Loading...

Bipartisan Senate Bill Seeks to Help Restore Democracy in Venezuela

April 5, 2019 by Sean Trambley
Los venezolanos, ya agobiados por una tasa de inflación de más de dos millón por ciento, ahora son golpeados por el colapso del servicio eléctrico e interrupciones en el suministro de agua. (FEDERICO PARRA/GETTY TNS)

This week, a bipartisan group of Senators led by Senator Bob Menendez, D-N.J., ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Senator Marco Rubio, R-Fla., introduced new comprehensive legislation to help restore democracy and address the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela.

The most comprehensive effort to date to confront the crisis in Venezuela, the Venezuela Emergency Relief, Democracy Assistance and Development (VERDAD) Act drastically increases humanitarian assistance, expands current tools to address kleptocracy, formally recognizes and supports the Interim President of Venezuela’s efforts to restore democracy and prosperity in the country, and accelerates planning with international financial institutions to advance the country’s post-Maduro reconstruction.

“As Maduro’s recalcitrant regime continues to stumble towards the total collapse of Venezuela, the United States Congress is coming together in a bipartisan manner to put teeth behind our support for the Venezuelan people as they seek to restore democracy and address a humanitarian catastrophe of unprecedented proportions in our hemisphere,” Menendez said. “The VERDAD Act provides the Trump Administration with the necessary diplomatic tools to move beyond presidential promises towards a substantive and peaceful strategy that allows Venezuelans to protect their human rights, advance their democratic values, and end the nightmare that has been the Maduro reign of terror.”

“As Maduro and his gang of narco-terrorists thugs continue holding the Venezuelan people hostage under their failed socialist regime, the United States Senate is sending a clear bi-partisan message by introducing the VERDAD Act (Venezuela Emergency Relief, Democracy Assistance, and Development Act),” Rubio said. “This legislation will offer needed humanitarian assistance and support for Venezuela’s long path to democratic order.”  

Key elements of the legislation include:

  • Expressed support for Venezuela’s interim president and recognition of the Venezuelan National Assembly. The bill also establishes U.S. policy to pursue a peaceful, diplomatic solution to the Venezuelan crisis.
  • Authorizes $400 million of new humanitarian assistance.
  • Prohibits granting and mandates revocation of visas for the family members of sanctioned individuals and establishes a waiver with conditions to lift visa restrictions.
  • Removes sanctions on designated individuals not involved in human rights abuse if they recognize Venezuela’s Interim President.
  • Requires the State Department to work with Latin American and European governments to implement their own sanctions.
  • Requires the Departments of State, Treasury and Justice to lead international efforts to freeze, recover, and repurpose the corrupt financial holdings of Venezuelan officials.
  • Accelerates planning with international financial institutions on the economic reconstruction of Venezuela, contingent upon the restoration of democratic governance.

The legislation was cosponsored by Dick Durbin, D-Ill., Ted Cruz, R-Texas, Ben Cardin, D-Md., John Cornyn, R-Texas, Tim Kaine, D-Va., Todd Young, R-Ind., Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., Lindsey Graham, R-S.C.,Michael Bennet, D-Colo., John Barrasso, R-Wyo., Chris Coons, D-Del., Bill Cassidy, R-La., and Josh Hawley R-Mo.

A summary of the VERDAD Act can be found here and the full text can be found here.

A+
a-

December 3, 2021
by Dan McCue
White House Correspondents’ Association Prepping for Annual Dinner Return in 2022

WASHINGTON — The White House Correspondents’ Association is laying the groundwork for the return of its annual dinner in 2022,... Read More

WASHINGTON — The White House Correspondents’ Association is laying the groundwork for the return of its annual dinner in 2022, after COVID-19 and related public gathering restrictions forced the cancellation of the past two events. The upcoming WHCA dinner will be held at the Washington Hilton... Read More

December 3, 2021
by Dan McCue
Second Major Wind Farm Approved Off US Coastline

WASHINGTON — Federal regulators have signed off on a proposal to build a wind farm off the coast of Rhode... Read More

WASHINGTON — Federal regulators have signed off on a proposal to build a wind farm off the coast of Rhode Island. The South Fork Wind Project is the second commercial-scale, offshore wind energy project approved by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. The approximately 130 megawatt... Read More

December 3, 2021
by Reece Nations
Texas Law Prohibiting Critical Race Theory in Public Schools Goes Into Effect

SAN ANTONIO — A Texas law restricting the teaching of critical race theory principles in public schools went into effect... Read More

SAN ANTONIO — A Texas law restricting the teaching of critical race theory principles in public schools went into effect on Thursday after being enacted by Gov. Greg Abbott in June. The new law compels public school teachers to not discuss issues of controversy that encompass... Read More

December 3, 2021
by Tom Ramstack
Top Defense Dept. Official Wins Order Delaying Lawsuit Over Security Breach

WASHINGTON — A federal judge in Washington has set a deadline for next week seeking information in a top Defense... Read More

WASHINGTON — A federal judge in Washington has set a deadline for next week seeking information in a top Defense Department official's lawsuit over why she was released from her job after first losing her security clearance. Katie Arrington oversaw cybersecurity for defense contractors when she... Read More

December 3, 2021
by Dan McCue
Ethics Panel to Investigate Illegal Contribution Charges Against Fortenberry

WASHINGTON — The House Committee on Ethics has formed a panel to determine whether Rep. Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., is guilty... Read More

WASHINGTON — The House Committee on Ethics has formed a panel to determine whether Rep. Jeff Fortenberry, R-Neb., is guilty of accepting illegal campaign contributions, this on the heels of the Justice Department filing criminal charges against the nine-term congressman. Rep. Susan Wild, D-Penn., will serve... Read More

December 3, 2021
by Reece Nations
Holiday Sales Could Be Higher Than Expected Despite Supply Chain, Inflation Woes

WASHINGTON — Holiday shopping appears to be on track to beat out the National Retail Federation’s spending forecast in spite... Read More

WASHINGTON — Holiday shopping appears to be on track to beat out the National Retail Federation’s spending forecast in spite of continued supply chain impediments, rising inflation and the omicron variant. Holiday retail sales for November and December are now expected to exceed last year’s marks... Read More

News From The Well
Exit mobile version