Blue Dog Leadership Sends Letter to House, Senate Leadership Calling for Bipartisan, Bicameral Effort to Secure U.S. Elections

Sep 5, 2019
Press Release

WASHINGTON—Today, the Co-Chairs of the Blue Dog Coalition and the Co-Chairs of the Blue Dog Task Force on National Security, sent a letter to leadership of both parties and both chambers of Congress calling for an immediate bipartisan, bicameral effort to bring bipartisan election security legislation the floors of both chambers for a vote.

 

The letter was signed by the following: Rep. Stephanie Murphy (FL-07), Blue Dog Co-Chair for Administration, Rep. Tom O’Halleran (AZ-01), Blue Dog Co-Chair for Policy, Rep. Lou Correa (CA-46), Blue Dog Co-Chair for Communications, Rep. Anthony Brindisi (NY-22), Blue Dog Co-Chair for Whip, Rep. Kurt Schrader (OR-05), Blue Dog Co-Chair, Rep. Kendra Horn (OK-05), Co-Chair of the Blue Dog Task Force on National Security, and Rep. Jeff Van Drew (NJ-02), Co-Chair of the Blue Dog Task Force on National Security.

 

See below for the full text:

 

Dear Speaker Pelosi, Leader Hoyer, Leader McCarthy, Leader McConnell, and Leader Schumer:

 

As the leaders of a Coalition of national security-focused Democrats, we are calling on Congress to take further action to secure our elections, punish Russia for its attempts to meddle in the 2016 and 2018 elections, and deter our adversaries from meddling in future U.S. elections. This summer, the House has passed the SAFE Act, the Senate Intelligence Committee has issued a bipartisan report outlining Russia’s efforts against U.S. election infrastructure and proposing solutions that have earned bipartisan support, and leaders in the intelligence community have continued to sound the alarm that Russia and other adversaries will meddle in the 2020 election. The threat to our national security could not be more clear.

 

We are less than five months away from the start of the next federal election, and there is no time for partisan games. In a divided government, the only way we can accomplish this vital task is to put politics aside and pursue bipartisan solutions that can pass a Democratic-led House and a Republican-led Senate, and go to a Republican President’s desk for a signature. 

 

Thankfully, members of both parties in both chambers of Congress have put forward viable, bipartisan solutions that, together, can address this threat to our national security in a holistic way. These bipartisan solutions include the following: H.R. 2592, Honest Ads Act; H.R. 2135, Preventing Adversaries Internationally from Disbursing Advertising Dollars (PAID AD) Act; S. 1692, Invest in Our Democracy Act of 2019; S. 482, Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression (DASKA) Act of 2019; S. 1060, Defending Elections from Threats by Establishing Redlines (DETER) Act of 2019; S. 825, Protect Our Elections Act; H.R. 1272, Restoring Integrity to America’s Elections Act; H.R. 3529, Achieving Lasting Electoral Reforms on Transparency and Security (ALERTS) Act; S. 1328, Defending Elections against Trolls from Enemy Regimes (DETER) Act; and H.R. 1474, Strengthening Elections Through Intelligence Act.

 

Every single Member of Congress has sworn to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, both foreign and domestic. It is our sacred duty to uphold that oath to our country. As leaders of both chambers of Congress, we call on you to immediately launch a bipartisan, bicameral effort to bring these solutions and other viable ideas that have passed either chamber to the floor for a vote upon returning from the district work period.

 

A lack of action by Congress to secure our elections would embolden our adversaries and pose a danger to the national security of the United States. Americans must have confidence in the security of our country’s electoral process in order to ensure full faith in every election’s result, no matter the outcome.

 

Sincerely,

 

BACKGROUND:

 

In June, the Blue Dog Coalition released a package of legislative proposals in response to the conclusions presented in Volume I of the Mueller Report regarding Russia’s attack against the U.S. political system and attempts to interfere in the 2016 election. The solutions are based primarily on a set of 11 bills endorsed by the Coalition and have earned bipartisan support in both the House and the Senate. The Blue Dog proposal was widely praised by leaders, policy experts and policy organizations.

 

The House has already passed the SAFE Act, which requires voting systems to use individual, durable, voter-verified paper ballots, expands risk-limiting audits, and authorizes necessary funding to states to assist in securing election infrastructure. Those solutions were included in the Blue Dog Coalition’s election security proposal.  

 

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