Biden accused of “surrendering” to Russia
U.S. President Joe Biden is facing bipartisan backlash to his administration’s agreement with Germany that allows a controversial Russian natural-gas pipeline to be completed, Politico writes.
Biden and his deputies have long been at odds with members of Congress on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, with lawmakers overwhelmingly approving a slate of mandatory sanctions aimed at crippling the pipeline.
The president waived many of those sanctions earlier this year as part of his broader efforts to repair transatlantic alliances with countries like Germany, which has been pushing for Nord Stream 2 to be completed. And on Wednesday, the U.S. and Germany announced a deal aimed at mollifying Ukraine, which stands to lose the most from the pipeline’s completion.
“I’m not happy about it,” said Sen. Tim Kaine, a member of the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations committees. “I’m not happy about it in terms of the Russia politics, and I’m not happy about it in terms of climate change.
Biden’s agreement with Germany drew heavy criticism from Republicans, who accused Biden of “surrendering” to Putin. “This is a generational geopolitical mistake,” said Sen. Ted Cruz , who co-authored the sanctions and has been holding up Biden’s State Department nominees to force action on the pipeline. “Russian dictators decades from now will be reaping billions of dollars every year from Joe Biden’s gift.”
The U.S. and Germany have long been at odds over the risks and benefits of the pipeline. Germany views it as an economic priority and a way to import cheap energy into the country. The U.S., meanwhile, has maintained for consecutive administrations that the pipeline will damage European energy security in the long-term and will only serve Putin’s interests.