U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), a combat veteran and member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, joined Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho) in introducing the Never Yielding Europe’s Territory (NYET) Act to provide the critical support Ukraine needs to defend itself and deter Russian aggression today, while imposing real costs on the Kremlin for its ongoing and potential future aggression against Ukraine.
“The United States, under President Joe Biden’s leadership, has failed to de-escalate Russia’s aggression toward our trusted partner Ukraine and stop Putin’s imperial march. Instead of appeasing the Kremlin and Putin’s regime, the Biden administration needs to take decisive and proactive action,” said Senator Joni Ernst, the first female combat veteran elected to the U.S. Senate. “This effort will immediately stop construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, prosecute sanctions against Russia to punish its aggression, mobilize critical resources to support our democratic partner Ukraine, and fight back against authoritarianism to keep our country safe.”
· Immediately stops construction of the Nord Stream 2 project and would mandate sanctions on the project without a waiver should Russia invade.
· Sends a clear deterrent message to Putin that an invasion of Ukraine will result in massive economic consequences to Russia’s economy, including the prosecution of sanctions.
· Provides $500 million in Foreign Military Financing (FMF) for Ukraine, including $250 million in emergency funding, with $100 million for emergency lethal assistance for critical capabilities like air defense, anti-armor, and anti-ship capabilities.
· Expedites congressional review of arms sales and security assistance to Ukraine.
· Creates a new State Department FMF program for Eastern Europe to help European allies strengthen their own defensive capabilities and incentivize greater burden-sharing.
Ernst, along with eight of her colleagues, sent a letter to Secretary of State Blinken outlining his obligation to protect Americans in Ukraine. For over a month, Ernst has been sounding the alarm about the safety and security of Americans in Ukraine and the need for a clear plan by the State Department.
After Senate Democrats filibustered an effort to reinstate sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline as Russia moves ahead with its aggression on the Ukrainian border, Ernst continued her calls for President Biden to actively support and bolster Ukraine.
This week, Ernst slammed President Biden for increasing America’s reliance on Russia for energy, calling on the administration to unleash U.S. energy production. Ernst also pressed the Biden administration to ensure the safety of American citizens in Ukraine amid Russia’s escalating aggression in the region.
Ernst is also backing the Guaranteeing Ukraine’s Autonomy by Reinforcing its Defense Act (GUARD Act) that would provide critical support to Ukraine and help give them necessary resources to push back against Putin’s hostility.
The full list of Senate cosponsors includes: Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho), Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Todd Young (R-Ind.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), John Kennedy (R-La.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Mitt Romney (R-Utah), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), Richard Burr (R-N.C.), Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), and Mike Rounds (R-S.D.).