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U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) announced that their legislation to reform and modernize the outdated Electoral Count Act of 1887 was signed into law last night as part of the Fiscal Year 2023 Omnibus Appropriations bill.

The bipartisan legislation had 39 Senate cosponsors, including Senate Leaders Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Senate Rules Committee Chairman Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Ranking Member Roy Blunt (R-MO).

“After nearly a year of bipartisan negotiations, we are delighted that the Senate’s ECA reform is now law,” said Senators Collins and Manchin.  “We were grateful to have the support of so many of our colleagues.  Through numerous meetings and debates among Senators, along with conversations with a wide variety of election experts and legal scholars, we reached consensus on an historic piece of legislation.  This law fixes the flaws of the archaic and ambiguous Electoral Count Act of 1887 and establishes clear guidelines for our system of certifying and counting electoral votes for President and Vice President.”

In addition to Senators Collins and Manchin, the core group of negotiators include: Rob Portman (R-OH), Kyrsten Sinema (I-AZ), Mitt Romney (R-UT), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Mark Warner (D-VA), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Todd Young (R-IN), Chris Coons (D-DE), and Ben Sasse (R-NE).

The additional cosponsors include: Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), John Hickenlooper (D-CO), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Alex Padilla (D-CA), Pat Toomey (R-PA), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Roy Blunt (R-MO), John Thune (R-SD), John Cornyn (R-TX), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Tom Carper (D-DE), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Richard Burr (R-NC), Gary Peters (D-MI), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Angus King (I-ME), and Jacky Rosen (D-NV).

Senators Collins and Manchin first introduced the Electoral Count Reform and Presidential Transition Improvement Act on July 20th.  On August 3rd, at the invitation Senators Klobuchar and Blunt, Senators Collins and Manchin provided remarks before the Rules Committee in support of their legislation.  On September 27th, the bill was favorably reported out of the Senate Rules Committee by a vote of 14-1.  The omnibus funding package, which included their legislation, passed the Senate by a vote of 68-29 and the House by a vote of 225-201.

The Electoral Count Reform Act would reform and modernize the outdated Electoral Count Act of 1887 to ensure that electoral votes tallied by Congress accurately reflect each state’s popular vote for President. It would replace ambiguous provisions of the 19th-century law with clear procedures that maintain appropriate state and federal roles in selecting the President and Vice President of the United States as set forth in the U.S. Constitution.

Author: Press Release


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