Senate Votes To Cap Power Of President On Sanctions

In FOREIGN RELATIONS, RUSSIA -- articles only On

The Senate voted nearly unanimously on Wednesday to allow Congress to strip the president of the power to unilaterally lift existing sanctions against Russia, a matter that had many of President Trump’s allies siding with his harshest critics.

The measure, which was approved 97 to 2 — Senators Rand Paul of Kentucky and Mike Lee of Utah, both Republicans, were the only votes against it — bolsters existing sanctions and would allow Congress to thwart any presidential effort to curtail sanctions without congressional approval.

“This administration has been too eager, far too eager in my mind, to put sanctions relief on the table,” Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the minority leader, said Wednesday. “We cannot let Russia’s meddling in our elections go unpunished, lest they ever consider something similar again.”

Senator Bob Corker, Republican of Tennessee, said the overwhelming passage of the measure “sends a strong signal to President Putin while ensuring the Trump administration has the flexibility it needs.”

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