Senator Marsha Blackburn Has Blocked Three Election Security Bills

Gage Skidmore / CC-BY-2.0 / Flickr


One of the bills would have banned voting machines from being connected to the internet.

Earlier this year, Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) blocked three election security bills put forth by Democratic Senator Mark Warner (VA), including one that would prevent voting machines from being connected to the internet.

  • Axios reported in February that Blackburn called the bills a “federal power grab” at the time.
  • The news outlet noted that the week prior to its report, “the third volume of a bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee report found that the U.S. government was ‘not well-postured’ to counter Russian interference in 2016.”
  • “The Democratic-controlled House passed several election security bills last year, but none have been taken up by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.),” the report continued.
  • Two of the bills Blackburn blocked “would require campaigns to call the FBI if they're offered help from a foreign power.”
  • “Another bill would provide funding for the Election Assistance Commission and would ban voting machines from being connected to the internet,” Axios reported.

Election security advocate Jennifer Cohn noted on Twitter on Sunday that Election Systems & Software (ES&S) installed modems in Wisconsin and Florida in 2015, and more recently did so in Michigan.

ES&S was rebuked by the federal Election Assistance Commission earlier this year “over marketing materials that the panel says deceptively implied the company’s voting machines are EAC-certified,” Politico reported.

The commission admonished Election Systems & Software over promotional literature and statements on its website that appear to assert, falsely, that voting machines the company sells with embedded modems have been sanctioned by the EAC under its testing and certification program.

Read the full report.


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