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Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham

Representing the 1st District of New Mexico

More than 170 Members of House Join Effort to Create Independent Commission to Investigate Foreign Interference in U.S. Elections

Jan 19, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, Rep. Eric Swalwell (CA-15), the Ranking Member of the CIA Subcommittee of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and Rep. Elijah Cummings (MD-07), the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, are reintroducing their Protecting Our Democracy Act to establish an independent, bipartisan commission to investigate foreign interference in the 2016 election.
 
They originally introduced their legislation on December 7, 2016, at the end of the 114th Congress. Since then, they have obtained the support of more than 170 Members of the House of Representatives, including Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer, and all members of House Democratic leadership; the Ranking Members of all House Committees; and all Democratic members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

Their bill would create a 12-member, bipartisan, independent commission empowered to interview witnesses, obtain documents, issue subpoenas, and receive public testimony to examine attempts by the Russian government or others to use electronic means to influence, interfere with, or undermine trust in last year’s U.S. elections. The commission would examine any similar efforts by any other foreign governments or entities and would issue a final report with recommendations to Congress and the President within 18 months of enactment.
 
“There’s overwhelming agreement across America that our democracy was attacked this past presidential election. Now everyone’s asking what our nation’s leaders will do about it. Our legislation answers that question by identifying who was responsible and telling Americans what we will do to secure our next election,” said Ranking Member Swalwell. “We continue to seek Republican cosponsors because this must be about country, not party. If we do nothing, we are telling the world our elections are open for influence by the most aggressive meddler. With 17 intelligence agencies agreeing that Russia interfered in our election, we most move quickly to have an independent, bipartisan, de-politicized commission to fully examine the circumstances, inform the public of its findings, and develop a plan to prevent this from ever happening again.”
 
“The most senior leaders of our Intelligence Community testified yesterday that Russia interfered in our elections, which Republicans and Democrats alike have compared to an act of war,” said Ranking Member Cummings. “This grave threat calls for a truly bipartisan and independent commission that can put politics aside and conduct a complete review of this interference in our democratic process, and make concrete recommendations to protect our nation from being undermined by any foreign power. We cannot allow this to become the new normal for what we will accept as Americans.”
 
The 12 members of the independent commission would be appointed within 90 days of enactment of the Swalwell-Cummings bill by the Speaker of the House (3), Senate Majority Leader (3), House Minority Leader (3), and Senate Minority Leader (3). The commission would choose a chair and vice chair of different parties.  No federal officers or employees would be eligible to serve on the commission. Appointees would be prominent U.S. citizens with national recognition and significant depth of experience in governmental service, law enforcement, armed services, law, public administration, intelligence gathering, foreign affairs, cybersecurity, and federal elections.
 
