RELEASE: Bipartisan Legislation to Ban Russian Energy Imports Introduced in House

Led by Reps. Gottheimer, Fitzpatrick. Companion to Sens. Manchin, Murkowski Senate Legislation. Hitting Putin Where it Hurts

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Monday, March 7, 2022, the bipartisan Ban Russian Energy Imports Act was formally introduced in the House of Representatives, led by Reps. Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) and Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-1). The bill will ban the United States from importing Russian crude oil, petroleum, petroleum products, liquefied natural gas (LNG) and coal. Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) introduced the companion legislation in the Senate.

“We can’t subsidize Putin’s war in Ukraine with American dollars. The Russians are killing innocent civilians, violating cease fires in refugee corridors, and escalating assaults,” said Rep. Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5). “We need to hit Putin where it hurts. By banning the import of Russian oil here to the U.S., we have the opportunity to stick it to Putin, work with our allies to stabilize the energy market across the world, safeguard our nation’s energy security, and boost America’s energy independence. I’m also glad the Administration announced a global utilization of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve — 60 billion barrels — to help get gas prices globally down. Existing wells are coming back online. We’ve seen that now for 18 straight weeks. Overall, the number of active rigs is up more than 60 percent since the beginning of the Administration. This should all help relieve global gas prices.”

“By continuing to import oil from Russia, the U.S. is supporting Russian energy coercion and helping Putin to bankroll his brutal and unjustified war against Ukraine,” said Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01). “We must put an end to the importation of Russian energy products now. Our bipartisan Ban Russian Energy Imports Act will send Putin and his cronies a clear message: the U.S. will secure our own energy independence, and we will not partake in Russia’s energy manipulation tactics. I implore House and Senate leadership to swiftly bring this legislation to the floor for a vote.”

The Ban Russian Energy Imports Act would:

  • Declare a national emergency specifically with respect to the threat to our national security, foreign policy, and economy that exists as a result of Russian aggression against Ukraine and directs the President to prohibit imports of crude oil, petroleum, petroleum products, LNG, and coal from Russia.
  • The President has had the authority to take these actions since 1917; this legislation does not grant additional authority. This approach is modeled on the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.
  • The ban would be in place during the national emergency and either the President or Congress would be able to terminate the emergency and the import ban.
  • The bill exempts product that is already loaded or in transit at the time of enactment.

Find the bill text here.

Gottheimer and Fitzpatrick’s bipartisan includes the following original cosponsors: Ed Case, Peter Meijer, Jared Golden, David McKinley, Chrissy Houlahan, Jimmy Panetta, Tom Reed, Steven Horsford, David Valadao, Tom Suozzi, Chellie Pingree, Steve Cohen, Chris Pappas, Jim Costa, Mike Thompson, Derek Kilmer, Dean Phillips, Vicente González, Darren Soto, Tom Malinowski, Abigail Spanberger, Brad Schneider, Elaine Luria, Kathy Manning, Dan Meuser, Carolyn Bourdeaux, Scott Peters, Debbie Dingell, Sean Casten, Conor Lamb, Dan Newhouse, Michael Burgess, Kaiali'i Kahele, Susie Lee, Jeff Van Drew, Kurt Schrader, Mario Diaz-Balart, Joseph Morelle, John Katko, Vern Buchanan, Susan Wild, Brad Sherman, J. Luis Correa, Andy Kim, Elissa Slotkin, and Haley Stevens.

“Stop the import of Russian oil! Putin is using energy as a tool to fund his unjust and inhumane war on Ukraine. Real energy security comes from the U.S. reducing our dependence on fossil fuels and foreign fuel. A ban on Russian oil will defund Putin’s war and move our country toward energy independence. True energy independence will help lower energy costs for New Yorkers,” said Rep. Tom Suozzi (NY-03).

“Every time we buy a barrel of Russian oil, we are helping fund Putin’s war against Ukraine. We need to take immediate action to reduce global reliance on Russian energy and increase our domestic energy production,” said Rep. David Valadao (CA-21). “People at home are already feeling the consequences of rising energy costs, and restoring American energy independence should be a top priority to increase our national security and keep costs low.”

“I applaud President Biden’s actions taken thus far to support Ukraine and stabilize global markets. But despite overwhelming sanctions already imposed on Russia by the U.S. and countries around the world, President Putin continues to wage an unjust, bloody war on the people of Ukraine,” said Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-Maine). “We don’t have to choose between our democratic values and economic interests. By cutting Russia off from its main source of cashflow that’s fueling the war and by making transformational investments in cleaner renewable energy technologies, we can further our commitment to the Ukrainian people and keep our long-term energy goals to mitigate the climate crisis in mind.”

