Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) revealed on Monday that the Russian government has officially denied him a visa to travel to the country as part of a bipartisan congressional delegation.
Johnson, who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Subcommittee on Europe and Regional Security Cooperation was scheduled to meet with a variety of Russian officials and civil organizations, but was ultimately barred from entering the country over legislation that he sponsored aiming to “hold Russia accountable for its aggression to Ukraine.”
“The path [Russian President] Vladimir Putin has chosen for Russia is a tragedy of historic proportions. Instead of holding free and fair elections, respecting the rule of law, and integrating Russia’s economy with Western democracies, Putin has invaded Georgia, attempted to illegally annex Crimea, conducted war in eastern Ukraine where thousands have died, and supported a barbaric regime in Syria that has used chemical weapons on its own people in a war that has resulted in the deaths of hundreds of thousands,” Johnson said in a statement.
“Eventually, a new generation of leaders will emerge in Russia. Working with [United States] Ambassador Huntsman, I had hoped direct dialogue with Russian parliamentarians could help set the stage for better future relations between our two nations,” he continued. “Unfortunately, Russian officials continue to play diplomatic games with this sincere effort and have denied me entrance to Russia. Regardless of this petty affront, I will continue to advocate a strong and resolute response to Russian aggression – and frank dialogue when possible.”
Russia’s decision to deny entry to Johnson comes only two weeks after Israel ignited a media firestorm by blocking Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Ilhan Omar (D-MN) from entering the Jewish state.
Both far-left congresswomen have been intensely critical of Israel, even introducing legislation promoting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. BDS is considered by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) to be “the most prominent effort to undermine Israel’s existence,” and the Israeli Knesset consequently passed an anti-BDS law in 2017 that blocks foreign activists from gaining entry into the country.
Following Israel’s decision to bar the freshmen duo, Democratic lawmakers and members of the left-wing media slammed Israel. Both Tlaib and Omar subsequently attacked the Jewish state for its “inhuman” treatment and further accused the country of being “oppressive” and “racist.”
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) came to the defense of her fellow “Squad” members, even going so far as to accuse Israel of discriminating against women of color.
“[Members of Congress] are frequently asked to visit Israel to ‘see things for ourselves.’ But Netanyahu choosing to ban the only [two] Muslim women in Congress from entering tells the US that only some Americans are welcome to Israel, not all,” Ocasio-Cortez said at the time. “[President Donald] Trump is exporting his bigotry [and] making matters worse.”
However, despite their outrage over Israel’s decision to block members of the United States Congress, they have remained silent on Russia’s decision to block a member of the United States Congress.
Neither Omar, Tlaib, or Ocasio-Cortez’s office responded to The Daily Wire’s request for comment.