Senate Republicans Blocked Election Security Bills For The Second Time This Year

Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA).Screengrab/NOLA.com/YouTube

JakeThomas

Bills addressing transparency in political ads and state election security were blocked by the GOP on Tuesday.

The Hill reported on Tuesday that Republican senators once again blocked bills addressing election security, one that would increase transparency for online political ads and another that would provide states with increased funding for election security.

Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) introduced the Honest Ads Act, which “would require online platforms to make ‘all reasonable efforts’ to ensure foreign entities are not buying political ads” and “require public disclosure of who paid for the ad.”

But Senate Majority Whip John Thune (R-SD) blocked the measure, saying the bill needed work to become more bipartisan. South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham was the bill’s only GOP sponsor, The Hill noted.

Next up was a bill brought by Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), whose Election Security Act “would give states $1 billion for election security efforts and require backup paper ballots.” The bill has 40 Democratic co-sponsors.

Durbin’s legislation was blocked by Senator John Kennedy (R-LA), who argued that the degree of funding was excessive given a prior allotment of $380 million for state election security.

Kennedy also decried the current federal deficit as reason to avoid spending more money on the issue.

“We had no problems in 2018,” Kennedy said, referencing the midterm elections. “If I thought for a second that our voting system was in jeopardy, I would be joining with my good friend, the senator. But I’m not much for just spending taxpayer money with a $22 trillion deficit just to be spent.”

Republicans also blocked election security bills in June, including the Election Security Act.

"We know there's a continued threat against our democracy. What we need to do now is address these facts with a common purpose, to protect our democracy, to make sure that our election systems are resilient against future attacks," Klobuchar said at the time.

Read the full report.

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