Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong support of the SHIELD ACT. I helped introduce this legislation and the House will consider it on the floor later today.
This bill will protect our country from foreign interference in our elections.
Russia’s assault on our democracy in 2016 exposed gaps in our nation’s defenses.
It used to be that the primary threat from adversary nations was their potential use of traditional weapons of war.
But our society is rapidly changing, and so is the nature of conflict. Today, our enemies are more likely to use computer malware than cruise missiles to do us harm.
And they won’t think twice about exploiting loopholes in our laws in order to influence our elections.
That’s why passing the SHIELD Act is so critical to maintaining the foundation of our democracy—our system of free and fair elections.
We know Russia, and possibly other foreign powers, will likely use similar tactics in 2020. And why wouldn’t they? Russia suffered almost no consequences for their actions in 2016.
While Russia assisted a Republican on that occasion, it could aid a Democrat in the future.
That’s because Moscow’s loyalty is to itself, not to any U.S. political party. My colleagues on the other side of the aisle should never forget that.
To defend our democracy, we need to act now to protect our elections. We need to pass the SHIELD Act.
I commend Chairwoman Lofgren for her leadership in drafting this critical piece of legislation, and I urge all my colleagues to support it.
Thank you and I yield back the balance of my time.