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Rep. Waters Slams Donald Trump’s Failure to Enforce Sanctions on Russia

October 25, 2017
Press Release

Rep. Waters Slams Donald Trump’s Failure to Enforce Sanctions on Russia 


WASHINGTONCongresswoman Maxine Waters (CA-43), Ranking Member of the House Financial Services Committee, released the following statement on Donald Trump’s failure to take action to enforce sanctions on Russia prior to the October 1st deadline required by the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act  (H.R. 3364; Public Law No: 115-44):


“Donald Trump’s apparent refusal to enforce new sanctions against Russia in a timely manner is disgraceful.  Congress passed legislation mandating new sanctions in response to Russia’s interference in our nation’s 2016 elections.  The president then signed the sanctions legislation into law only after it became clear that Congress could override his veto.  Despite the president’s signature, the Trump administration has yet to issue implementation regulations as required by the law.  The administration had until October 1st to do so.


“It should surprise no one that Donald Trump would not want to enforce penalties against Russia when he has refused to condemn or criticize Russia’s actions, despite clear evidence of Russian interference in United States elections.  Russia, under its president, Vladimir Putin, is one of the United States’ most aggressive adversaries.  Thanks to Donald Trump Jr.’s emails, we already know that Trump Jr., former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort, and Trump’s son-in-law and current White House advisor Jared Kushner were all made aware of Russia’s support for Donald Trump’s candidacy and were anxious to meet with representatives of the Russian government in order to receive damaging information about their political opponent.


“I have long maintained that I believe this president and individuals affiliated with his campaign colluded with the Kremlin to undermine the 2016 elections and ensure Donald Trump’s victory.  I have also said that everything that we have learned about Trump’s former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, his attorney Michael Cohen, and his business associate Felix Sater indicates that they may have been involved in an effort to negotiate a backroom deal to lift the U.S. sanctions that had been imposed on Russia prior to Trump’s election. 


“Donald Trump has indicated his desire to lift those sanctions on several occasions.  This would, of course, result in billions of dollars in profits for both Russia and ExxonMobil – a company that negotiated a deal with the Kremlin to drill in the Artic under its then-CEO and now-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.  The fact that Trump has, so far, refused to enforce the new sanctions that Congress imposed on Russia for its attack on our democracy raises many more questions that we can only hope Special Counsel Robert Mueller will resolve as part of his ongoing Trump-Russia investigation.


“Ultimately, Congress and the Republican leadership, in particular, must be prepared to act if Donald Trump continues stonewalling or refusing to implement the new sanctions, which passed with overwhelming bipartisan support.”