Biden Says ‘No One Expected’ His Sanctions To Work Against Putin As He Announced More Sanctions

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Dylan Housman Deputy News Editor
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President Joe Biden said Thursday that “no one expected” sanctions to stop Russian President Vladimir Putin from invading Ukraine as he announced another round of sanctions on Russia.

The Biden administration, along with European allies, ratcheted up economic punishments against Russia Thursday after Putin sent troops and missiles into Ukraine beginning Thursday morning. Biden touted “devastating” sanctions against the Russian regime and its oligarch supporters Thursday, but stopped short of sanctioning Putin directly.


“No one expected the sanctions to prevent anything from happening. This is gonna take time, and we have to show resolve, so he knows what’s coming and so the people of Russia know what he’s brought on them. That’s what this is all about,” Biden said during a press conference. “This is gonna take time, it’s not gonna occur, he’s gonna say ‘Oh my God, these sanctions are coming I’m gonna stand down’. He’s gonna test the resolve of the west to see if we stay together, and we will.”

This directly contradicts the statements made by Vice President Kamala Harris, who said Sunday “the purpose of the sanctions has always been and continues to be deterrence.” (RELATED: Putin Rips Off American Liberals’ Favorite Talking Point To Justify Ukraine Invasion)

Some reporters pointed out that the statement from Biden wasn’t consistent with his administration’s stance. “I thought that was so interesting when President Biden said, ‘No one expected sanctions to prevent anything.’ Actually, that’s exactly what his foreign policy team said again and again, and it’s what his secretary of state said to me on Sunday,” CBS reporter Margaret Brennan said.

Some called for the sanctions to be harsher, including asking Biden to sanction Putin directly and for the west to remove Russia from the SWIFT financial processing system. Germany and Italy were reportedly the two European countries causing a snag in implementing harsher European sanctions, including the SWIFT removal.