July 25, 2019

Wyden Renews Call for Mandatory Election Security Standards In Response to Intelligence Committee Report

“The federal government’s response to this ongoing crisis cannot be limited offers to provide resources and information”

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., today called on Congress to act to secure federal elections, rather than leaving states to fend for themselves against hostile foreign hackers, in his response to a new Senate Intelligence Committee report issued today.

“If there was ever a moment when Congress needed to exercise its clear constitutional authorities to regulate elections, this is it. America is facing a direct assault on the heart of our democracy by a determined adversary. We would not ask a local sheriff to go to war against the missiles, tanks and planes of the Russian Army. We shouldn’t ask a county election IT employee to fight a war against the full capabilities and vast resources of Russia’s cyber army. That approach failed in 2016 and it will fail again,” Wyden wrote.

“The federal government’s response to this ongoing crisis cannot be limited to offers to provide resources and information, the acceptance of which is voluntary. If the country’s elections are to be defended, Congress must also establish mandatory, nation-wide cybersecurity requirements.”

Sen. Wyden’s minority views to the report begin on page 62 of the report, which is available here. The House of Representatives has already passed strong election security legislation, on a bipartisan basis, to set mandatory election security requirements for all federal elections and a companion measure was introduced in the Senate this week.