Following the ongoing case exploring Russia’s role in the U.S. presidential election (including the fact that Hillary Clinton thinks Russian hacks occurred because of Vladimir Putin’s personal issues with her), the White House has announced a response regarding Russian interference. The Washington Post reports that the White House is sanctioning certain Russian entities, and will expell some Russian diplomats from the U.S. This move puts President-Elect Donald Trump in kind of a tough position—he’ll have to decide whether or not to keep these guidelines in place.
While CNN reports that Maria Zakharova, official representative for Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, called the U.S. sanctions a “hostile response” and promised that “any action against Russian diplomatic missions in the U.S. will immediately bounce back on U.S. diplomats in Russia,” Russian President Vladimir Putin decided not to respond by expelling 35 U.S. diplomats from Russia.
In a statement on the Kremlin’s website, Putin said that Russia “will plan our further steps to restore Russian-U.S. relations based on the policies of the Trump administration.”
Meanwhile, Trump said in a statement on Thursday, “It’s time for our country to move on to bigger and better things. Nevertheless, in the interest of our country and its great people, I will meet with leaders of the intelligence community next week in order to be updated on the facts of this situation.” It’s unclear what Trump’s referring to by “bigger and better things,” (maybe investigating the millions of people he alleges voted illegally in the election?) but he’s definitely not on the same page as the rest of the Republican party on this one. Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell both said they agreed with the White House’s response to Russia.