WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and chair of the U.S. Helsinki Commission, released the following statement on President Joe Biden’s announcement that he would work with Congress to revoke favorable trade status for Russia due to their unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.
“I applaud President Biden for taking an all-hands-on deck approach to countering the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Today’s request that he will work with Congress to deny Russia the normal trade benefits that come alongside WTO membership is another bold, necessary move. We must act swiftly to send legislation to his desk to sign.
“I was proud to work with Senator Portman to introduce legislation last week, the No Trading with Invaders Act, which would provide the tools to deny trade privileges for Russia and also others who invade other countries. A country that invades another country without any provocation should not be entitled to normal trade relations with the United States.
“Additionally, sanctions are inextricably linked with our whole-of-government enforcement policies. The Portman-Cardin No Trading with Invaders Act – and legislation passed by the House this week on a 414-17 vote – would also reauthorize the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act. This Act, a powerful foreign policy and sanctions tool, extends U.S. sanctions against violators of human rights and corrupt actors so they do not escape the consequences of their actions even when their home country fails to seek justice for their victims. It is time to make this a permanent feature of our laws.”