House members roll out bipartisan election bill aimed at preventing future coups

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WASHINGTON — A pair of centrist House lawmakers are rolling out a bill Wednesday to prevent stolen elections in the wake of the Jan. 6 attack, mirroring bipartisan legislation in the Senate, NBC News has learned.

Moderate Reps. Josh Gottheimer, DN.J., and Fred Upton, R-Mich., are co-sponsoring House legislation, known as the Voter Count Reform and Presidential Transition Improvement Act, which would revise the old electoral count law of 1887.

They are now introducing the bill to give new impetus to the Senate’s effort, led by the senses. Joe Manchin, DW.Va., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, with limited time in this Congress.

Both bills seek to prevent future coup attempts by clarifying the vice president’s limited role in counting Electoral College votes, raising the threshold for members of Congress to oppose presidential voters. States, strengthening election certification laws for the legitimate winner and promoting an orderly presidential transition.

The bipartisan House duo is also trying to run before a rival electoral reform bill from two Jan. 6 committee members, Reps. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., and Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., on House Administration Committee. president who is close to Speaker Nancy Pelosi. This rival bill is expected to be unveiled this week and be broader than the Gottheimer-Upton bill.

Separately, the Jan. 6 committee is expected to unveil its own set of legislative recommendations this fall to ensure that an attempt to void a U.S. election, like what happened on Jan. 6, 2021, never happens again.

The flurry of election bills is a response to widespread efforts by former President Donald Trump and his allies to overturn the results of the 2020 election, in part by trying to pressure the then-Vice President, Mike Pence, to unilaterally block or delay certification of Joe Biden’s victory.

Gottheimer and Upton believe their proposal, which already enjoys broad support in the Senate, has the best chance of being signed into law.

“With this bipartisan, bicameral legislation, both sides of the aisle come together to protect our great democracy, preserve the integrity of our elections and prevent any attempt to undermine them. The future of our nation depends on it, and now is the time to act,” Gottheimer, co-chair of the bipartisan Problem Solvers, said in a statement.

“By clearly specifying the procedures for counting electoral votes, this bill provides the clarity voters need to know their vote for Presidential questions,” added Upton, who was one of 10 Republicans who cast their ballots. to impeach Donald Trump for his role in January 6th. attacks and retires this year. “Furthermore, it ensures that political party play will not be a factor in the long-running presidential selection process.”

The bill’s Senate companion recently landed its 10th GOP sponsor, Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, giving him enough support to overcome a filibuster if all 50 Democrats stick together.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, DN.Y., and other Democrats want to tackle electoral reform by the end of the year, given that Republicans are unlikely address the issue next year if they return control of the House.

But senators involved in the effort say that due to government funding and other priorities, they likely won’t be able to introduce the election bill until the lame post-election session.

“We are very pleased that Representatives Gottheimer and Upton have introduced the House Companion to our legislation that would correct the flaws in the archaic and ambiguous Voter Count Act of 1887,” Collins and Manchin said in a joint statement.

“Their leadership is helping to build momentum to pass these important and much-needed reforms. We will continue to work with our colleagues to increase bipartisan and bicameral support for this legislation.

Sahil Kapour contributed.

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