This week, a bipartisan group of former senior intelligence and defense officials – including former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, former Acting Director of Central Intelligence Michael Morrell, and former Member of Congress and 9/11 Commission Vice Chair Lee Hamilton – sent a letter urging Congress to create an “independent, bipartisan commission” to “understand fully and publicly what happened, how we were so vulnerable, and what we can do to protect our democracy in future elections.”
The bill’s original cosponsors include:
1.      Eric Swalwell
2.      Elijah Cummings
3.      Sheila Jackson Lee
4.      Alma Adams
5.      Pete Aguilar
6.      Nanette Barragan
7.      Karen Bass
8.      Joyce Beatty
9.      Sanford Bishop
10.  Earl Blumenauer
11.  Lisa Blunt-Rochester
12.  Suzanne Bonamici
13.  Madeleine Bordallo
14.  Brendan Boyle
15.  Robert Brady
16.  Anthony Brown
17.  Julia Brownley
18.  Cheri Bustos
19.  G.K. Butterfield
20.  Michael Capuano
21.  Salud Carbajal
22.  Tony Cardenas
23.  Matt Cartwright
24.  Andre Carson
25.  Kathy Castor
26.  Joaquin Castro
27.  Judy Chu
28.  David Cicilline
29.  Katherine Clark
30.  Yvette Clarke
31.  William Lacy Clay
32.  Emanuel Cleaver
33.  James Clyburn
34.  Steve Cohen
35.  Gerald E Connolly
36.  John Conyers, Jr.
37.  Jim Cooper
38.  J. Luis Correa
39.  Jim Costa
40.  Joe Courtney
41.  Joseph Crowley
42.  Henry Cuellar
43.  Danny K. Davis
44.  Susan Davis
45.  Peter DeFazio
46.  Diana DeGette
47.  John Delaney
48.  Rosa DeLauro
49.  Mark DeSaulnier
50.  Theodore Deutch
51.  Debbie Dingell
52.  Lloyd Doggett
53.  Michael Doyle
54.  Keith Ellison
55.  Eliot Engel
56.  Anna Eshoo
57.  Adriano Espaillat
58.  Elizabeth Esty
59.  Dwight Evans
60.  Bill Foster
61.  Lois Frankel
62.  Marcia Fudge
63.  Ruben Gallego
64.  John Garamendi
65.  Vicente Gonzalez
66.  Al Green
67.  Gene Green
68.  Raul Grijalva
69.  Luis Gutiérrez
70.  Alcee Hastings
71.  Denny Heck
72.  Jim Himes
73.  Steny Hoyer
74.  Jared Huffman
75.  Pramila Jayapal
76.  Hakeem Jeffries
77.  Eddie Bernice Johnson
78.  Hank Johnson
79.  Marcy Kaptur
80.  William Keating
81.  Robin Kelly
82.  Joseph P. Kennedy III
83.  Ro Khanna
84.  Ruben Kihuen
85.  Daniel Kildee
86.  Derek Kilmer
87.  Ron Kind
88.  Raja Krishnamoorthi
89.  Ann McLane Kuster
90.  James Langevin
91.  Rick Larsen
92.  John Larson
93.  Brenda Lawrence
94.  Barbara Lee
95.  Sander Levin
96.  John Lewis
97.  Ted Lieu
98.  David Loebsack
99.  Zoe Lofgren
100.                      Alan Lowenthal
101.                      Nita Lowey
102.                      Ben Ray Lujan
103.                      Michelle Lujan Grisham
104.                      Stephen Lynch
105.                      Carolyn Maloney
106.                      Doris Matsui
107.                      Betty McCollum
108.                      A. Donald McEachin
109.                      James P. McGovern
110.                      Jerry McNerney
111.                      Gregory Meeks
112.                      Grace Meng
113.                      Seth Moulton
114.                      Gwen Moore
115.                      Stephanie Murphy
116.                      Jerrold Nadler
117.                      Grace Napolitano
118.                      Richard Neal
119.                      Donald Norcross
120.                      Eleanor Holmes Norton
121.                      Beto O’Rourke
122.                      Frank Pallone
123.                      Jimmy Panetta
124.                      Bill Pascrell
125.                      Nancy Pelosi
126.                      Ed Perlmutter
127.                      Scott Peters
128.                      Collin Peterson
129.                      Stacey Plaskett
130.                      Mark Pocan
131.                      Jared Polis
132.                      David Price
133.                      Mike Quigley
134.                      Jamie Raskin
135.                      Kathleen Rice
136.                      Cedric Richmond
137.                      Jacky Rosen
138.                      Lucille Roybal-Allard
139.                      Raul Ruiz
140.                      C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger
141.                      Bobby Rush
142.                      Tim Ryan
143.                      Gregorio Sablan
144.                      Linda Sanchez
145.                      John Sarbanes
146.                      Janice Schakowsky
147.                      Adam Schiff
148.                      Bradley Schneider
149.                      Bobby Scott
150.                      Jose Serrano
151.                      Terri Sewell
152.                      Carol Shea-Porter
153.                      Brad Sherman
154.                      Kyrsten Sinema
155.                      Albio Sires
156.                      Louise Slaughter
157.                      Adam Smith
158.                      Darren Soto
159.                      Jackie Speier
160.                      Thomas Suozzi
161.                      Mark Takano
162.                      Bennie Thompson
163.                      Mike Thompson
164.                      Dina Titus
165.                      Paul Tonko
166.                      Norma Torres
167.                      Niki Tsongas
168.                      Juan Vargas
169.                      Marc Veasey
170.                      Filemon Vela
171.                      Nydia Velazquez
172.                      Debbie Wasserman Schultz
173.                      Maxine Waters
174.                      Bonnie Watson Coleman
175.                      Peter Welch
176.                      John Yarmuth