Wednesday, October 11 was a very important day for U.S.-Russia relations, and it would have provided a perfect opportunity for President Trump to symbolically prove that he isn’t beholden to Russian president Vladimir Putin. Instead, the administration decided to raise even more questions about where their true allegiances lie.
“The White House has blown by an October 1 deadline for beginning to implement new sanctions targeting Russia, drawing concern in Congress that President Donald Trump is planning to ignore parts of a bill he grudgingly signed in August.
“The bill required the Trump administration to issue by October 1 ‘regulations or other guidance to specify the persons that are a part of, or operate for or on behalf of, the defense and intelligence sectors of the Government of the Russian Federation.’ The administration has yet to do so. The Treasury and State departments also have not issued guidance on their plans for imposing the measure, a Senate aide said. The aide said that members of the White House’s National Security Council have assured senators that they are ‘getting to’ the sanctions and ‘it’s gonna happen.’ But lawmakers are wary.”
In a joint statement they issued Wednesday, Senators Ben Cardin (D-MD) and John McCain (R-AZ) made no secret of their irritation with the White House:
“The delay calls into question the Trump administration’s commitment to the sanctions bill which was signed into law more than two months ago, following months of public debate and negotiations in Congress. They’ve had plenty of time to get their act together.”
Keep in mind Trump was vehemently opposed to the new sanctions bill and only grudgingly signed it when he realized there were more than enough votes in Congress to override a presidential veto. Trump also issued a signing statement on the day he put his signature on the bill in which he wrote:
“My administration will give careful and respectful consideration to the preferences expressed by the Congress in these various provisions and will implement them in a manner consistent with the President’s constitutional authority to conduct foreign relations.”
When you consider that Trump has yet to say a negative word about Putin or suggested that the Russians represent a threat to the United States and our European allies, this latest lack of action by the White House only serves to reinforce what many of us have suspected since Trump unexpectedly won the election in 2016: Donald Trump is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Russian federation and a traitor to his own nation.
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