U.S. lawmakers on both sides of the aisle spoke in support of embattled Ukraine as Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a military attack on his neighboring country early Thursday.
â€œOne person alone, Vladimir Putin, is responsible for the destruction and likely deaths that will occur from this unprovoked military incursion,â€ Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.), a member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, tweeted. â€œHe will be held accountable for these actions.â€
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), also a member of the Foreign Relations Committee, echoed the calls for strong action against Russia.
â€œThe US will stand with our Ukrainian allies, continue to provide them with arms to defend themselves, and work to counter Putin and hold accountable those responsible for this aggression,â€ Cruz tweeted.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), who ran for her partyâ€™s presidential nomination in 2020, called for unity at home and abroad.
â€œPutinâ€™s invasion of a free democracy has begun. The warnings from our Intel sources were right,â€ Klobuchar tweeted. â€œThere must now be swift sanctions and consequences worldwide.â€
Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) said the world should challenge the invasion with financial measures.
â€œRussia has a weak economy,â€ Lieu tweeted. â€œThe U.S. and our allies will target Russiaâ€™s economy with sanctions, to create the same situation that caused the Soviet Union to collapse.â€
Meanwhile, former President Donald Trump, who appeared enamored of Putin even before his presidency, praised the Russian leader.
â€œI mean, heâ€™s taking over a country for $2 worth of sanctions. Iâ€™d say thatâ€™s pretty smart,â€ Trump said in a radio interview this week.
Many of Trumpâ€™s allies, including Fox News personalities, shrugged off the conflict. Tucker Carlson suggested President Joe Biden was actually the aggressor.
In an apparent reaction to Trumpâ€™s comments, Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), one of the few anti-Trump Republicans, tweeted: â€œThere is no excuse for praising or appeasing Putin.â€
Biden, who spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Wednesday night, pledged the U.S. will impose further sanctions on Russia. Biden will meet G-7 leaders virtually on Thursday morning to coordinate the response.