"With overwhelming Senate passage of the Russian Federation sanctions amendment, the U.S. sends a strong signal to President Putin while ensuring the Trump administration has the flexibility it needs", said Senator Bob Corker, Chairman of the powerful Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Democrats pressed for and succeeded in adding a measure that would restrict President Donald Trump - whose administration has been entangled in investigations into ties to Russian officials - from lifting the sanctions unless approved by Congress.
President Donald Trump appears all but certain to be confronted in coming weeks with a wrenching decision about Russian Federation: whether to veto new, bipartisan sanctions against Moscow, partly for election interference that Trump has said is a fiction created by Democrats.
The Senate on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to impose tough sanctions against Russian Federation for meddling in the United States election, invading Crimea and backing Syrian strongman Basar al Assad.
The legislation would have to pass the House of Representatives and be signed into law by President Trump. Before passing the combined Russia-Iran measure, the chamber also attached a bipartisan amendment signaling support for NATO's Article 5 - which Trump earlier this month notably declined to endorse in Brussels - by a unanimous vote.
The Iran bill, including the Russian Federation sanctions amendment, was expected to pass the Senate by Thursday (local time).
The White House stressed that it is committed to the existing Russian sanctions regime that it believes is best suited to address United States concerns and would keep sanctions in place until Russia resolves the situation in Ukraine.
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"This bill will impose sanctions on Iran for its non-nuclear violations", Cardin said.
The legislation would also restrict the White House from easing sanctions in the future without congressional approval.
Sens. Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Rand Paul, R-Ky., voted against the Russian Federation sanctions package.
The investigation into Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 U.S. election took another turn, as the Washington Post reported Wednesday that Donald Trump is being investigated by special counsel Robert Mueller for possible obstruction of justice.
The only two votes against the Russia-Iran sanctions deal came from GOP Sens.
The power would allow congress to strengthen those sanctions in retaliation for Moscow's alleged interference in the 2016 election and its actions in Syria. "I think what I wouldn't want to do is to close the channels off with something new that's ill-timed".
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