Will Trump keep sanctions against Russia? Overturning them won’t be easy

President-elect Donald Trump, criticized for his friendly relations with Russian President Vladimir Putin, faces major obstacles if he tries to lift sanctions newly imposed on Russia for election hacking.


Politically, lawmakers of both parties, including Republican leaders, immediately began pressuring him to keep intact the penalties that President Barack Obama rushed into place Thursday following months of foreign hacking.

House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul, R-Texas, said he looked forward to working with the incoming administration to ensure “that — in the future — our response to such aggression is timely, decisive, and forceful enough to convince our adversaries not to do it again.”

“I hope the incoming Trump administration, which has been far too close to Russia throughout the campaign and transition, won’t think for one second about weakening these new sanctions or our existing regime,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York, incoming Senate Democratic leader.

It’s critical that President-elect Trump commit to fully enforcing these sanctions. Anything less will demonstrate weakness in the face of aggression and invite other hostile countries to conduct cyber-attacks against Americans Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa.

The International Emergency Economic Powers Act requires Trump’s treasury secretary to certify that the Russians have stopped hacking in order to lift the sanctions. His nominee, Steven Mnuchin, a film producer, banker and investor, faces challenging confirmation hearings and…

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