Putin is set to respond to Obama’s sanctions of Russian officials with his own list. Several U.S. Senators and officials will be banned from visiting Russia, including Sen. Dick Durbin.
U.S. senators, congressmen and top Obama administration officials are sure to be on Vladimir Putin’s sanctions list; a response to the Obama Administration’s announcement on Monday that 7 Russian officials and 4 Ukrainian officials would be barred from holding assets or traveling to the United States.
Putin is expected to release his retaliation list as early as Tuesday and while the final list is still being crafted, it will include top Obama administration officials and high profile U.S. senators, in an effort to roughly mirror the U.S. sanctions against Russian officials and lawmakers, according to diplomatic sources. At the top of the list in Congress is Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, who recently co-authored a resolution criticizing Russia’s invasion of Crimea.
Durbin’s inclusion on Putin’s list would mirror Obama’s naming of Valentina Matvienko, the head of the upper chamber of the Russian Duma. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell are not expected to be on the Russian sanctions list.
UPDATE: Durbin told The Daily Beast in a statement Monday: “My Lithuanian-born mother would be proud her son made Vladimir Putin’s American enemies list.”
Sen. John McCain, who traveled to Kiev last weekend to meet with Ukrainian leaders, told The Daily Beast that he expects to be on the list and is happy about it.
“You think I’m not going to be on it?” McCain said. “I would be honored to be on that list.”
As I’m sure all the Russian politicians who make Bambi’s laughable list are equally honored – and no more inconvenienced than McStain and Dumbin are.
Bottom line: Bambi’s “tough line” has degenerated to the level of total farce – not that it had all that far to go in the first place.