Majority Leader Schumer Floor Remarks Setting Up Floor Votes On Revoking Normal Trade Relations With Russia, Banning The Importation Of Russian Oil, And On Confirming The Nomination Of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson To The Supreme Court

April 6, 2022

Washington, D.C.   Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) this evening spoke in advance of setting votes on Russia and Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s nomination to the Supreme Court. Under the agreement entered, the Senate will vote on suspending normal trade relations with Russia at 10:00 AM tomorrow followed by votes on suspending energy imports from Russia and on cloture on the nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to serve as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks:

In a few moments I will lock in an agreement on a number of important votes tomorrow.

First and foremost, we have reached an agreement for the Senate to conclude the confirmation process of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson tomorrow. We will hold a cloture vote tomorrow morning at approximately 11:00 AM, and the final vote on her confirmation is on track to take place around 1:45 tomorrow afternoon, depending on how many members wish to speak.

It will be a joyous day: joyous for the Senate, joyous for the Supreme Court, joyous for America.  While we still have a long way to go, America tomorrow will take a giant step to becoming a more perfect nation.

I will have more to say on this historic occasion tomorrow, but for now I wish to thank my Senate colleagues for working together to advance and finalize this historic nomination to the Supreme Court.

Second, I will also lock in an agreement to hold a series of votes on PNTR and the oil ban tomorrow.

After many rounds of negotiations with Republicans, we have reached important and crucial breakthrough: this agreement clears the path to finally approve legislation that will strip Russia of permanent normal trade relations with the United States. And it will also allow the Senate to take separate action on an oil ban proposal, as we originally sought.

These proposals both have the support of the White House and it’s a big, big deal that we are finally getting them done.

I wish this could have happened sooner, but after weeks of talks with the other side it’s important that we have found a path forward to get PNTR done on a bipartisan basis. And I want to sincerely thank Senator Crapo, who worked in good faith with us together, and we wouldn’t have reached this outcome without his diligence and good faith.

Putin must absolutely be held accountable for the detestable, despicable war crimes he is committing against Ukraine: the images we have seen coming out of that country, especially out of the town of Bucha, are just pure evil. It reminds us of the worst moments in human history, caused by the evil man, Putin. Hundreds of civilians murdered in cold blood. Men, women, children, the elderly, the defenseless; people with hands tied behind their backs and left dead on the streets; civilians shot in the back of the head; all for one reason: they're Ukrainians, one despicable reason. This is genocide. When we murder wantonly innocent civilians because of who they are, whether it be their religion, their race, or their nationality, that is genocide, and Mr. Putin is guilty of it.

Formally revoking normal trade relations with Russia is precisely the right thing for the Senate to do, because it will land another huge blow to Putin’s economy. It’s a key part of any strategy for holding Putin accountable for his savage attacks on innocent civilians.

Again, I thank all of my colleagues for their good work and look forward to passing PNTR in the Senate tomorrow morning.

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