Golden Votes to Protect American Elections from Foreign Interference

October 24, 2019
Press Release
The SHIELD Act — cosponsored by Golden — would strengthen protections against foreign interference in American elections and limit the spread of disinformation

WASHINGTON — To defend American elections from foreign money and influence, put a stop to the spreading of campaign disinformation, and prevent interference with voter registration, Congressman Jared Golden (ME-02) helped pass the SHIELD Act through the House today. Golden is a cosponsor of the bill. 

“We should all agree that foreign countries should not be allowed to interfere in American elections. Trust in our elections and their integrity is key for our democracy to succeed,” said Golden. “After the documented foreign interference in the 2016 election, America needs to defend itself. The SHIELD Act closes loopholes that foreign entities exploit to gain influence, shines a light on shady political advertising, and makes clear that no American can accept assistance from a foreign government. We’re working across the aisle to make sure that Mainers can trust that it's themselves, their friends, and their neighbors - not a foreign government - who elect their leaders.”

"Protecting our elections from foreign interference is an essential task for our leaders. It must not be a partisan agenda. The SHIELD Act is the kind of legislation we need. It will make critical fixes to our laws and add new protections to fight foreign influence in our democracy.” – Anna Kellar, Executive Director, Maine Citizens for Clean Elections

Among other provisions, the SHIELD Act would:

  • Require that campaigns disclose contact with a foreign agent to both the FBI and the FEC;
  • Strengthen rules and reporting requirements surrounding online advertising by campaigns;
  • Close loopholes that have allowed foreign nationals to spend in American elections;
  • Stop campaigns from communicating any non-public campaign information—like polling or opposition research—to foreign agents, and;
  • Stop campaigns from spreading disinformation or otherwise knowingly interfering with voter registration.

Golden has supported numerous bills to help strengthen American election infrastructure and make sure that Maine voters are protected from any kind of election interference. Earlier this year, Golden backed the SAFE Act, which focused on protecting election infrastructure - including both paper ballots and electronic voting systems. He is also a cosponsor of HR1, the For the People Act. The bill, the first comprehensive democracy reform and election security legislation in decades, passed the House earlier this year.