WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined leading Senate Democrats today in calling on the U.S. Treasury Department to sanction Russian individuals and government actors for their interference in the 2020 election. Along with Durbin, today’s letter to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was also signed by Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-OR), Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Banking Committee Ranking Member Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Intelligence Committee Vice Chair Mark Warner (D-VA), Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Ranking Member Gary Peters (D-MI), Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Jack Reed (D-RI), Foreign Relations Committee Ranking Member Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Appropriations Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-VT), and Rules Committee Ranking Member Amy Klobuchar (D-MN).
“Congress mandated a broad range of sanctions tools, and it is long past time for the administration to send a direct message to President Putin: the U.S. will respond immediately and forcefully to continuing election interference by the government of the Russian Federation and its surrogates, to punish, deter and substantially increase the economic and political costs of such interference. As many of us have observed, there is virtually no national security threat more serious than that posed by those who would undermine confidence in, and the effective operation of, our democratic elections,” the Senators wrote.
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The National Counterintelligence and Security Center publicly confirmed on August 7 that Russia is working to “publicly denigrate former Vice President Biden,” citing actions by pro-Russia Ukrainian parliamentarian Andriy Derkach, among others.
“We thus urge you to draw upon the conclusions of the Intelligence Community to identify and target for sanctions all those determined to be responsible for ongoing election interference, including any actors within the government of the Russian Federation, any Russian actors determined to be directly responsible, and those acting on their behalf or providing material or financial support for their efforts,” the Senators wrote.
The Senators provided additional classified information through separate channels.
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