Ukraine’s latest war: Biden under growing pressure to ban Russian oil imports

Joe Biden is under mounting pressure to ban oil imports from Russia, with a diverse coalition of Republicans and Democrats calling on the US president to cut America’s energy ties with the Kremlin and increase oil production in the United States.

Joe Manchin, the West Virginia Democrat who chairs the Senate Energy Committee, said on Tuesday that the United States imports more than half a million barrels a day of crude oil and other petroleum products from Russia. . He called on the White House to “take strong action to unleash American energy, up to and including banning Russian oil imports at a time when they are attacking our allies.”

Manchin’s comments were echoed by Senate Republicans, who have long opposed the administration’s energy agenda and called for an expansion of US oil production and a rejection of Russian oil in the United States.

John Thune, the number two Republican in the Senate, said Tuesday: “One area where we can really, really help the effort in Ukraine, help Americans in their pocketbooks, and help Europe and other countries around the world, is to get America’s energy production off the bench and back in the game.”

Meanwhile, more left-leaning Democratic lawmakers have also called for a ban on Russian oil imports while rejecting calls to boost U.S. oil and gas production. Ed Markey, the progressive Democratic senator from Massachusetts, introduced legislation on Tuesday banning imports of Russian oil.

But the White House and several key Democratic lawmakers have yet to buy into the idea.

Chuck Schumer, the Senate’s top Democrat, appeared to dismiss Manchin’s comments on Tuesday, saying, “The United States is a major oil producer. We receive only 1% of all imports from Russia. And the bottom line is this: the real problem with rising gas prices is scams and monopolies. Democrats are focused on those two issues.

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