Protect Democracy Welcomes Inclusion of Critical Reforms to the Electoral Count Act in Omnibus Appropriations Bill; Urges Passage to Protect Future Elections 

  • December 20, 2022

Today, Congressional leaders announced that they have included the Electoral Count Reform Act (ECRA) in the omnibus appropriations bill. The ECRA, which emerged from a bipartisan Senate working group and was voted out of the Senate Rules Committee with near-unanimous support, would fix dangerous weaknesses in current law which were exploited during the last presidential election. As a stand-alone bill, the ECRA earned 38 cosponsors with strong representation from both political parties. The Senate Rules Committee favorably voted the ECRA out of committee by a 14-1 vote. It is now up to Congress to pass these reforms into law through the omnibus appropriations bill. 

In reaction to the inclusion of the ECRA amendment, Genevieve Nadeau, counsel with Protect Democracy, released the following statement:

“The stakes couldn’t be higher for Congress to remove weaknesses in the Electoral Count Act that were exploited during the last presidential election. We applaud the Senate for including the Electoral Count Reform Act as part of their deal. This legislation will help to safeguard the peaceful transition of power following future elections and better ensure that the will of voters is respected by Congress, while also protecting against improper efforts by state officials to refuse to certify lawful election results. The ECRA earned broad bipartisan support in its own right because it strengthens our democracy without providing an advantage to either political party. 

Protect Democracy thanks the members of Congress and their dedicated staff who worked to make this happen, along with the cross-partisan group of experts and advocates who have been working toward ECA reform for years.

We urge the swift passage of the omnibus appropriations bill, including these crucial updates to the Electoral Count Act.”

Protect Democracy also commends the valuable updates to the Presidential Transition Act to ensure that a winning presidential candidate can move ahead with important transition work on a timely basis even in the event of a close or contested election. Those reforms were included in the ECA reform legislation approved by the Senate Rules Committee and ultimately included in the omnibus spending bill.

If you have additional questions or would like to interview one of our experts please reach out to Blake at [email protected]. For more information on updating the ECA, visit our website which is updated regularly and includes an ECRA explainer and FAQ on ECA reform.

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