Rep. Smith Statement on Passage of H.R. 1, Historic Voting Rights, Anti-Corruption and Democracy Reform Bill
March 3, 2021
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representative Adam Smith (D-Wash.) released the following statement today after the House passed H.R. 1, the For the People Act, a package to protect and expand voting rights, restore integrity to government, and democracy reform put the needs and priorities of the American people ahead of special interests.
“Today, I voted with House Democrats to answer the call from the American people to restore our democracy with a broad package of reforms to take on campaign finance regulations, expand voting rights, and combat corruption with improved transparency and ethics in all three branches of the federal government. As we see a historic number of attacks and proposed restrictions on voting rights propagating in state legislatures across the country, Congress must make good on our promise to restore and protect the most basic and consequential civic duty of every American. Everyone must be guaranteed a voice in our democracy and H.R. 1 is a critical first step in restoring that promise.
“H.R. 1 will modernize voter registration and increase access to support free and fair elections with more equitable electoral practices fit for the 21st century. By instituting automatic voter registration, requiring early voting options, supporting voting by mail, and increasing voting locations especially near public transportation, this legislation will empower voters across our country and ensure their voices are heard at all levels of government. It ends the practice of partisan gerrymandering, which has allowed political parties to choose their voters when it should be voters picking their representatives. This bill will also take steps to end the dominance of big money in political campaigns by upgrading online political advertisement disclosures and requiring all organizations involved in political activity to disclose their large donors to prevent hidden sources of political spending.
“These protections will ultimately empower citizens and ensure their representatives remain transparent and accountable to them. H.R. 1 paves the way to restoring the Voting Rights Act and pushing back on the Supreme Court’s misguided Citizens United ruling. Renewing the public’s confidence in our democracy and accountability requires a comprehensive approach. I am proud to support this important step in reforming our electoral process to increase transparency and integrity in our democratic process.
For more information about H.R. 1, see the policy fact sheet here.