House Votes to Suspend Normal Trade Relations With Russia


WASHINGTON — The House voted overwhelmingly on Thursday to strip Russia of its preferential trade status with the United States, moving to further penalize the country’s economy in response to the invasion of Ukraine.

The lopsided 424-to-8 vote came after President Biden announced last week that the United States and its European allies would take new steps to isolate Russia from the global trading system. The legislation would allow the United States to impose higher tariffs on Russian goods. All of the lawmakers who opposed the measure were Republicans.

The bill is the latest in a series of measures that lawmakers have approved to support Ukraine and punish Russia for its invasion. Others include a ban on Russian gas and oil products and, perhaps more significantly, a $13.6 billion military and humanitarian aid package.

Senator Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York and the majority leader, said he would work to move the House-passed bill through the Senate “quickly.”

The House vote came a day after President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine delivered a searing speech to Congress via video link in which he urged lawmakers to do more to help his country and penalize Russia. His address, as well as a wrenching video he showed of Russian-inflicted carnage in his country, hung heavily over the House floor on Thursday as lawmakers debated the trade bill.

Mr. Zelensky “showed us the absolute horrors that Russia is inflicting on the Ukrainian people in full view of the world,” said Representative Richard E. Neal, Democrat of Massachusetts and the chairman of the Ways and Means Committee. “And he pleaded for us to do more. With the legislation that stands before us at this hour, we intend to answer his call.”

Ana Swanson contributed reporting.


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