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SHIELD Act Election Security Package Passes House, Includes Phillips Firewall Act

WASHNGTON, DC – Today, the House of Representatives passed the SHIELD Act (Stopping Harmful Interference in Elections for A Lasting Democracy Act). The comprehensive election security package includes Rep. Dean Phillips’s (MN-03) Firewall Act, which prevents foreign interference in U.S. elections by prohibiting foreign nationals from paying for online advertisements created to attack or support federal candidates.

“There is no question that foreign adversaries interfered in our previous elections – and they’re planning to do it again,” said Phillips. “These threats are urgent, they are real, and they are entirely preventable. It’s time for members of Congress to put politics aside and stand together to protect the sanctity of our elections from those who seek to divide, discourage, and disinform the American electorate.”

In addition to Phillips’s Firewall Act, the SHIELD Act:

  • Includes an enormously popular provision that would require political campaigns, parties, and PACs to report offers of unlawful campaign assistance by a foreign government to the FBI and FEC.
  • Improves transparency of online political advertisements by establishing disclosure rules that guard against foreign interference.
  • Prohibits foreign nationals from participating in decision-making about contributions or expenditures by corporations, PACS, Super PACs, and other entities.
  • Restricts exchange of campaign information between candidates and foreign governments and their agents.
  • Prohibits spreading false information about voting rules.

Phillips spoke at a press conference announcing the SHIELD Act this morning. A video of the press conference is available here.

Rep. Phillips spoke on the House Floor today to urge his colleagues to support the SHIELD Act and Firewall Act.

Phillips Speaks In Support of SHIELD Act Election Security Package

Click here to watch Phillips’s remarks.

Below are Phillips’s remarks as prepared:

Madam Speaker –

People in small towns and cities in my home state of Minnesota and in neighborhoods all across the nation are being targeted for manipulation.

Foreign governments have found a weakness in our national security. They are using social media platforms to influence Americans with the hope they’ll vote in favor of foreign interests – not American interests.

Democrats and Republicans need to come together – now – today – to do something about it. It is what our founders: Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison and others would have demanded!

I am proud to support the SHIELD Act - important legislation that includes my bill, the Firewall Act, to prevent foreign nationals from paying for online political advertisements.

I urge my colleagues to support this historic and necessary package – and help us build a wall, a digital wall, to protect Americans from foreign interference in our elections.