“The United States must return to the energy portfolio we had just one year ago,” said Rep. Jeff Van Drew (NJ-2). “There is absolutely no reason why the United States should be actively purchasing any type of energy source from Russia, while we are more than capable of becoming energy independent and producing an alternative to Russian products. Russia has defied international law and is attempting to dismantle world order, which should not be rewarded by the continued importing of Russian energy.”

“Putin coldly calculated that we would not take the step of ceasing Russian oil imports,” said Rep. Ed Case (HI-01). “We must prove him dead wrong and set an example for the world that we are willing to pay the price to stop him and any others who would follow.”

Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux (GA-07) said, “Putin and Russian oligarchs cannot be allowed to profit from their invasion of Ukraine. The United States must ban the importation of Russian oil and gas. This crisis is the latest reminder that American energy production is a national security issue. While we need to make sure we have energy security, renewable clean energy is the future, and Georgia is poised to be a national leader in this effort.”

Rep. Sean Casten (IL-06) said, “Right now, the Ukrainian people are being terrorized by a brutal despot running a petrostate whose power is the result of global dependence on Russian oil. This must end. Banning Russian energy imports is a necessary first step, but preventing oil-rich oligarchies from being able to afford military aggression in the long term demands that we double down on cleaner, cheaper energy produced in the US.”

“The world is watching in shock and horror as Russia continues its unprovoked assault on the sovereign democratic nation of Ukraine. While the United States and our allies have taken significant steps to ensure Russia pays a steep price for the death and destruction brought on by this war, we must use every possible tool to cut off Putin’s access to capital and stop the bloodshed. That’s why I’m joining my colleagues, both Democrats and Republicans, in introducing this legislation to ban Russian energy imports and to demonstrate American leadership in countering Putin’s brutal attack on the Ukrainian people and standing up for democracy and freedom everywhere,” said Rep. Susie Lee (NV-03).

Rep. Peter Meijer (MI-3) said, “Banning Russian oil imports will send a clear and swift signal to Vladimir Putin that the ongoing aggression against Ukraine will continue to be met with serious consequences. Our country’s existing dependence on Russian oil is a serious national security threat, and this bipartisan bill enables us to strip Putin of any ability to use energy as a weapon of war. I am proud to join my colleagues in this effort to reaffirm our commitment to our NATO allies and our domestic energy independence.”

“The United States will continue to do everything we can to mobilize our global allies against Russia’s aggression. To that end, today, I am helping introduce bipartisan legislation to ban the importation of Russian oil. This legislation would be devastating to Putin and his inner circle, who are plotting and financing this illegal war. It is important to acknowledge that this effort will require sacrifice from Americans at the pump. To mitigate those effects, the Administration has coordinated the release of 60 million barrels of oil from strategic reserves to stabilize gas prices while we diversify our own energy supply. Importantly, we cannot afford to prop up Putin’s war by purchasing his oil –  America will support the people of Ukraine,” said Rep. Brad Schneider (IL-10).

“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and blatant violation of international law will not go unchecked. An energy import ban would further cripple Russia’s economy and demonstrate America’s commitment to supporting Ukraine. The United States must continue working with its allies to counter Russia’s aggression while also advancing domestic production of clean energy,” said Rep. Scott Peters (CA-52).

“We should lead by example and stop importing fossil fuel from a country that is committing an unjust and unprovoked attack on a democracy,” said Rep. Jimmy Panetta (CA-20). “Russia relies on oil and gas for 60% of its exports, and although we don’t want to go to war with Russia, we do want to support Ukraine by ensuring that there are severe economic consequences for this invasion. We may have to pay more at the pump because of this attack and our bipartisan response, but it is worth it to ensure that Putin pays the price for his paranoid adventurism and his attack on a peaceful democracy."

“Every day we continue to buy Putin's oil and gas is another day we fund and enable his inhumane and unjustified war against the people of Ukraine,” said Rep. Chrissy Houlahan (PA-06). “As Americans, we must stand united in the face of Putin's aggression, and passing the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act is a significant step in the right direction. More remains to be done, however, and I will continue to aggressively pursue all options to hold Russia accountable while also minimizing the costs to everyday Pennsylvanians and Americans.”

