Democrats Prioritize Campaign Finance Overhaul with ‘For the People Act’

Jan 21, 2021
In The News

Congressional Democrats are prioritizing campaign finance reform and voting rights with a sweeping bill being praised by progressive groups and advocates for electoral reform. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) announced Tuesday that the upper chamber will consider the For the People Act before any other bill, designating it as S.1. Democrats in the House made a similar move earlier this month. The bill aims to tackle corporate influence, “dark money,” foreign attempts to influence American elections and voter suppression practices in the wake of the 2020 election cycle, which broke campaign spending records. Harvard Law Professor Lawrence Lessig, who has written extensively on the topic of campaign finance, called the bill “an incredibly important piece of comprehensive democracy reform,” in an email to OpenSecrets.... Congress’ decision to prioritize the bill also comes eight months after the death of Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), a storied voting rights advocate and civil rights leader who authored the original For the People Act in 2019 along with Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.). The proposed law aims to make the purging of voter rolls illegal, protecting voters from being unregistered if they do not meet certain arbitrary thresholds. It would also institute nationwide voter registration practices, including automatic, same-day and online voter registration.