The legislation was originally framed as a tit-for-tat response to the Magnitsky Act, a US measure signed into law by President Obama earlier this month that aims to punish officials connected to the 2009 prison death of Russian whistle-blowing lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. But the Russian legislation has been amended beyond recognition by hard-line lawmakers and now looks like a shotgun law to punish US citizens who become involved in almost any kind of non-business activity in Russia.
Many experts think that Putin may yet act as the "voice of reason" and strip the ban on adoption out of the bill before he signs it.
"This whole discussion over the adoption ban has served the purpose of shifting public attention from the corrupt Russian officials targeted under the US Magnitsky Act to the problems of orphans and the dangers they face in foreign homes," says Nikolai Petrov, an expert with the Moscow Carnegie Center.
"It's perfectly possible that Putin will ultimately adjust the adoption ban, but leave in place many of the other tough measures in this bill that haven't gotten much attention," Mr. Petrov says. Those measures include even harsher restrictions that would prevent any US passport holder from holding a leadership post in any Russian organization that is deemed by authorities to engage in politics.