it meddled in the 2016 election. On the Senate floor Wednesday Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that Russian sanctions are likely to be taken up and attached to a bill that hefts new sanctions on Iran. It’s still unclear exactly what the new round of sanctions will look like, but here are the three most popular bills party leaders have to choose from.

  • Sens. Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) are pushing an effort in the Banking Committee that would toughen existing sanctions that were signed through executive orders. They also seek to go after bad actors in Russia, including anyone who is trying to evade current sanctions, corrupt leaders, those giving weapons to the Syrian regime and anyone in Russia involved with cybercrimes against the U.S. They also want to extend existing sanctions to new sectors of Russia’s economy, including its mining, banking and railway industries.

  • Another proposal being discussed, The Countering Russian Hostilities Act of 2017, is being offered by Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Ben Cardin (D-MD). It would prohibit anyone involved in cybercrimes against the U.S. from obtaining a visa, while also freezing their assets. It would also extend sanctions to not just the bad actors themselves, but also to anyone inside or outside the Russian government who is found to have supported those involved in cyber intrusion. It also puts sanctions on Russia’s defense and intelligence industries.

  • The third most popular sanctions bill floating around the Senate is the Russia Sanctions Review Act, which is being spearheaded by Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Ben Cardin (D-MD). It would force President Trump to keep Congress informed if he plans to lift any sanctions imposed on Russia over its aggressive action in Ukraine or for interfering in the election. If Trump did want to lift any sanctions, the bill would give Congress 120 days to disapprove of the move and potentially block the president’s request.

The broader Iran sanctions bill is coming to the Senate floor this week, and will likely be wrapped up some time early next week. The Russian sanctions amendments are likely to be offered on Thursday, at the same time former FBI Director James Comey is slated to testify on whether President Trump tried to muzzle his investigation into whether members of his campaign, transition team and administration colluded with Russian officials.

Contact your U.S. Senators and let them know if they should support new Russian sanctions.

-- Matt Laslo

(Photo Credit: US Dept. of State)

Countable

Written by Countable

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(80)
  • Dave
    06/07/2017
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    Putting sanctions on Russia is not enough, we need to impeach the president also and get rid of his staff and family!

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  • JaredThePoet
    06/07/2017
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    All three of these suggested bills should merge and the senate vote on them as a whole. We must all work together to show our strength and resolve in the face of a country that believes it is okay to intrude on our democratic election process. If it is found that the president and his cabinet did collude with the Russians, perhaps harsher measures towards Russia should be implemented, and our President and his team impeached and removed from office. I believe that the fact that proof has surfaced that Russia did, at least, attempt to intrude in our election is enough grounds for sanctions and I also believe that any reasonable person would also make that determination in looking at that evidence.

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  • VSB
    06/07/2017
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    The NSA document that was leaked clearly demonstrates Russia's attempts to meddle in our election and Russia is not denying it. I am not sure what is "alleged" about the meddling. We need serious sanctions against Russia. Please support those sanctions, congressmen!

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  • Isabel
    06/07/2017
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    Russia should be punished severely. Putin is a thug he is involved in the genocide of Syria & their chemical war fate against their ppl . It is a disgrace that the us president never ever has anything bad to say about Russia. Why? We need to see his Taxes at least 30 years!

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  • Jeanne
    06/07/2017
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    Too little too late. This should have happened long ago. Russia is our enemy and the mess we have now is all Ronald Reagan's fault.

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  • Jim
    06/08/2017
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    Russia's meddling is a declaration of war . It's time to be tough on Russia.

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  • Aqil
    06/07/2017
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    Russia and Iran are the ones behind all terrorism in the Middle East and around the world along with Lebanon and Assad Syrian regime which are the puppets of these terrorist countries . Please do more to stop them .

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  • Chuck
    06/08/2017
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    Russia has been engaged in cyber war fare with our nation for quite sometime senate needs to lead since the president appears beholden to Putin.

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  • Ellen
    06/08/2017
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    More sanctions on Russia are needed. Please vote to strengthen sanctions. Russia is supporting those Countries opposing us and using private hackers to subvert our institutions.

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  • Catherine
    06/07/2017
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    ABSOLUTELY! Anything but santions proves treasonous is this point!

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  • Jeff
    06/07/2017
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    As if the republicans aren't colluding with the Russians 😂😂😂

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  • Robert
    06/07/2017
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    I strongly support tougher sanctions on the USSR. They have interfered in our elections, backed Assad in Syria and have aggressively taken over territory in Ukraine. We need to keep pressuring them to make better decisions on the world stage.

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  • Nancy
    06/07/2017
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    I support all reasonable actions on the part of Congress to make it clear that the current administration's love affair with Russia does not extend to the rest of our government or our citizenry.

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  • Janelle9876
    06/08/2017
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    We need more sanctions on Russia or we will look like a weak country.

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  • Ticktock
    06/07/2017
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    A response given to the Russians for their continued interference in our society and others needs to be sharp enough to act as a deterrent for Putin's and the GRUs interests in cyber espionage. The Russians are not going to give up their cyber espionage it's relatively inexpensive, there are no physical assets expended against an adversary, the Russian resources need are readily available (the hackers work on contract to GRU), these resources can pay for themselves via ID theft, stolen credit cards and hacking banks, they can be deployed against any adversary and they are deniable (they don't work directly for the Russian Government). All three avenues sound like a good start but the best would be a prolonged denial of access to the internet as a whole. The criminalization of any act by a US citizen that assists a foreign power with any form of cyber warfare; has knowledge of an cyberattack before, during or after the event; or receives any material used in cyberattacks. Their are US citizens in country that had knowledge and participated in the Russian cyber warfare that may have been paid for services they provided. Russia needs some of it's own method used against it until they choose to withdraw.

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  • Carol
    06/08/2017
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    More sanctions are important, but how do we protect our elections from our voting booths being tampered with by the Russians to do cyber warfare on the US?? How are we going to be protected by a National Security Director and an NSA Director who REFUSE to answer questions of the Senate Oversight Committee??? This is not ACCEPTABLE!! Do your job IMPEACH THIS UNSTABLE PRESIDENT!!

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  • thegreatshredman
    06/07/2017
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    How about we do the investigation first? I don't trust the U.S. intelligence agencies usually because of their connections to U.S. corporate interests. So now I'm not gonna just trust them on this especially since they didn't release the evidence of Russian hacking. Obviously there's something going on. We need an investigation by a completely independent commission (no U.S. or Russia ties) to find out exactly what happened. Then we can talk about the possibility of sanctions. If the DNC emails were merely leaked and not altered with in any way by the Russians, I don't think sanctions should be placed, but if the emails and/or voting machines, polls; etc. were tampered with, sanctions should definitely be in the conversation. Also, if Trump's gonna get impeached because of all of this they better get Pence too.

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  • Cynthia
    06/07/2017
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    I think Sanctions against Russia is a good start but I think by the time everything is said and done we may have to do more than that. We need to finish the investigation and see just how far this goes.

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  • Jackie
    06/07/2017
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    If we aren't strong in our actions with Putin's Russia, he WILL take over Europe. And Putin is head of a mob, not a nation.

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  • Karen
    06/07/2017
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    Nice to see some elected officials in government are taking Russian interference and necessity for stronger sanctions seriously. Regardless of what your political view, Russia is 'going to town' with their agenda to disrupt institutions in many countries, largely unchallenged. It's sad to see so many partisans in the U.S. still finding time to tweet denials. Not sure how that helps us defend Democracy.

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