Rounds and Thune Vote to Ease Sanctions on Russian Oligarch
This afternoon, Senators Mike Rounds and John Thune voted against a bipartisan effort to overturn the lifting of economic sanctions against companies owned by the Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska. The South Dakota Democratic Party issued the following statement from Executive Director Sam Parkinson in response:
“A bipartisan majority of Senators voted today to overrule the Trump Administration’s efforts to ease sanctions against companies owned by a Russian oligarch with close ties to both Paul Manafort and Vladimir Putin. Unfortunately, despite the ongoing investigation of the Special Counsel’s investigation into Russian interference in our elections, Senators Rounds and Thune joined with other Republican senators to block this effort. Once again, Senators Rounds, Thune, and Republicans in Congress are putting loyalty to the wishes of President Trump above the national interest. We call on Rounds and Thune to reconsider their position on this matter and support the efforts to continue these sanctions.
“Given the actions of the Trump administration in this matter, as well as recent revelations that President Trump has gone to “extraordinary lengths” – including seizing notes from his own interpreter – to conceal details about his interactions with Vladimir Putin, we also call upon Senator Thune to release any notes from the meetings he and several other congressional Republicans had with Russian officials on July 4 of this past year. Where President Trump has fallen short in transparency in dealing with a foreign government that interfered in our elections, Senator Thune has the opportunity to do better, and we encourage him to do so.”