Committee on House Administration Ranking Member Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) delivered the Republicans' Motion to Recommit (MTR) on the House majority's H.R. 4, the Voting Rights Advancement Act. The MTR would prevent any fines or settlement agreements that result from H.R. 4 from being used to publicly finance politicians campaigns.

Read the transcript as written of Ranking Member Davis' speech below:

H.R. 4, the Voting Rights Advancement Act, is the fourth partisan attempt by this majority to federalize our elections. One thing all four of these partisan bills have in common is they all have good titles.

But in October, the majority jammed through H.R. 4617, the SHIELD Act, an attempt to federally hijack campaign finance law in this country. In June, the majority jammed through H.R. 2722, the SAFE Act, an attempt to federally hijack election infrastructure in this country. And in February, the majority jammed through H.R. 1, the For the People Act, a piece of legislation, that as introduced, would fund all our campaigns with tax dollars from hard working Americans.

Catchy titles can't hide the facts, and the facts are that these four bills are bad, partisan policy that would negatively affect the American people.

When the Democrats proposed public financing of campaigns in H.R. 1,
I could hardly believe it. The 6 to 1 small-dollar campaign match program would create a mandatory donation from the American taxpayer to a political candidate. That means for every $200 donated to a campaign, the federal government would have to give $1200 to that same politician's campaign. This program would do nothing but fill the swamp, and any Member who voted for it was voting to fill their own pockets, and the pockets of political operatives nationwide.

They agree with me, because at Rules Committee, this was changed. This shell game now includes a fund which is supposedly financed through "fines and settlements." But we have now seen the CBO score, and this fund does not support itself. So, what happens when it fails? I'll tell you, it will ultimately fall to the American taxpayer to support this Democratic policy.

But fines and settlements take us back to the legislation we hope to recommit to committee today.
There are Members who would have you believe that there are currently no existing laws protecting the right for every American to vote, or that the Voting Rights Act is no longer in effect. However, the Voting Rights Act is protecting American's voting rights today, and it includes many important provisions.

Title 1 Voting Rights Act, 52 U.S.C. section 10501(a) says – "No citizen shall be denied, because of his failure to comply with any test or device, the right to vote in any election." Still in effect, $5,000 fine.

  • 52 U.S.C. section 10307(A) – "No person shall prevent another who is entitled to vote, from voting." Still in effect, $5,000 fine.
  • 52 U.S.C. section 10308(B) – "No person shall destroy, deface, or alter official voting ballots." Still in effect, $5,000 fine.
  • 52 U.S.C. section 10307(C) – "No person shall provide false information in registering to vote, or in voting." Still in effect, $10,000 fine.
  • 52 U.S.C. section 10307(E) – "No person shall vote more than once." Still in effect, $10,000 fine.
  • 52 U.S.C. section 10307(D) – "No person shall falsify or conceal material facts." Still in effect, $10,000 fine.
  • 52 U.S.C. section 10307(B) – "No person shall intimidate, threaten, or coerce any person for voting or attempting to vote." Still in effect.

Do not let anyone tell you the Voting Rights Act is not alive and well in this country.

What we have debated today is NOT a reauthorization of this important and historically bipartisan legislation that has prevented discrimination at the ballot box, because it does not need reauthorization.

Sections 2 & 3 of the Voting Rights Act, that are currently in effect, are continuing to help safeguard the public from discrimination at the ballot box.
Every eligible American who wants to vote in our country's elections should be able to cast their vote.

This legislation, H.R. 4, is only about preclearance and the Democrat majority giving the Department of Justice and the Federal Government control over all election activity. Jurisdictions under preclearance cannot move a polling location, expand vote by mail efforts, nor properly maintain their voting rolls without a partisan Department of Justice clearing everything they do.

This is about control and taking power away from state and local elections officials who they don't like and putting it in the hands of the Federal Government.

So, this bill doesn't reauthorize the Voting Rights Act. What does it do? It opens the door for fines and settlements in this country, including under this Act, to be hijacked, once again, by my colleagues for their own political campaigns if they get their way.

My motion to recommit is simple – Make it clear to your constituents, that fines and settlements under the VRA will not be going to your own campaign coffers.

You can read the Motion to Recommit by clicking here.