A message of solidarity with Ukraine and a warning to Putin from the “American Senate”

“At this difficult moment, we are sending a message of bipartisan solidarity and determination to the Ukrainian people, as well as a clear warning to Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin,” 12 prominent senators, Democrats and Republicans, said in a statement.

The statement, signed by Senate leaders Chuck Schumer and Mitch McConnell, is a rare statement of political unity in a deeply polarized Congress.

But the statement lacks the force of law and comes after the bipartisan council failed to reach agreement on a bill to impose sanctions on Russia if it invaded neighboring Ukraine.

Late last month, senators nearly reached a draft agreement on sanctions, but late Tuesday Republicans backed off and submitted their own bill for consideration.

The move infuriated Democratic Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez, who said it was “a shame that Senate Republicans decided to pick a partisan stance rather than work toward consensus on a bipartisan proposal.”

US President Joe Biden announced, on Tuesday, that Washington is ready to impose “severe sanctions” on Russia if it launches an attack on Ukraine, and these sanctions do not require authorization from Congress.

But partisan support from members of the House and Senate will send a strong signal to the Democratic president.

In their joint statement, the senators said they were ready to provide “full support” for the imposition of “strong, severe and effective sanctions against Russia.”

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