STATEMENT: H.R. 1 Will Return Power to the People

Washington, D.C. — Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed historic democracy reform legislation, H.R. 1, the For the People Act of 2019. This comprehensive legislative package contains bold solutions to reduce big money and dark money in politics; impose stronger ethics restrictions on public officials; and strengthen voting rights to empower American voters. The Center for American Progress has long advocated for anti-corruption and clean election policies—and it is a leading member of the Declaration for American Democracy, a diverse coalition of approximately 150 organizations representing millions of Americans that is demanding strong, clear solutions to make our democracy more representative of everyday Americans.

The Center for American Progress urges all presidential candidates to build upon the reforms of H.R.1 and make anti-corruption and clean elections solutions a centerpiece of their platforms. So far, every major Democratic presidential candidate entering the race this year has embraced money-in-politics reforms, deciding to reject all corporate PAC money.

Following the passage of H.R.1, Neera Tanden, CAP president and CEO, released the following statement:

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives—led by congressional Democrats—showed that it clearly heard the demands of voters last November: It is time to end the culture of corruption in Washington. In 2018, Americans voted the new majority into control of the House by the biggest margin in modern history with a mandate to aggressively reform the rigged system. H.R. 1 is a once-in-a-generation legislative package to fix the way Washington works. This legislation ensures that the most important voice in shaping elections and policy decisions is the voice of the people—not millionaires and wealthy special interests.

The most sweeping democracy reform legislation since Watergate, H.R.1 includes policies to ban members of Congress from serving on for-profit corporate boards or using nonpublic information to personally enrich themselves. The legislation also shines a bright light on dark money and foreign money in our elections and enacts a small-dollar campaign finance system to vastly amplify the voices of everyday Americans in our elections, while taking numerous steps to help ensure every American can exercise their right to vote. CAP urges the Senate to pass counterpart legislation and for presidential candidates to present clear, far-reaching solutions to restore our democracy and rebuild the public’s confidence that our government works for everyone—not just the wealthiest few.

For more information or to speak to an expert, contact Julia Cusick at 202-495-3682 or .