Like Countable?

Install the App
TRY NOW

senate Bill S. 1469

Should Conspiring With a Foreign Agent to Influence U.S. Elections Be a Federal Crime?

Argument in favor

As the Mueller report and intelligence community’s findings make clear, it’s necessary to create more protection against foreign interference in political campaigns. Making it a federal crime to conspire with foreign agents to influence U.S. elections would help deter these acts.

jimK's Opinion
···
08/08/2019
Yes it should be a crime. It should be treason. How could theft of state secrets to aid a foreign entity be treasonous and be more reprehensible than letting a foreign entity control who gets elected and who they then can effectively control as their ‘asset’ to influence legislation and state functions.
Like (180)
Follow
Share
08/08/2019
Yes. It’s treason. trump’s a traitor.
Like (98)
Follow
Share
Sherman's Opinion
···
08/09/2019
The fact that this question is up for debate is unbelievable.
Like (80)
Follow
Share

Argument opposed

The Federal Election Commission already prohibits political campaigns from accepting help from foreign nationals, so there’s no need for this bill. Additionally, continuing to obsess about what may or may not have happened in the 2016 election is harming national political discourse.

ManfromNebraska's Opinion
···
08/09/2019
You mean like Hillary did? I vote no on any Dianne Feinstein puts forth. If she wants it, it can’t be good for Conservatives!
Like (27)
Follow
Share
Lloyd's Opinion
···
08/09/2019
It's already a crime and those who would commit such an act already have enough riches to be above the law. That's how this country works. If you're poor and jaywalk, life in prison. If you're wealthy and murder a bus full of nuns, community service; and the nuns families have to pay your legal fees.
Like (10)
Follow
Share
Carmine's Opinion
···
08/09/2019
Stop the illegal witch hunt against President Trump & lock Former First Lady Clinton up!
Like (5)
Follow
Share

bill Progress


  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on the Judiciary
    IntroducedMay 14th, 2019

What is Senate Bill S. 1469?

This bill — the Prevention of Foreign Interference with Elections Act of 2019 — would make it a federal crime to conspire with a foreign agent to influence U.S. elections. Anyone found conspiring with a foreign national to interfere in an election by either committing a federal crime or breaking an election law would be sentenced to prison for up to five years in addition to the sentence for other offenses that were part of the interference. 

Additionally, this bill would also: 

  • Allow the federal government to bring civil enforcement action to stop illegal activity as soon as it is discovered; 
  • Update election laws so that foreign nationals are also prohibited from buying digital ads or issue ads (currently they are only prohibited from buying print, television or radio ads that reference specific candidates); 
  • Codify regulations that prohibit providing “substantial assistance” to foreign nationals trying to affect U.S.elections; and 
  • Make those convicted of election interference inadmissible into the U.S. unless they are coming to assist in prosecutions as witnesses or informants.

Impact

Political campaigns; candidates for political; federal government civil enforcement action against foreign actors seeking to interfere in U.S. elections; U.S. Code; foreign governments; and foreign governments seeking to interfere in U.S. elections.

Cost of Senate Bill S. 1469

A CBO cost estimate is unavailable.

More Information

In-DepthSen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) introduced this bill to help combat foreign election interference:  

“There’s no question that Russia worked with Americans – unwitting or otherwise – to influence U.S. elections. Even though such activity is already illegal, those laws can and should be stronger. This bill not only clarifies that conspiring with foreign nationals to influence U.S. elections is illegal, it closes loopholes that allow foreign nationals to buy ads intended to directly influence elections. Allowing foreign actors to sway our elections is unacceptable and this bill will help ensure that law enforcement has the tools necessary to combat bad actors.”

After President Donald Trump said in June 2019 that he would accept a foreign adversary’s assistance in an election, Sen. Feinstein said the president’s statement underscored the need for this bill

“President Trump’s comments that he would accept help from Russia or another foreign adversary to win reelection are outrageous. The law is very clear in this area. ‘It shall be unlawful for a foreign national, directly or indirectly, to make a contribution or donation of money or other thing of value … in connection with a federal, state or local election (52 USC 30121).’ Providing opposition research, as the president calls it, is a valuable contribution to a campaign. It’s comments like this that show why the bill I introduced last month, the Prevention of Foreign Interference with Elections Act, is so important and deserves a hearing and a vote. The bill makes crystal clear that working with foreign nationals to influence U.S. elections is an illegal act. It also closes loopholes that let foreign nationals buy online campaign ads in order to influence U.S. elections. We must not let foreign powers influence our elections. Our bill makes that clear and strengthens the law to ensure it won’t happen again.”

Original cosponsor Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) adds

“Ongoing Russian attacks against our democracy demand that our election laws be fortified. The Prevention of Foreign Interference with Elections Act makes clear that working with a foreign agent to influence elections is a federal crime. Our bill clarifies existing law to give Americans full confidence that the ads they see online, in print, and on TV have not been put there by a tyrant trying to destabilize our country, but by their fellow citizens who have a common interest in electing representatives who will do what is best for the nation.”

