Durbin: Shame On Us If We Don't Do Everything In Our Power To Protect The Integrity Of Our Elections

Durbin Calls On Senator McConnell To End His Legislative Graveyard And Pass The Election Security Act

WASHINGTON – In a speech on the Senate floor, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), a member of the Senate Rules Committee, today called on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to end his legislative graveyard and for the Senate to pass the Election Security Act.  This critical, comprehensive election security legislation would provide significant election security funding to states for cyber improvements and audits and establish a robust federal effort to protect our democracy.  Senator John Kennedy (R-LA) objected to Durbin’s unanimous consent request to pass the Election Security Act due to the amount of funding that would be provided to States to secure their elections. 

“To say we can’t afford to protect the integrity of our vote, then what is a democracy worth?  What is it worth?  It’s worth human lives and it’s worth our investment in this generation to make sure that those votes count whether you live in a red state or blue state,” Durbin said.  “I want an election to truly reflect the way the American people feel about candidates and issues that are before them.  And that’s why I’m so disappointed by this Senator’s objection.”

Durbin continued, “Shame on us if the result of a presidential election is later found to have been tampered with by our enemies overseas.  Shame on us if we don’t do everything we were supposed to do in the Senate, in the House, in this government to protect that God-given right for a democracy that we cherish so much.” 

Video of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor are available here.

Audio of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here.

Footage of Durbin’s remarks on the Senate floor is available here for TV Stations.

Beginning in June 2016, the Illinois State Board of Elections was the target of a malicious, month-long cyberattack that enabled the intruder to access confidential voter information and view the registration data of approximately 76,000 voters in Illinois.  

Last year, Illinois received $13.2 million in new federal funding to strengthen its election security systems, part of the Fiscal Year 2018 federal omnibus spending bill that provided $380 million to the Election Assistance Commission (EAC).  State election officials have said more funding will be necessary to replace aging election equipment and maintain the Cyber Navigator Program, which is designed to support the efforts of local election authorities to defend against cyber breaches and detect and recover from cyberattacks.