House Speaker John Boehner said on Thursday that he was proud to be among the nine U.S. officials and lawmakers to face retaliatory sanctions from Russian President Vladimir Putin after Moscow's annexation of Crimea.
“The speaker is proud to be included on a list of those willing to stand against Putin’s aggression,” Michael Steel, a spokesman for the Ohio Republican, said in a statement.
Along with Boehner, the Russian Foreign Ministry barred these Americans from the country: deputy national security advisers Ben Rhodes and Caroline Atkinson; Republican Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Dan Coats of Indiana; Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada; and Sens. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Robert Menendez of New Jersey.
Dan Pfeiffer, a senior adviser to President Barack Obama, also faced sanctions, the ministry said.
For his part, McCain quipped
in a statement: "I guess this means my spring break in Siberia is off, my Gazprom stock is lost, and my secret bank account in Moscow is frozen. Nonetheless, I will never cease my efforts on behalf of the freedom, independence, and territorial integrity of Ukraine, including Crimea."
On Monday, Obama barred 11 Russian, Ukrainian and Crimean officials and lawmakers from the United States and froze any assets they hold there. Those listed were deemed to have been involved in what the White House said was the illegal annexation of Crimea in Ukraine.
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