Biden slams Putin for suspending nuke treaty, Buttigieg visits rail crash site


Biden condemns Putin for suspending nuclear arms treaty, Buttigieg visits train derailment site as officials consider civil penalties, Tester running for reelection, Biden nominates Banga to head World Bank.

Biden condemns Putin for suspending nuclear arms treaty, warns US will “defend every inch” of NATO

President Joe Biden condemned Vladimir Putin’s decision on Tuesday to suspend his nation’s participation in the last arms-control treaty between Russia and the United States.

In a state-of-the-nation address to the Russian people, Putin said Russia was withdrawing from the treaty because of American support to Ukraine, and he accused the US and its allies in NATO of openly working to destroy Russia, the Associated Press reported.

President Biden signed a 5-year extension of the New START treaty when he took office, after the US previously walked away during the Trump administration, which accused Moscow of flagrant violations.

After a four-day visit to Poland and Ukraine, Biden was asked about Russia’s decision to withdraw and called the move a “big mistake.” He also added, “We will defend literally every inch of NATO,” he told leaders from the Bucharest Nine, a collection of nations in the most eastern parts of the NATO alliance, the Daily Mail reported.

Buttigieg visits train derailment site as officials consider civil penalties over toxic spill

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg visited East Palestine, Ohio, on Thursday, touring the site where a train derailed nearly three weeks ago.

Buttigieg’s visit comes as the federal government faces growing criticism over its response to the toxic disaster, which led to evacuations amid fears of air and water contamination following a controlled burn of toxic chemicals that was aimed at preventing an explosion, NBC Philadelphia reported.

The Biden administration is considering levying civil penalties against freight railroad Norfolk Southern, as well as potentially issuing a legally binding order ensuring the company pays for cleanup costs associated with the toxic derailment, senior officials told reporters, Politico reported.

Tester running for reelection in Montana, helping Democrats with key seat for Senate majority

Democrats are issuing a collective sigh of relief in terms of retaining a key seat for the Senate majority after Montana Senator Jon Tester (D) announced on Wednesday that he will seek reelection for a fourth term, The Hill reported.

“I am running for re-election so I can keep fighting for Montanans and demand that Washington stand up for our veterans and lower costs,” Tester said. “Montanans need a fighter holding Washington accountable and I’m running to defend our Montana values.”

Biden nominates former MasterCard CEO Banga to head World Bank

President Joe Biden now has the opportunity to define the role of the World Bank after nominating Ajay Banga, the former CEO of Mastercard, to lead the World Bank. Current World Bank president David Malpass announced he will be stepping down a year early.

“[Banga is] uniquely equipped to lead the World Bank at this critical moment in history,” Biden said in a statement after announcing the nomination on Thursday.

The opening gives President Biden the opportunity to select someone who embraces the goal of focusing more on climate and other global challenges in what will be a fundamental overhaul of the World Bank’s work, Politico reported.