RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — On Thursday, President Vladimir Putin announced Russia would begin military operations in Ukraine. The declaration sent the globe reeling, including Virginia lawmakers.
In a tweet sent out by Gov. Glenn Youngkin today, he called Putin’s invasion “an assault on a sovereign nation.”
“We must hold Russia accountable,” Youngkin said. “And we pray for the Ukrainian people and for peace.”
Sen. Tim Kaine, similarly, released a statement condemning Putin and affirming the United States’ commitment to Ukraine. “Make no mistake,” Kaine said. “Russia’s aggression will continue to have significant consequences, including through additional crippling economic sanctions.”
Kaine spoke to 8News yesterday, where he revealed that more sanctions would most likely be discussed when senators return to Washington next week.
“There’s additional sanctions we haven’t yet imposed,” Kaine explained. “Particularly sanctions that would essentially shut the Russian economy out of the Western banking system. Those would really have punishing effects not only in the Russian economy but on some of the oligarchs surrounding Vladimir Putin.”
According to VCU political science professor, Dr. Chris Burdett, the United States’ unity with Ukraine will not be painless, however. Americans could expect repercussions like increased gas prices and cyber warfare.
“We may see some ripple effect as Russia attempts to remind the West that this isn’t just simply a territorial question involving Ukraine,” Burdett warned.
Gas prices are of particular worry for Randolph Macon political science professor, Dr. Thomas Badey, who explained that Russia is one of the largest oil producers in the world.
“Uncertainty yields price increases,” Badey said, an issue that is compounded by the already declining oil production in the United States.
Ukraine, on the other hand, is known for steel, coal, and grain production, meaning that there could also be price hikes in products like steel and bread, according to Badey. Instabilities in the market could directly impact those with 401k plans.
Gas station owners say prices have already risen ‘tremendously’ since the conflict began, and added that they get updates on pricing from the wholesaler every night at 7 p.m.
Chesterfield resident Travis Ferrell said the changes are already impacting his wallet.
“It’s a little hard on gas but I got good gas mileage in my car so I’m alright,” Ferrell said.