One of the Republican senators back from a trip to Moscow is suggesting that Congress went too far in punishing Russia for meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
“I’ve been pretty upfront that the election interference — as serious as that was, and unacceptable — is not the greatest threat to our democracy,” Sen. Ron Johnson said in an interview with the Washington Examiner published over the weekend. “We’ve blown it way out of proportion.”
“We need to really honestly assess what actually happened, what effect did it have, and what effect are our sanctions actually having, positively and negatively,” the Republican from Wisconsin said.
Johnson won re-election in 2016, with President Donald Trump on the top of the ticket. He has said that the Senate may have gone too far with mandatory sanctions against a host of Russian entities, leaving Trump with too little negotiating room on other matters. He also said the sanctions did not appear to be working as intended.