Suo. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, e Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., presidente della sottocommissione per le relazioni estere del Senato per l'Europa e la cooperazione regionale per la sicurezza, ha portato la delegazione a dimostrare che gli Stati Uniti. è “united across party lines in support of Ukraine against Putin’s belligerence,” Shaheen said Tuesday.
Shaheen said lawmakers will look to forge a “path forward in Congress to respond to the political situation in Ukraine and Eastern Europe that safeguards Ukraine’s territorial integrity, Europe’s energy security and broader regional stability.”
“Efforts are underway to enhance our laws that will empower the Biden administration with tools to work with our allies to prepare penalties for Putin amid his provocations, and increase aid to Ukraine,” she said in a statement shared with Fox News.
Though lawmakers appear united in their opposition to Russian aggression against Ukraine, achieving a bipartisan method to counter the Kremlin already has senators divided.
The Senate failed to pass a bill led by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, last week that would have slapped sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 Pipeline – which is set to run oil from Russia into Europe through Germany.
A separate bill led by Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., has instead garnered sweeping supporto in his party. It would impose sanctions on the Russian banking system and top officials in the government and military should Putin violate Ukrainian sovereignty.
Shaheen, who had previously backed sanctions on the major Russian pipeline, voted against Cruz’s bill and instead has backed Menendez’s Defending Ukraine Sovereignty Act.
“I’ve led action over the years to stop the pipeline, including my partnership with Sen. Cruz on sanctions that were included in the fiscal year 2021 defense bill and led to a halt in construction of the pipeline,” she said following her vote Thursday.
But the subcommittee chair said Cruz’s latest legislation would “undermine diplomacy at work and risk obstructing Senate business.”
It is unclear if Menendez’s bill – which received backing from Connecticut Democrats Sens. Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal, who also traveled to Kyiv – will garner enough GOP support to push it through the upper chamber.
But senators from across the aisle said the trip to Ukraine showed their resolve to assist Ukraine as Russia continues to mount an aggressive front on their border.
Portman said the recent passage of the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2022 increased its support for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative from $ 250 milioni in 2021 per $ 300 million this year – $ 75 million of which was “specifically designated for lethal assistance.”
“America should be encouraged by Ukraine’s determination to remain free and independent,” the Republican senator said. “A sovereign and democratic Ukraine is not just good for the people of Ukraine, it is important to the stability of Europe and provides a beacon of hope to millions of others who wish for that same freedom.”
Suo. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., echoed Portman’s comments in a statement to Fox News and said, “We stand with the brave people of Ukraine.”
“At a moment of political division in Washington, we instead chose to travel to Ukraine in unity,” lei disse. “Gli Stati Uniti. administration – from the Secretary of State to the President himself – has pledged to help this country. Our message is that there will be consequences if Vladimir Putin chooses to violate the sanctity of this democracy.”