GOP plan would ban illegal immigrants voting, mandate photo ID, election audits
By Paul Bedard
Eager to take charge after the fall elections, Republicans are readying a voting reform package that would rewrite the rules in time for the 2024 election and reverse liberalized balloting pushed by Democrats.
The “American Confidence In Elections Act” would junk the Democrat plan to end key balloting protections, crack down on illegal migrants voting, pull back expansive voting procedures and restore states as the election authority.
The top goals of the ACE Act, according to documents provided to Secrets:
- “States have the primary role in establishing election law and administering elections.”
- “All eligible voters must be able to vote, and all lawful votes must be counted.”
- “Political speech is protected speech and all voices—including conservative voices—must be protected.”
Among the demands are photo identification, curbing the use of so-called “Zuckerbucks,” or outside funding by election officials, election auditing, and ending same-day registration, ballot harvesting, and automatically mailed ballots.
House Administration Ranking Member Rep. Rodney Davis has been in charge of the project, meeting with over 100 members, all of which he’s seeking to sign up as co-sponsors of the ACE Act.
He and his team have also been reaching out to elections experts around the country to win support.
Lee Goodman, a former GOP Federal Election Commission chairman, told Secrets that the plan would bring in more voters looking for greater confidence in the system criticized after the 2020 election.
“Representative Davis’ new bill is a perfect antidote to the decline in confidence in our elections,” said Goodman who called it “populist” legislation.
“The bill contains very important reforms to campaign finance laws that hurt our democracy. The bill would reverse the stranglehold McCain-Feingold imposed on state and local political parties, the most populist political organizations in our democratic process, and free citizen speech on the internet. There’s also an important provision protecting the editorial decisions of old and new media from censorship and it puts citizens on a level playing field when they discuss politics on the internet,” he said.
The new package is the GOP alternative to S.R. 1 and H.R. 1, the liberal election law changes pushed by Democrats and challenged in several states. While those proposals greatly broadened the federal government’s involvement in elections, the GOP plan proposes to shorten Washington’s reach and firm up ballot security without limiting access.