State Dept powwows with Senate Dems looking to block Ted Cruz’s Nord Stream 2 sanctions: report

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Senate Democrats are scrambling to block legislation authored by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) that seeks to levy sanctions against Russia and its Nord Stream 2 Pipeline.

State Department officials convened at the urging of Senate Democrats Monday in order to brief the latter ahead of a vote in the coming days. Cruz will need at least 10 Democrats on his side in order for the bill to pass the Senate.

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) organized the meeting, and with the typically frantic hyperbole common to Democrats, he asserted that “Sen. Cruz’s desire is to break the United States from Europe,” adding “I think this amendment is really unwise, and I don’t know where the votes will land on it.”

“We asked them to brief the group of senators who we know are undecided,” Murphy said of the meeting with the State Department officials.

Democratic Sens. Jon Tester (MT), Joe Manchin (W-VA), Jeanne Shaheen (NH), Jackie Rosen (NV.) and John Hickenlooper (CO) were among the senators at Monday night’s briefing. Victoria Nuland, the undersecretary of State for political affairs, explained that the State Department does not believe that sanctioning the pipeline would deter Russia from invading Ukraine.

“The message was that it would hurt the negotiations that have been going on with Germany, with the Ukraine in terms of Russia’s impact on the Ukraine,” Tester said. He added that the Biden administration needed to do a better job and point out where exactly the flaws exist in Cruz’s bill.

“It was very, very interesting, I think it puts Germany in a difficult situation. … We’ve got to make sure if we’re going to do sanctions that the sanctions are focused on the problem and not on collateral folks.”

Cruz found the move “remarkable,” tweeting that it appears State Department staffers should “register as lobbyists for Putin.”

Democrats agreed to vote on the bill and set a 60-vote threshold under the condition that Cruz would stop blocking President Biden’s many radical nominees that he continues to try and ram through confirmation. The Senate must vote on Cruz’s legislation by Jan. 14, and the Texas senator believes his chances are good.

“Senate Dems have a choice. Do they: (1) Stand up to Putin, stop Russian aggression, and support Ukraine & “virtually all of Europe and even half the German government” OR (2) Put partisan loyalty to the Biden WH above US national security? It should be a simple choice,” Cruz added in a tweet over the weekend.

Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is also drafting legislation that is meant to be an alternative to Cruz’s legislation, though it will not get a vote this week.

“It is, as I’ve called it, the mother of all sanctions legislation … that would be poised, ready to go, if Russia invaded Ukraine,” Menendez said.

Menendez added that he believes his bill would “bring a large universe [of] people who know that this is the better way to achieve the goal of not having Russia invade Ukraine than Cruz’s Nord Stream sanctions.”

Cruz has faced harsh criticism of late after recently labeling the Capitol protest and riot of Jan 6. a “violent terrorist attack,” which kicked his damage control function into high gear as Fox News’ Tucker Carlson raked him over the coals for it on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” last week.

That justified denigration of the senator notwithstanding, after four years of U.S./Russian collusion hoaxes, the hypocrisy from the Biden regime and its media allies as it relates to Cruz’s proposed bill is so blatant and obvious it can be seen from space.


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