U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement on the administration’s announcement of new sanctions against Russia for the SolarWinds intrusion, reports of bounties on U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan, and attempts to interfere in the 2020 U.S. elections:
“We’ve heard for weeks that sanctions on Russia were coming, and now the administration has finally taken action. I commend the administration for these actions, but I consider them less than a half step forward. What is missing is a robust effort to actually stop the completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. To change Russian behavior, the administration must target Putin and his projects and impose real consequences. This unwillingness to follow U.S. law, which requires mandatory sanctions on all vessels, companies, and individuals involved in the pipeline’s construction, is a gift to Putin, and boosts the Kremlin’s plans to strengthen its geopolitical and economic power in Europe.
"The lack of Nord Stream 2 sanctions today makes it even more obvious the administration, for unknown reasons, is foot-dragging on this issue. Bipartisan congressional action demands the administration move quickly. Fortunately, there is still time to rectify this hesitation, and I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate and in the administration to do just that.”