Dem Rep. Garamendi: Biden’s ‘Half-Step’ Sanctions for Parts of Ukraine Are ‘Not Going to Be Enough’ 

On Monday’s “CNN Newsroom,” Rep. John Garamendi (D-CA) said President Joe Biden’s plans to prohibit new investment, trade, and financing by Americans to, from, or in areas of Ukraine that Russia has recognized as independent are “a half-step” that are “not going to be enough.” And called for “much stronger sanctions” against Russia.

Garamendi said, “I think it is a step. Frankly, I think it’s about a half-step. I think it’s time for the administration to come in strong with some much stronger sanctions against, not only Putin and his cronies, but also the military and put in place sanctions that go directly to Russia. This is a good step. There’s nothing wrong with what he’s suggesting to do or what he is doing, but it is not going to be enough.”

Host Victor Blackwell then asked about Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s call for the U.S. to sanction Russia now. Garamendi responded, “Well, let’s recognize that Zelensky was getting a little ahead of the game. Now, the game is on. And now, the Russian bear has taken a big bite out of Ukraine. … The economic sanctions and the access to the financial markets of the world, that should be put in place right now. And that could be done step-by-step, sector-by-sector, for example, going after the Russian military. … So, it’s time to ramp up the sanctions. I wouldn’t be pussyfooting around about it right now. And I don’t think Europe will want that to happen.”

He added that the U.S. and its allies “should pick, among the other options, the next very strong sanction and put that in place immediately, in addition to what the White House just decided to do.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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