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) has championed this bill along with three others addressing election security. The other bills Sen. Schumer has expressed support for are: 

  • A revised version of the Election Security Act tracking with House-passed legislation, sponsored by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN); 
  • The DETER Act, sponsored by Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD); and
  • DASKA, sponsored by Sens. Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Cory Gardner (R-CO), Ben Cardin (D-MD), and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH). 

In contrast to Sen. Schumer, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has refused to bring election security legislation to the Senate floor for votes. Similarly, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has argued that it’s time for the U.S. to “turn the page” on the 2016 election, and it cannot do so if it dwells on the topics of collusion or election interference. At a July press conference, McCathy said

“It is time that America turns the page. It is time for America to move forward. The Democrats have to stop wasting time and trying to have a do over of the 2016 presidential election. For more than two years Democrats have obsessed about the Muller investigation, going as far as falsely accusing that they had evidence of collusion, which we found not to be true today. What we heard today only helped to reinforce the facts that there is no collusion and there is no obstruction.”

Observing the partisan divide on election security issues, Inside Cybersecurity’s Charlie Mitchell expresses pessimism about this legislation’s odds of passage. He writes, “it seems to be getting increasingly difficult to view anything election-security related through a nonpartisan lens.”

This legislation has 11 Democratic cosponsors


Of NoteIn January 2017, the U.S. intelligence community issued a report concluding that the Russian government interfered in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. This was confirmed by Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation and subsequent report. The special counsel also warned that the Russians will be back in 2020 and said “much more needs to be done” to counter foreign influence in U.S. elections. 

There is currently no criminal law explicitly prohibiting foreign actors from interfering in U.S. elections


Media:

Summary by Lorelei Yang

(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / cmannphoto)

AKA

Prevention of Foreign Interference with Elections Act of 2019

Official Title

A bill to amend title 18, United States Code, to prohibit interfering in elections with agents of a foreign government.

    Yes it should be a crime. It should be treason. How could theft of state secrets to aid a foreign entity be treasonous and be more reprehensible than letting a foreign entity control who gets elected and who they then can effectively control as their ‘asset’ to influence legislation and state functions.
    Like (180)
    Follow
    Share
    You mean like Hillary did? I vote no on any Dianne Feinstein puts forth. If she wants it, it can’t be good for Conservatives!
    Like (27)
    Follow
    Share
    IT ISN’T ALREADY?!?!?
    Like (109)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes. It’s treason. trump’s a traitor.
    Like (98)
    Follow
    Share
    The fact that this question is up for debate is unbelievable.
    Like (80)
    Follow
    Share
    One of the many reasons Trump should be impeached.
    Like (59)
    Follow
    Share
    Of course.....why is this even a question.
    Like (50)
    Follow
    Share
    Damn right it should be a crime, DJT should be in prison. Also why is it that a sitting president cannot be indicted ? That means the president is above the law. Nobody is above the law. If the president kills someone, is he or she charged for murder or not ?
    Like (47)
    Follow
    Share
    Yes,with a death penalty for treason
    Like (43)
    Follow
    Share
    Anyone that would refuse a vote on this bill intended to protect the vote no matter who it is cast for is not putting country first. If Mitch refuses to allow a vote then it is time to take his seat and send him home. Time for leadership to fill the current void.
    Like (40)
    Follow
    Share
    This is what Trump gets for being a traitor to the nation and undermining our democracy.
    Like (34)
    Follow
    Share
    Treasonous fools deserve hard time.
    Like (27)
    Follow
    Share
    Clearly yes from both sides of the isle.
    Like (22)
    Follow
    Share
    This should be self evident
    Like (17)
    Follow
    Share
    It should be treason.
    Like (17)
    Follow
    Share
    Senate Bill S-1469 “Prevention of Foreign Interference with Elections Act” I support and recommend the immediate passage of the Senate Bill S-1469 AKA the “Prevention of Foreign Interference with Elections Act of 2019” which would make it a federal crime to conspire with a foreign agent to influence U.S. elections. Anyone found conspiring with a foreign national to interfere in an election by either committing a federal crime or breaking an election law would be sentenced to prison for up to five years in addition to the sentence for other offenses that were part of the interference. As the Mueller report and intelligence community’s findings make clear, it’s necessary to create more protection against foreign interference in political campaigns. Making it a federal crime to conspire with foreign agents to influence U.S. elections would help deter these acts. SneakyPete..... 👍🏻👍🏻S-1469👍🏻👍🏻. 8.8.10.....
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    YES! LOCK HER UP!
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    You mean it isn’t already considered treason?!?
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    It should be treason.
    Like (16)
    Follow
    Share
    Lock up all the Democrats who conspired with Great Britain, Italy, and possibly other allies, not to mention Russia to foment a disinformation campaign to stop a candidate from being elected and overthrow said candidate if elected. I have little faith many will be indicted, prosecuted for this coup attempt, only low hanging fruit will see any prison time. There has been a 2 tiered system since our founding; those with influence, those with money, those with power or powerful friends usually get away with anything while us little folks have no recourse. #MAGA
    Like (13)
    Follow
    Share
    MORE