May 25, 2024
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Gottheimer Praises Bipartisan Effort to Stop Putin’s ‘Dictatorial March’

While the war in Ukraine can’t be subsidized with American dollars, it is imperative that the United States and other democratic international allies combine to “stop [Vladmir] Putin in his tracks,” said Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-Dist. 5).

“We’ve all seen the horrific images out of Ukraine, and what I’m hearing clearly is that we must put a stop to Putin’s dictatorial march,” said Gottheimer in an email exchange with The Jewish Link. “As Putin continues his invasion of Ukraine, it is critical that the United States stands strong and committed to the sovereignty of Ukraine and the freedom of the Ukrainian people.”

The moves to punish Russia for its invasion have elicited strong bipartisan pushback in Congress.Gottheimer, who is co-chair of the House’s Problem Solvers Caucus, said he is helping to lead a strong bipartisan effort to push for additional military equipment, including airplanes.

The caucus has 58 members, equally divided between Republicans and Democrats, who seek cooperation on key policy issues.

With Republican caucus co-chair Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, legislation was introduced in the House to ban imports of Russian oil, petroleum, liquefied natural gas and coal. Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) introduced companion legislation in the Senate. President Joe Biden on March 8 signed an executive order to ban the import of Russian oil, liquefied natural gas and coal.

“The Russians are killing innocent civilians, violating ceasefires in refugee corridors and escalating their horrific war,” said Gottheimer. “We need to hit Putin where it hurts. This ban gives us the opportunity to stick it to Putin, work with our allies to stabilize the energy market across the world, safeguard our nation’s energy security and boost America’s energy independence.”

He praised the agreement reached between the U.S. and its allies to release 60 million barrels from global oil reserves and the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve to reduce gas prices, adding that existing wells in the U.S. have come back online for 18 straight weeks and active rigs are up more than 60% since Biden took office, hopefully helping to reduce gas prices.

Calling the ban “a moral and strategic imperative for our great nation,” Gottheimer said a comprehensive approach helps eliminate America’s reliance not only on Russian oil, but also on terrorist states and “bad actor” regimes. “It’s time to cut off ruthless dictators like Putin from American dollars,” he added.

Congress passed and Biden signed a bill giving $13.6 billion in emergency military and humanitarian aid to Ukraine. Gottheimer said following Zelensky’s “moving” address to Congress last week, the administration announced an additional aid package, including $800 million for military equipment such as antiaircraft systems, drones and helicopters. He praised Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who Gottheimer said “has shown incredible courage, leadership and dedication.”

Gottheimer said the bipartisan support displayed for Zelensky and Ukraine has been “a proud moment” for American democracy and warned other dictatorial regimes around the world, such as China and Iran, are watching reactions to the invasion closely.

“In times of great distress, when innocent lives and our allies are being attacked, we have always done best when we stood together united,” noted Gottheimer. “We must put country over party and continue to show a unified American and NATO response to Russia’s invasion.”

By Debra Rubin

 

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