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Potentially Good Ideas Buried in HR1

Accepted submission by The Mighty Buzzard at 2019-01-06 12:50:21 from the stopped clock dept.

Securityweek has a look at the bits of HR1 with digital election security implications [] running:

The Democrat-controlled House of Representatives has unveiled its first Bill: HR1, dubbed the 'For the People Act'. It has little chance of getting through the Republican-controlled Congress, and even less chance of being signed into law by President Trump.

Nevertheless, HR1 lays down a marker for current Democrat intentions; and it is likely that some of the potentially bi-partisan elements could be spun out into separate bills with a greater chance of progress.

One of these is likely to include the section on election security. This has been a major issue since the meddling by Russian-state hackers in the 2016 presidential election, and the subsequent realization on how easy it would be for interested parties (both foreign hackers and local activists) to influence election outcomes.

I'm all for secure and accountable elections but the feds are going to need to be careful and deliberate in what they mandate vs. what they place conditions for funding on. They have do have significant authority as far as election laws go but their power is more deep than broad; most specifics are legally up to the states. Just because something is a good idea doesn't mean they currently have the legal authority necessary to do it.

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