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Public Statements

Disclose Act

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. BAYH. Mr. President, I rise today to join my colleagues in support of S. 3295, the Democracy Is Strengthened by Casting Light On Spending in Elections, DISCLOSE, Act. I would like to thank Senators SCHUMER, FEINGOLD, WYDEN, FRANKEN, and BENNET for their hard work in crafting this legislation and their efforts to help protect the integrity of our political process.

I rise today to clarify the intent of our legislation. Opponents of our efforts have asserted that our bill is intended to chill political speech and discourage participation in the electoral process. Nothing could be further from the truth. Our bill is about disclosure and transparency. It is premised on the idea that democracy functions best when citizens are fully informed. We trust the wisdom of the American people and believe that they deserve to know all of the facts.

Throughout my career, I have supported efforts to increase participation in our political process and worked to eliminate barriers that unduly burden the fundamental right vote. That is why I cosponsored legislation to make it easier for military and overseas voters to vote in our elections, opposed Indiana's misguided voter identification requirements, and cosponsored legislation to help prevent the use of deceptive practices and voter intimidation.

I hope that our colleagues on both sides of the aisle will join us in quickly passing this important legislation.

I now yield for my colleague, Senator FRANKEN, who is deeply committed to protecting the first amendment.


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