Rep. Loudermilk Calls Out Democrats for Not Working with Republicans on Electoral Count Act
Washington, September 21, 2022
Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA) gave the following House floor speech regarding the Presidential Election Reform Act, H.R. 8873:
“Thank you, Madam Speaker. And I do thank my friend, Ranking Member Davis, for yielding this time. I want to address something that I heard just a few moments ago from my colleague from Wyoming – listing off a number of ‘conservative commentators’ about how great this bill is, and that's why we should vote on it. Well, see, that's the problem of why we're here right now. None of those conservative commentators are responsible for casting a vote for something that will affect the future of this country.
“You see, we're here now making a decision on this issue, when we should have been included in this process all along. And I'm not calling to question whether this bill is good or .. bad. What I'm saying is, we have not been involved in this process and we're being told to just take the word of someone because they call themselves a conservative commentator. But it's those of us here that have been elected by the people of this nation that are given the responsibility to analyze these things, to work together in a bipartisan manner, to come up with what is the best solution for this nation. But that is not where we are. A partisan-run committee …has rushed this bill to the floor, and we're being told that we need to work on it and it's imperative that we pass it now.
“Now, don't get me wrong, I agree that we ought to take a closer look at the Electoral Count Act. I agree that we should clarify some of the mechanisms of the act, and I certainly agree that we should be working to prevent another breach of security of this Capitol, as we saw on January 6th. With that said, we can't afford a one sided, no compromises discussion crafted by a partisan select committee, which is what we're being presented with this bill, at least from the perception that we have at this moment.
“So, my question is, why now? Why has the January 6th Committee chosen this moment to pursue this legislation instead of working together in a true bipartisan manner, engaging Republicans and Democrats together in a broader perspective? Well, you see, the American people are smart, and they know the answer to this question. The January 6th Committee has really wasted more than a year.
“Instead of looking into how the security of this building was breached, they've been looking for a year for evidence of some vast conspiracy on January 6, 2021, with nothing to show for it. They spent days falsely accusing myself and some of our other colleagues of wrongdoing in the days prior to the January 6th incident, without producing any substantial evidence to back up their claims. Why? Because it doesn't exist.
“Now, with midterm elections looming, and the prospect of a new majority in the House and the Senate, they feel they need to justify the time they've wasted by inserting themselves into what was once a bipartisan, bicameral discussion of Electoral Count Reform Act. In the meantime, House Republicans have taken concrete steps to promote confidence in elections at every level of government.
“We've introduced legislation that would reaffirm state’s constitutional sovereignty over elections, rather than trampling it. We've done this because the American people are tired of hearing about January 6th. The American people care about the growing cost of living, the declining economy, and the uncontrolled spending which has caused massive inflation. The American people want to be confident that their vote counts in every election, that they can trust the ballot box, and their concerns won't be ignored by lawmakers in Washington.
“I'll close with this – the American people don't need the January 6th Committee to tell them what's broken in this country. They look at their declining paycheck, the rising cost of groceries, and they see this body focused on the past instead of correcting their future. And they see that this body, and its reckless spending, is why we have record inflation at this moment.
“For that reason, I encourage my colleagues vote No on the Presidential Election Reform Act, and then let's work together on something that will work for the American people. Thank you, Madam Speaker, and I yield back.”