“For days I have been hearing from my constituents - Democrats and Republicans alike - that we must do everything we can to support the brave people of Ukraine against the horrific attack by Vladimir Putin. That’s why I’m joining a bipartisan group of lawmakers to introduce the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act to stop the purchase of Russian oil and gas,” said Rep. Kathy Manning (NC-6). “We must demonstrate that United States stands with Ukraine. If we continue to buy Russian oil, we will not truly be holding Putin accountable for his heinous actions. I believe an embargo on Russian energy is necessary to decrease Putin’s gas revenue - this loss of revenue is a strong signal he will understand. I am very aware of the high prices at the gas pumps already, and that’s why I am working with colleagues to find measures that will stabilize the global energy market and keep costs down.”

“It makes no sense to continue to rely on Russian imports for oil especially since it emboldens Putin’s Russia and we have an abundant supply. There is no better way to stand up to this egotistical tyrant than the United States regaining its energy independence and immediately cutting Russia off from the lucrative American market. This is critical not only to protect our own national security but that of our allies,” said Rep. Michael Burgess (TX-26).

“America and the world are united in standing with the people of Ukraine against Vladimir Putin’s unjustified invasion and attack on their country,” said Rep. Chris Pappas (NH-01). “While the United States has already leveled historic sanctions to cripple Russia’s economy, it is clear that more is needed. While Ukrainians fight for freedom and democracy, the United States must do its part to stand by our values and with our allies. That is why I support banning imports of Russian oil and other energy sources that are bankrolling Putin’s war machine that has killed thousands and displaced millions. I’ve also urged the Biden Administration to use every tool available to lower energy costs for Granite Staters, including releasing additional barrels from the Strategic Oil Reserves, and I will continue to fight to lower costs for New Hampshire families caused by Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.”

Rep. Brad Sherman (CA-30) said, “As President Zelensky continues to show incredible bravery in the face of this brutal incursion, I am proud to join my colleagues in standing with Ukraine by halting energy imports from Russia. Because of fuel efficiency standards that have improved automotive efficiency by nearly 100%, and because of alternative energy and conservation measures, America is in a far stronger position to live without Russian oil.”

“Currently, the United States is supporting Russia’s war on Ukraine with the millions of dollars being spent on Russian oil and petroleum products every day. We must stand with our ally, Ukraine, by putting a stop to this unconscionable purchasing and unleashing America’s domestic energy production. The Ban Russian Energy Imports Act will immediately terminate the purchasing of Russian oil, hitting Vladimir Putin where it hurts. I urge Speaker Pelosi to bring this legislation to the floor immediately so we can remove President Biden’s stranglehold on domestic energy production and truly support the efforts of the Ukrainian people. Energy security is national security, and an energy-independent America means a safer world,” said Rep. Dan Newhouse (WA-04).

“I fully support the goals of the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act and have written the President to urge him to cease American purchases. There may be an impact on gas prices, but Americans understand the need to stand up for democracy, the rule of law and the value of ‘sticking it to Putin at the pump,’” said Rep. Steve Cohen (TN-09).

“The U.S. has the capacity and responsibility to produce our own energy,” stated Rep. Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15). “We cannot continue to rely on foreign dictators like Vladimir Putin to satisfy global energy needs while he terrorizes Ukraine and incites economic instability. I am proud to sign onto this legislation to strengthen America’s energy independence and support our friends and allies in their time of need.”

“The bipartisan Ban Russian Energy Imports Act represents a necessary step in raising costs for the Putin regime as Russia carries out a heinous assault on the free people of Ukraine. I’m proud to support this effort to ensure that American dollars are not being used to stabilize the Russian economy under these unprecedented and unacceptable conditions,” said Rep. John Katko (NY-24).

“We are proud to cosponsor the Ban Russian Energy Imports Act. This bipartisan effort sends the important message that the Russian invasion of Ukraine will not be tolerated. This is a step in the right direction, but we must unleash America's natural resources now for the sake of national security and for the American people who are suffering from the pain of inflation,” said Rep. Tom Reed (NY-23).

“The best way to defeat oil-rich tyrants like Putin is to deny them the source of their wealth, while we work faster to become the world's clean energy superpower,” said Rep. Tom Malinowski (NJ-7). “This ban is a step towards self-reliance, and as we work to mitigate any effects on our economy, any member voting for it acknowledges that the fight for freedom is worth sacrifice.”

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