House Passes Russia Sanctions Bill Limiting Trump’s Power

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Juliegrace Brufke Capitol Hill Reporter
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The House overwhelmingly approved legislation placing sanctions on Russia, Iran and North Korea while placing restrictions on President Donald Trump’s ability to terminate or ease penalties on the Kremlin Tuesday.

“These three regimes, in different parts of the world, are threatening vital U.S. interests and destabilizing their neighbors. It is well past time that we forcefully respond,” House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce said on the House floor ahead of the vote. “Under Vladimir Putin, Russia has invaded its neighbor Ukraine, seizing its territory and destabilizing its government. It poses a threat to our NATO allies in Europe, as Moscow works to undermine democratic values with determination and sophistication.”

Proponents of the bill argued it was critical to ensure proper oversight was in place in the wake of the president saying he was considering easing sanctions on Russia.

“To ensure these economic sanctions remain in place as long as Russian aggression continues, this bill empowers Congress to review and disapprove any sanctions relief,” Royce continued. “This strong oversight is necessary and appropriate. After all, it is Congress that the Constitution empowers to regulate commerce with foreign nations.”

Just three members — GOP Reps. Justin Amash of Michigan, Jimmy Duncan of Tennessee and Thomas Massie of Kentucky — opted to vote against the bill.

The bill is expected to pass with bipartisan support in the upper chamber. The measure has enough bipartisan support that Congress would likely overturn a presidential veto if Trump opts not to sign the legislation into law.

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