Congress strikes deal on bill to slap new sanctions on Russia

It also lets Congress review any Trump administration effort to ease sanctions.

July 22, 2017, 1:25 PM

— -- The House and Senate have struck a deal that could send to President Trump's desk this summer a bill that slaps new sanctions on Russia.

In addition to the new sanctions on Russia for its interference in the U.S. 2016 election and its military aggression in Ukraine and Syria, the bill also gives Congress the power to review any effort by the Trump administration to ease or end sanctions against Moscow.

The bill also includes stiff economic penalties against Iran and North Korea.

"The legislation ensures that both the majority and minority [parties] are able to exercise our oversight role over the administration's implementation of sanctions," said Rep. Steny Hoyer of Maryland, the number-two House Democrat.

The deal on the legislation comes amid concerns expressed by both Democrats and some Republicans that the Trump administration may be considering returning to Russian control two compounds in Maryland and New York that were seized by the Obama administration in December as punishment for the election meddling.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, announced Saturday morning that a vote on the bill -- the Russia, Iran and North Korea Sanctions Act -- will take place Tuesday.

He tweeted that the bill sends a message to countries that "threaten America and our interests."

Those who threaten America and our interests should take notice—your actions have consequences.

— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) July 22, 2017

Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said, “Given the many transgressions of Russia, and President Trump’s seeming inability to deal with them, a strong sanctions bill such as the one Democrats and Republicans have just agreed to is essential. I expect the House and Senate will act on this legislation promptly, on a broad bipartisan basis and send the bill to the President’s desk.”

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