‘We have to stand up:’ US govs impose sanctions on Russia

A father hugs his daughter as the family reunite after fleeing conflict in Ukraine, at the Medyka border crossing, in Poland, Sunday, Feb. 27, 2022. Since Russia launched its offensive on Ukraine, more than 200,000 people have been forced to flee the country to bordering nations like Romania, Poland, Hungary, Moldova, and the Czech Republic in what the U.N. refugee agency, UNHCR, said will have "devastating humanitarian consequences" on civilians. (AP Photo/Visar Kryeziu) (Visar Kryeziu, Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Some U.S. governors are taking matters into their own hands and imposing their own economic sanctions on Russia for invading Ukraine.

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on Sunday asked the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board to remove Russian-sourced products from stores in the commonwealth. He said the board has already identified Russian-sourced products currently being sold at Fine Wine & Good Spirits stores and urged for sales to cease as quickly as possible, WPXI-TV reported.

The board later responded that all Russian-made products will be removed from the stores' shelves as a show of solidarity and support for the people of Ukraine.

According to KDVR-TV, Gov. Jared Polis of Colorado on Thursday directed his state’s Office of Information Technology and the Department of Personnel and Administration to look through current state contracts to see if there are any Russian state-owned companies currently doing business with Colorado. Any found will be terminated.

On Saturday, Gov. Glenn Youngkin, of Virginia, ordered the Department of General Services to review all contracts to determine whether any state tax dollars were being spent on goods and services from primarily Russian companies, WRIC-TV reported.

Youngkin requested that the Norfolk Sister City Association, a non-profit citizen diplomacy organization, immediately end its relationship with Kaliningrad, Russia.

The Virginia Retirement System Board of Trustees and university endowment funds were also called to divest any and all holdings of the Russian ruble and any and all securities of Russian companies.

“I think we have to stand up and take every ounce of economic sanctions we haven’t used, and we need the international community to come up with this and it’s a big moment for the international community to stand up and say we won’t allow this,” said Youngkin at an event earlier this week in Hampton.

KXAN-TV reported that Texas Gov. Greg Abbott asked members of the Texas Restaurant Association, Texas Package Stores Association and Texas retailers to “voluntarily remove all Russian products from their shelves.”

Elsewhere around the country, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine directed the state’s Commerce Department to cease the purchase and sale of Russian Standard, the only Russian vodka sold in Ohio (under the brand names Green Mark and Russian Standard). New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu signed an executive order requiring state liquor outlets to remove Russian-made and branded alcohol, as did Utah Gov. Spencer Cox.