Rep. Bryan Steil, R-Wis., told Newsmax on Monday that election interference is "a real issue" that Congress needs to take action on before the next November election.
"In our nation's capital in Washington, D.C., in the next election, someone who is a Russian national working at the Russian embassy residing in Washington, D.C., for only 30 days could leave the embassy with their passport in their pocket, walk and vote for mayor in our nation's capital, and not even have to show their ID to do it," Steil said during an appearance on "Wake Up America."
"We need to make sure that American elections are for American citizens and that we're ending foreign interference in our elections," he said. "We're closing loopholes that allow foreign nationals to put money into U.S. ballot initiatives and referendums. We're making sure states have the tools, that they have access to remove noncitizens from their rolls.
"We're all-out banning noncitizens voting in places like our nation's capital. We need to get this done. It's essential. We need to strengthen our integrity in our elections, and, if we do that, if we increase people's confidence in our elections, more people who are legal will participate, and that's a good thing."
Steil went on to discuss an effort to get voter integrity bills through the House and how some of the bills "may" garner bipartisan support.
"I think it's hard to have anyone justify noncitizens voting in our nation's capital," he said.
"Now, don't leave it to the Democrats to try to argue their way out of that box because we know, at the end of the day, it's what they want," he continued. "They want weak voter integrity laws, but let's put it to the floor. Let's bring it to a test. I'm confident you'll have 100% of Republicans in the House of Representatives, and that's enough to pass it and let's find out if the Democrats really do support allowing noncitizens to vote in our nation's capital."
When asked why anybody would push back on election reforms, Steil said there are some people "that don't want to see any election integrity measures go forward."
"Some of this bill is pretty darn common sense," he said. "One of these is that we simply give states the tools that they need to get the job done. That's giving states access to two things in particular: the voter and Social Security death database. When's a good time to remove someone from the voter rolls? When they die."
"We also give states access to the Social Security voter rolls to make sure that they can remove noncitizens who may be on their rolls. These are all pretty darn common sense reforms that should have been done a long time ago. I have no doubt that my Democratic colleagues will try to fear-monger, will try to make excuses as to why they'll vote against this.
"It's the reason that I would like to see this legislation come to the House floor. Let's find out where people stand. I'm confident we have the votes amongst Republicans to move this forward and then let's put pressure to get this done before next fall's election."
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Nicole Wells ✉
Nicole Wells, a Newsmax general assignment reporter covers news, politics, and culture. She is a National Newspaper Association award-winning journalist.
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