US House Democrats introduce new Iran, Russia sanctions bill

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It was revealed that the U.S. energy industry has been lobbying against the bill and some Republican House members, particularly from oil-producing states, have said they might want changes.

The Senate passed the sanctions measure by 98-2 on June 15, but it has been stalled in the House, where President Donald Trump's fellow Republicans hold a larger majority than in the Senate.

"Right now, we have a procedural issue", and Republicans are working with Democrats regarding sending the bill back to the Senate, Ryan told reporters at a news conference.

The Senate changed the bill to address that issue, but also tweaked it in a way that Democrats said weakened a provision requiring Congress to approve any effort by the president to ease sanctions on Russian Federation.

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Iron ore is among China's biggest imports from the North after it stopped buying coal this year due to the sanctions. He said Chinese imports from the North fell 36.5 percent in March, 41.6 percent in April and 31.6 percent in May.

Hoyer said he doesn't believe the White House is supportive of the measure, but Democrats plan to introduce a companion bill to the Senate's in the House Wednesday. "We could have fixed it in five minutes", Senator Bob Corker, the Republican chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told reporters.

The U.S. energy industry has been lobbying against the bill and some Republican House members, particularly from oil-producing states, have said they might want changes.

Officials from the State and Treasury Departments met with both Republican and Democratic congressional aides last week to express concerns about the Senate's Russian Federation sanctions bill, two senior congressional staffers confirmed to CNN.

Ryan has spoken in favor of the Senate sanctions bill but has not specifically pledged to bring it to the House floor intact, deferring instead to the House committees with jurisdiction over the matter. Hoyer said he offered the GOP a compromise last week that was aimed at expediting action on the Senate-passed sanctions bill: giving only the majority or minority leader the power to force the vote.

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The delay has frustrated Democrats, and some of Trump's fellow Republicans, who think the president is so eager to improve relations with Russian Federation that he will not retaliate for Moscow's worldwide aggression.

Democrats in the Senate have launched an "unprecedented obstruction" campaign of President Donald Trump's nominees, the White House said Monday. We think that that is a fair analogy, because Republicans now control the Senate.

"In an effort to prevent President Trump from following through on the policies for which the American people voted, Senate democrats are putting his nominations through time- consuming parliamentary procedures not seen by the previous Administration, it said".

The American Petroleum Institute said late last week that the bill would expand a prohibition on US energy companies from being involved in oil projects located in Russia to projects around the world that include Russian energy firms. Two congressional aides told The Daily Beast that "the net effect of the changes [the Trump administration] wants would certainly weaken one of the legislation's most important components".

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"Thus far, the nomination process has been defined by the failure of the Trump administration to submit names for hundreds of vacant jobs, incomplete and delayed ethics and nominations paperwork from the nominees themselves, and repeated withdrawals of nominees for key positions", the Senate minority leader said in a statement.

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