The First Bill By Democrats Will Be A Democracy Reform Package

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Issues addressed by the Democratic bill include automatic voter registration, the Voting Rights Act and gerrymandering.

When Democrats take control of the House in January, the first item on their legislative agenda is to shore up America’s democratic processes, according to NPR.

Those measures include implementing automatic voter registration; reinvigorating the Voting Rights Act,which was gutted by a 2013 Supreme Court ruling; and ending politicians’ ability to gerrymander congressional districts by taking the responsibility from state legislators and handing it to independent commissions.

Party leaders say the first legislative vote in the House will come on H.R. 1, a magnum opus of provisions that Democrats believe will strengthen U.S. democratic institutions and traditions.

"It's three very basic things that I think the public wants to see," said Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.), who spearheads campaign finance and government ethics efforts for the House Democratic Caucus. He said H.R. 1 will "demonstrate that we hear that message loud and clear."

But even Sarbanes admits the quick vote is just a first step. Republicans, who control the Senate, are unlikely to pass the bill and President Trump is unlikely to sign it. "Give us the gavel in the Senate in 2020 and we'll pass it in the Senate," Sarbanes said. "Give us a pen in the Oval Office and we'll sign those kinds of reforms into law."

Other elements of the bill address the influence of money in politics and close loopholes in government ethics law — as well as making it a requirement that presidential candidates disclose their tax returns.

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