Back to the Drawing Board

Sep 19, 2007

WASHINGTON – After eight months of unsuccessful attempts by Democrats to construct legislation that would increase voter’s confidence, the Committee on House Administration’s Ranking Republican, Vern Ehlers, R-Mich., concluded that H.R. 811 is fatally flawed, and recommended that Congress regroup with various stakeholders in order to pass workable legislation in the 110th Congress.


In a letter to House Leadership dated September 18, 2007, Ehlers wrote, “the desperate, last-minute scramble we are witnessing to further amend this flawed bill, in an attempt to piece together a majority vote in the House, is playing dangerously with our vital election processes.”


The Ranking Member also referenced a recent statement from the National Association of Election Officials’ Executive Director, Doug Lewis, who stated, “The legislation is so bad that if it has any chance of passage as a law, then it is time for the Federal government to run its own elections.” In his letter, Ehlers described that prospect as “exceedingly sobering.”


While Ehlers cited his concerns with H.R. 811, election reform legislation introduced by Representative Rush Holt, D-N.J., he also expressed his desire to work together stating, “I have offered in the past, and will do so again here, to be an active and enthusiastic participant in an effort to regroup on this issue of further improving voter confidence.” He also noted, “it appears that there is now widespread recognition that H.R. 811 is not a proposal that can be resuscitated to something that would achieve a consensus of interested parties, but I am optimistic that we can still pass a bill in the 110th Congress that accomplishes its original, fundamental objective of improving voter confidence.”


For more information, please contact the Committee press office at (202) 225-8281.