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An S-400 surface-to-air missile launcher in Moscow, June 25. Photo: Sefa Karacan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Sens. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) asked in a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Monday to sanction Turkey for violating U.S. law by testing a Russian-made S-400 air defense system in Ankara this week.

Why it matters: The senators sent the letter a day before NATO leaders, including Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, convene for a summit in London on a myriad of pressing topics, including the risk posed by Turkey testing Russian missile systems.

Context: The U.S. removed Turkey from its F-35 stealth fighter jet program earlier this year after Turkey purchased a Russian S-400 system, which Washington fears could be used to gather intelligence on the F-35 and its weaknesses.

  • The Trump administration has held off implementing sanctions against Turkey for violating the 2017 Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act, which requires the U.S. to sanction countries trading with Russia's defense and intelligence sectors.
  • U.S. and NATO members have criticized Turkey, which has caused a number of headaches within the trans-Atlantic alliance as of late, for buying and testing the system.

What they're saying: “The time for patience has long expired," Van Hollen and Graham wrote in the letter to Pompeo. "It is time you applied the law. Failure to do so is sending a terrible signal to other countries that they can flout U.S. laws without consequence."

  • Pompeo said on July 14 that the 2017 law "requires that there be sanctions," according to TIME magazine. "And I’m confident that we will comply with the law, and President Trump will comply with the law."

The big picture: At the summit on Tuesday, leaders will have to address how to manage a country that has emerged as NATO's problem child, Axios' Jonathan Swan writes.

  • Ivo Daalder, who served as U.S. ambassador to NATO from 2009 to 2013, told Axios that "Turkey appears to have decided that its future is better assured by close alignment with Putin's Russia than with a US-led NATO."

Go deeper:

Go deeper

CDC director maintains Pfizer booster recommendation for high-risk workers

Rochelle Walensky listens during a Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee confirmation hearing in Washington, D.C. on July 20. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/The New York Times/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky on Friday reiterated her decision to go against a recommendation by a CDC advisory panel that refused to endorse booster shots for workers whose jobs put them at high risk for contracting covid.

Driving the news: "Our healthcare systems are once again at maximum capacity in parts of the country, our teachers are facing uncertainty as they walk into the classroom," Walensky said at a Friday briefing. "I must do what I can to preserve the health across our nation."

Democrats release full text of Biden's $3.5T reconciliation package

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Friday unveiled the full text of President Biden's $3.5 trillion social spending package.

Why it matters: Democrats are racing to finish negotiations and get the bill on the floor as soon as possible so Pelosi can fulfill her promises to both House centrists and progressives about the timing and sequencing of passing the party's dual infrastructure packages.

Biden pushes massive economic plan despite "stalemate"

President Biden speaking from the White House on Sept. 24. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

President Biden on Friday urged congressional Democrats to overcome differences surrounding his multi-trillion-dollar economic proposal but said he's still confident it will pass.

Why it matters: It's currently unclear how the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill and the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package will move forward with moderate and progressive Democrats in disagreement over critical portions of the legislation.

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