WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Rep. Hank Johnson (GA-04) voted to pass H.R. 4617, the Stopping Harmful Interference in Elections for a Lasting Democracy (SHIELD) Act. This strong, commonsense legislation takes decisive and bipartisan steps to fight foreign interference in our elections by strengthen reporting requirements, closing loopholes and deterring foreign activity in U.S. elections. Its passage builds on the bold action House Democrats took to close dangerous gaps in our voting security by passing H.R. 1, the For The People Act, and H.R. 2722, the Securing America’s Federal Elections (SAFE) Act, earlier this year.
“Voters in Georgia and across America elected a Congress committed to upholding the Constitution and protecting the integrity of our elections,” said Rep. Johnson. “The Intelligence Community unanimously determined that, in 2016, the Russian government attacked U.S. elections in ‘sweeping and systemic fashion,’ and that foreign adversaries continue to seek pathways to undermine our national security and our democracy. In the face of the threats that we know are coming, Congress must take every necessary step to ensure America’s elections are decided by Americans, not by hostile foreign actors.”
The SHIELD Act takes critical steps to protect our elections and our democracy:
- Creates a duty to report illicit offers of campaign assistance from foreign governments and their agents.
- Helps prevent foreign interference in future elections by improving transparency of online political advertisements.
- Closes loopholes that allow foreign nationals and foreign governments to spend in U.S. elections.
- Restricts exchange of campaign information between candidates and foreign governments and their agents.
- Prohibits deceptive practices about voting procedures.
“While I am proud to join my Democratic colleagues to uphold our oath of office and pass the SHIELD Act, it is deeply disappointing that zero Republicans voted to protect our democracy, and instead decided to protect the President instead of protecting our elections,” continued Rep. Johnson.
“Protecting the integrity of our elections and our national security are basic principles that should unite every Member of Congress. I will continue to honor the responsibility placed on me by the people of Georgia and take every action necessary to prevent foreign adversaries from undermining our democracy. There is no time to waste.”