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Young emphasizes need for continued sanctions amid Russian aggression in Ukraine

Lauren Chapman
U.S. Sen. Todd Young (R-Ind.) said current sanctions against Russia – and the threat of more, if Russia goes further in its actions against Ukraine – are the right move.

U.S. Sen. Todd Young (R-Ind.) said the United States needs to be “unified … and resolute” when it comes to addressing Russia’s actions in Ukraine.

And Young was largely complimentary of the Biden administration’s steps in response to the most recent Russian moves.

President Joe Biden announced sanctions targeting Russia’s ability to do business with the West after Russian leader Vladimir Putin declared two Ukrainian regions as independent and ordered in troops as “peacekeepers.”

Young said those sanctions – and the threat of more, if Russia goes further – are the right move. And he said any American military action should be limited to countries that border Ukraine.

“Our existing NATO allies, in order to deter any encroachment on their territory,” Young said.

READ MORE: Allies join U.S. in imposing sanctions pressure on Russia over Ukraine

Young said the reason Americans should care about Russia's actions against Ukraine is that if Putin goes unchecked, it will empower other "dictators or oppressive regimes" to do the same. He specifically cited concerns about China making a move against Taiwan, an important U.S. economic partner.

Asked about former President Donald Trump’s comments praising Putin, Young did not directly rebuke Trump but seemed to disagree with his remarks.

“All of us need to be clear that Vladimir Putin is a threat to the democratic, rules-based order that has benefitted countless Americans,” Young said.

The Hoosier senator also said he believed Russia's moves toward Ukraine were a reaction by Putin to missteps by Biden in both foreign and domestic policy. He cited a lack of cooperation with U.S. allies in its exit from Afghanistan and the Biden administration not pursing "center-left" policies as examples.

Young also stressed the need for a firmer response from France and Germany to Russia’s actions.

Contact reporter Brandon at or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

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Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.