This photo shows a Liquor store in Las Vegas, Nevada. In response to Russia’s invasion on Ukraine on Thursday, several government officials in the U.S. have ordered or asked liquor stores, retail stores, restaurants and bars to stop the sale of Russian spirits. (Allen / Flickr)
By Jack Davis February 27, 2022 at 4:00pm
Russian products are going, going, gone as stores and bars are being urged to rid themselves of anything to do with what to many Americans believe is the foul taste of the nation that invaded Ukraine.
Republican Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas called for both substantive and symbolic actions against Russia.
“Joe Biden needs to reverse his energy policy and ban on drilling on federal lands and start certifying pipelines to get oil and gas flowing again in America. These are the steps we need to take that are full measures that recognize the full gravity of this moment, as opposed to the half measures that we’ve heard this week from President Biden and NATO,” Cotton said last week, according to Fox News.
“If you want to put real consequences on Vladimir Putin and think twice, we need to sanction his oil and gas exports,” Cotton said, a step that nations banning most of Russia’s transactions from an international banking system did not take.
Cotton also offered a symbolic way to take a stand.
“Dump all the Russian vodka and, alongside ammo and missiles, send the empty bottles to Ukraine to use for Molotov cocktails,” he tweeted.
Many other Republicans agreed.
I’ve asked the members of the Texas Restaurant Association, Texas Package Stores Association & all Texas retailers to voluntarily remove all Russian products from their shelves.
Texas stands with Ukraine.#StandWithUkraine
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) February 26, 2022
.@OhioLiquor estimates that there are approximately 6,400 bottles of vodka made by Russian Standard currently for sale in Ohio’s 487 liquor agencies across the state. Retailers have been asked to immediately pull Green Mark Vodka and Russian Standard Vodka from their shelves.
— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) February 26, 2022
This morning I signed an Executive Order instructing @nhliquorwine outlets to begin removing Russian-made and Russian-branded spirits from our liquor and wine outlets until further notice.
New Hampshire stands with the people of Ukraine in their fight for freedom. 🇺🇦
— Chris Sununu (@GovChrisSununu) February 26, 2022
Bars across the country have stopped serving Russian vodka, many switching to Ukrainian products instead.
“I hope that all Americans can agree that we support democracy and we support people have the right to determine how things are in their own country,” said Eric Gladstone, spokesman for the Evel Pie tavern in Las Vegas, which dumped its Russian vodka over the weekend, according to KSNV-TV.
Today I sent a letter to the Liquor Control Board urging them to remove Russian-sourced products from stores and cease selling them ASAP.
Pennsylvania stands in solidarity with the people of Ukraine.
— Governor Tom Wolf (@GovernorTomWolf) February 27, 2022
There was even some rare bipartisan support for bans on Russian products.
Do you support the boycott of Russian-made products?
“Like many other North Carolinians, I have been completely appalled by the unprovoked invasion of Ukraine currently underway at the hands of the Russian military. I have been searching for ways that our state government may take a stand against this egregious Russian aggression,” North Carolina Democratic state Sen. Michael Garrett wrote his state’s Alcohol Beverage Control Board, according to WGHB-TV.
“One of the most prominent Russian-made exports that Americans encounter is vodka. As Commissioners of the North Carolina Alcoholic Beverage Control Board, you have the power to stop sales and further wholesale purchase of Russian-made vodka indefinitely. I urge you to do this as soon as is practicable. Please take special care to ensure non-Russian vodka, especially those made in North Carolina and this country, are not banned,” he wrote.
“While this move may seem small and symbolic, I believe that stopping the sale of Russian-made vodka in North Carolina will show the world where the residents of our state stand when it comes to the outrageous and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.”