Baucus wants trade bill focused on human rights violations in Russia

The House bill, which passed Nov. 16, includes identical trade language to the Senate's measure repealing the obsolete Jackson-Vanik law, a U.S. law aimed at encouraging the emigration of Russian Jews with the threat of higher tariffs. It specifically calls for denying U.S. visas and freezing the assets of Russian officials involved Magnitsky's death.

He told reporters he hoped the bill could be passed by the Senate next week and sent to President Obama for his signature. 

Sen. Ben CardinBenjamin (Ben) Louis CardinWashington puts Ethiopia's human rights abusers on notice Overnight Defense: Mattis vows Dreamers in military won't be deported | Pentagon unsure if military parade will be in Washington | Dem bill would block funds for parade Dems introduce bills to block funds for Trump's proposed parade MORE (D-Md.) said Tuesday he is still pushing for passage of his broader measure that covers violations around the globe and he may offer an amendment to the House bill. 

"I absolutely want it global but I want to make sure we get a bill," he said. 

Cardin said he has neither gotten confirmation from Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidWATCH: There is no Trump-Russia collusion and the media should stop pushing this The demise of debate in Congress ‘North by Northwest,’ the Carter Page remake MORE (D-Nev.) that the bill will come up next week nor has he discussed floor procedures for the measure. 

He is still working with his Senate co-sponsors along with House members who support a global measure, including House Ways and Means Committee ranking member Sandy Levin (D-Mich.). 

Any changes could put the bill's clearance by the end of the year in jeopardy with lawmakers already running out of time to complete a short-term package to solve looming tax and spending issues that will hit in January. 

Following passage of the House bill, the Russian Foreign Ministry vowed to retaliate although they did not outline any specifics.

Moscow joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) more than three months ago after nearly two decades of lobbying. 

The Obama administration has said it strongly supports the House-passed measure, which also normalizes trade relations with Moldova.