Congress concerned as tensions rise between Russia and Ukraine

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WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — As tensions rise and Russia builds up troops on its border with Ukraine, members of Congress are raising concerns.

“The Russians will take advantage of anything you leave them. If you leave a crack they’re going to get through it,” said Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Penn.).

Kelly says how the U.S. reacts will impact our standing in the world.

“Our failure to act in a very positive and a strong way causes our allies and our friends to think ‘I don’t know that we can rely on the United States,'” Kelly said.

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) is ruling out a military response.

“We’re not going to war, but we will use, if the Russians continue to do this, we’ll use sanctions,” Brown said.

And Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-N.Y.) says it’s important to keep supporting Ukraine.

“I know we’ve put $60 million worth of resources into Ukraine to defend their border,” Tenney said.

Many lawmakers agree, no matter what action is taken, it needs to be swift and direct.

“There will be significant costs, not just from the United States, but from the entire European community if [Russian President Vladimir Putin] invades sovereign Ukraine,” said Rep. Seth Moulton (D-Mass.).

Moulton says Putin shouldn’t be trusted.

“We’ve gotta be prepared for the worst.”

This week, President Joe Biden spoke directly with both Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Putin in an attempt to avoid further conflict.

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