Time for Billionaires and Companies to Spend Money to Protect Democracy and Make Elections Secure
by Bob Schwartz
House GOP refuses to renew election security funding
House Republicans on Thursday approved a spending bill that excludes new money for election security grants to states, provoking a furious reaction from Democrats amid a national controversy over Russian election interference.
The spending bill passed 217-199. Democrats’ bid to add hundreds of millions more in election spending was rejected 182-232 — as Republicans were unmoved by Democrats floor speeches decrying the funding changes and chanting “USA! USA!”
At issue is a grants program overseen by the federal Election Assistance Commission and aimed at helping states administer their elections and improve voting systems; Democrats want to continue grant funding through 2019, while Republicans say the program already has been fully funded.
A number of Republicans, especially in Congress, no longer seem to believe in democracy, because they do not want to risk losing on a level playing field. That is precisely the reason that Trump accepted (or solicited) Putin’s help in winning his election, and why Republicans now worry about helping states make elections fair and secure.
That’s why American billionaires and companies should step in and fund state election security, since the Trump-run government apparently won’t. This isn’t a controversial or partisan matter; it is an American matter. These billionaires and companies can and should offer assistance in many ways—all of which require millions of dollars, all of which these people and companies have.
How could any American billionaire or company find the funding of secure and fair elections objectionable? Even if it sometimes seems that some do.