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House Democrats promote anti-corruption legislation

By
Danielle Haynes
House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California announced a sweeping anti-corruption package as the party's first legislation of the new session. Photo by Alex Edelman/UPI
House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California announced a sweeping anti-corruption package as the party's first legislation of the new session. Photo by Alex Edelman/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 30 (UPI) -- House Democrats unveiled an anti-corruption bill Friday, the group's first legislation since taking control of the chamber earlier this month.

Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California announced House Resolution 1 during a news conference at the Capitol. She called the legislation "transformative."

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"One of the issues that emerged in the campaign ... is the integrity of government as part of our for-the-people agenda," she said.

The legislation seeks to reduce the role of money in the government and protect voting rights.

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It will "amplify the voice of every American," Pelosi said.

A Pew poll released in May found that 77 percent of Americans believe there should be limits on the amount of money individuals and groups should spend on campaigns. Sixty-five percent said new laws could be effective in reducing the impact of money on politics.

"Our best friend in this debate is the public," Pelosi said. "We believe it will have great support."

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Rep. John Sarbanes, D-Md., who joined Pelosi at the news conference, said the plan was to have a bill ready for a vote Jan. 3, the first day of the new session in Congress.

The legislation calls for a six-to-one match of campaign contributions from the government. So for each dollar a candidate raises, the federal government would contribute $6. Additionally, Super PACs and other political organizations would be required to reveal donors.

Other measures include requiring the president to disclose tax returns, preventing members of Congress from using taxpayer funds to settle sexual harassment allegations and creating a code of conduct for the Supreme Court.

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In a voting rights overhaul, there would be automatic voter registration, increasing elections security and ending gerrymandering.

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