Congress has failed to pass any legislation to secure U.S. voting systems in the two years since Russia interfered in the 2016 election, a troubling setback with the midterms less than six weeks away. Lawmakers have repeatedly demanded agencies step up their efforts to prevent election meddling but in the end struggled to act themselves, raising questions about whether the U.S. has done enough to protect future elections. A key GOP senator predicted to The Hill last week that a bipartisan election security bill, seen as Congress’s best chance of passing legislation on the issue, wouldn’t pass before the midterms. And on Friday, House lawmakers left town for the campaign trail, ending any chance of clearing the legislation ahead of November. Lawmakers have openly expressed frustration they were not able to act before the 2018 elections.
… It is unclear if Congress will be any closer to overcoming the hurdles to legislation after the midterms. But advocates insist they will keep pushing for a solution.
“This is a time for unity where the country has to unite to fight off foreign meddling in our election because that undermines our democracy,” said Marian Schneider, the president of Verified Voting. But she also noted that the Lankford-Klobuchar bill was originally introduced in December 2017 and that lawmakers had months to finalize the text.
“I think there’s an unfortunate thing going on here that whenever elections is the topic or is the subject area that it becomes politicized,” she said.