What Happened: U.S. Sen. Rand Paul traveled to Moscow Aug. 6 for an unofficial visit with Russian lawmakers, whom he invited to visit Washington, The Washington Post reported.
Why It Matters: The issue of Russian election meddling remains a major issue in the U.S. Congress ahead of midterm elections, and such visits can potentially influence negotiations over U.S. sanctions between U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Background: A group of U.S. lawmakers led by Sen. Richard Shelby visited Russia just before Trump and Putin's meeting in Helsinki. In addition, the respective security councils of the United States and Russia have agreed to hold regular consultations.
- U.S., Russia: What to Make of the Trump-Putin Summit in Helsinki (July 16, 2018)
- A Defiant Russia Builds Barriers to U.S. Sanctions (May 29, 2018)
- With CAATSA, the U.S. is Trying to Make Russia Hurt (May 28, 2018)