by Jonathan Decker
Last week, Nancy Pelosi and the House Democrats rammed through H.R. 1, the “For the People Act,” in a party-line vote. While Democrats and their media allies claim the House passage of this legislation amounts to a victory for “transparency” that would make our elections process more democratic, H.R. 1 does quite the opposite. The “For the People Act” is potentially the most egregious attack on free speech ever proposed in legislative text and was crafted with an apparent goal in mind of tilting the electoral playing field to benefit Democrats during the 2020 election cycle and beyond.
And not a single House Democrat had the political courage to vote against it.
Naming all of the ways H.R. 1 silences free speech is like shooting fish in a barrel — even the liberal ACLU came out against this bill — but perhaps the single worst provision is that it would use your tax dollars to fund candidates you don’t agree with or whose policy stances you may be morally opposed to. This is done via a six-to-one match of federal dollars for campaign contributions of less than $200. Democrats are confident they can exploit this to their advantage due to their robust online infrastructure for soliciting small-dollar donations. A $100 donation to a progressive candidate could suddenly become a $600 one — paid for by your tax dollars.
Furthermore, H.R. 1 would also take away a state’s right to draw its own congressional lines. The legislation calls for shifting away from state legislature drawn lines by duly elected representatives and giving this authority to independent commissions. Doing so contradicts H.R. 1’s very name by taking power away from locally elected representatives and giving more power to unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats. This amounts to a blatant attempt by Democrats to re-draw Congressional districts all across the country to give themselves an electoral advantage.
The bill also includes sweeping new regulations on online speech regarding candidates or policy issues. These regulations include new disclosure requirements designed to have a chilling effect on free speech by requiring outside organizations to disclose their donors so they may be subject to targeted harassment from liberal activists looking to search and destroy. Finally, H.R. 1 would also turn the balanced Federal Election Commission into a partisan one by reducing the number of members from six to five.
Although Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has thankfully promised Americans that he won’t let this bill get through the Senate, it is extremely disappointing that House Democrats would vote in lockstep to support this vindictive and unconstitutional bill. It is scary to think of what this could mean if Democrats were to hold all the levers of power. This bill would destroy our freedom of speech in America — but liberals know that once they silence our speech, they win.
Author’s Note: Katie Williamson also contributed to this report.
Photo credit: Jennifer Moo via Flickr, CC BY-ND 2.0