February 12, 2018

Trump must send Russia powerful message through tougher actions

By Peter Harrell and Elizabeth Rosenberg

The Trump administration took several actions last week to implement U.S. sanctions on Russia that Congress passed last year. However, while the Trump administration’s actions met the letter of the law, the way Trump implemented the law is not sufficient to deter Russia from continuing to threaten U.S. democracy at home and U.S. interests abroad. The Trump administration and Congress urgently need to take smart, tailored steps to meet the spirit of the law and actually increase the costs Russia faces.

The law that Congress passed last year, the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act, required the Trump administration to take several actions by Jan. 29. First, Treasury had to publish a report naming Russian officials and prominent businessmen, including an assessment of which businessmen are close to Russian President Vladimir Putin and which officials and businessmen have been engaged in corruption. The law also required Trump to provide Congress with information on Russian state-owned companies and an assessment of the potential impacts of possible future sanctions on Russia. Finally, the law required Trump to begin implementing new sanctions against Russia’s defense and intelligence sectors.

Read the full article in The Hill.

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