Democratic Representatives Cori Bush of Missouri and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota voted against the the bill introduced to suspend energy imports from Russia, per a Newsweek report. Another 15 Republicans also voted against the bill. Omar said the sanction would do more harm than good for Russian citizens.
President Biden announced a ban on Russian energy imports including oil, gas and coal from Russia on Tuesday, reported Newsweek. Omar provided an explanation as to why she was going to decide to vote ‘no.’
Omar said on Tuesday that she would vote against the bill, saying that a ban wouldn’t end well for the people of Russia or for those living in Europe. The European Union (EU) is heavily dependent on Russian gas and oil.
“That’s not only going to have a devastating impact on the people of Russia, but on Europe as well,” Omar said in an interview with The Hill TV. “When we’re having these conversations, they can’t be about just the immediate, gratifying response that we want to come up with.”
Omar also said the sanction might mean something different years from now than it does at the current moment.
“I think ultimately, this is not going to end well, for the the actual people of Russia, and it’s not going to end well, for the people of Europe as well,” said Omar, via Newsweek.
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However, she does not oppose sanctions put on Putin and his allies, per Newsweek. Instead, her concern is how “broad-based sanctions” will devastate the people.
Representative Bush hadn’t explained why she also decided to vote against the bill. However, her and Omar are allies on most issues including police reform and reproductive rights.
The bill did pass the House with a 414 to 17 vote Wednesday night. It is currently unclear which way Senate will vote on the bill.