WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement after Russia’s state and media sources reported the Russian presidential elections have resulted in the re-election of President Vladimir Putin to another six-year term:
“Today, in further violation of its international commitments, the Russian government once again deprived its citizens of the fundamental right to choose their political leadership. The Kremlin's systematic dismantling of governing institutions, political pluralism and independent media in Russia show how increasingly desperate Vladimir Putin is to retain his grip on power. Today’s sham election is a grim reminder of Putin’s authoritarianism and the precarious plight of Russia’s many proud and brave democracy advocates.
“I call on the Trump Administration to condemn in no uncertain terms the Kremlin’s efforts to undermine democracy in the Russian Federation, as well as its efforts to do so abroad. I also call on the Administration to continue the United States' long, bipartisan tradition of supporting political rights, human rights and dignity of Russia's citizens.”