House Dem calls on lawmakers to 'insulate' election process following Mueller report

The biggest takeaway from the release of special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerGraham: Mueller investigation a 'political rectal exam' House progressive: Pelosi 'has it right' on impeachment Democrats talk subpoena for Mueller MORE’s report is the need to better protect America’s electoral process, according to Rep. Jamie RaskinJamin (Jamie) Ben RaskinHouse progressive: Pelosi 'has it right' on impeachment House Democrats press leaders to start Trump impeachment WHIP LIST: Democrats who support an impeachment inquiry against President Trump MORE (D-Md.).

“That’s really perhaps the biggest takeaway of all — that we’ve got to insulate our elections, both our state computer processes and our cyber security against these kinds of attacks and we’ve got to be ready for it,” Raskin, a Democratic member of the House Judiciary Committee, told Hill.TV’s Jamal Simmons during an interview that aired on Friday.

“We can’t allow foreign governments or domestic actors to divide the American people along the lines of race, ethnicity and party in such a severe way as they did in the 2016 campaign,” Raskin continued.

The Maryland Democrat added that he’s willing to accept Mueller’s findings that the Trump campaign did not collude with Russia, even though members were “clearly the beneficiaries of it.”

“I’m perfectly willing to accept the special counsel’s conclusion that the Trump campaign was not involved at the beginning of this in a criminal conspiracy — they were clearly the beneficiaries of it … and they clearly went along with it,” he said, citing the 2016 Trump Tower meeting as one example.

According to the report, Mueller had considered charging Trump campaign officials with a campaign finance violation after they met with a Russian lawyer who offered damaging information on then-Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonFrustration boils over with Senate's 'legislative graveyard' Poll: Nearly half of Clinton's former supporters back Biden Harris readies a Phase 2 as she seeks to rejuvenate campaign MORE. The special counsel later ruled against making the charge because he didn’t think he had enough evidence.

Mueller nevertheless said in the report that the presence of officials like former campaign Paul ManafortPaul John ManafortBanker charged for allegedly approving Manafort loans for Trump job House Democrat 'fixed' Trump's infographic about Mueller's investigation Michael Caputo eyes congressional bid MORE and Trump’s son-in-law Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerTrump pushing for GOP donor's company to get border wall contract: report Trump family members will join state visit to UK Top Palestinian negotiator: Trump wants our surrender MORE signaled that the campaign was hoping to benefit from the information.

Raskin said that the Russians didn’t ultimately need members of the the Trump campaign to undermine the 2016 election.

“From the standpoint of Vladimir Putin, they didn’t really need Donald Trump Jr.Donald (Don) John TrumpTrump Jr. slams Republican committee chairman: 'Too weak to stand up to the Democrats' #TrumpTantrum spreads on Twitter after impromptu press conference Trump family members will join state visit to UK MORE and Eric TrumpEric Frederick TrumpTrump family members will join state visit to UK New financial disclosure forms provide glimpses of Trump's wealth De Blasio blasts Trump as he launches 2020 bid: 'Every New Yorker knows he's a con artist' MORE in order to pursue their conspiracy against the American election, they were perfectly capable of undermining us on their own and they did,” he told Hill.TV.

Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have said they want to concentrate on securing the 2020 election from Russian interference and have already set some measures in motion. 

Last year, Reps. Tom RooneyThomas (Tom) Joseph RooneyHouse Dem calls on lawmakers to 'insulate' election process following Mueller report Hill-HarrisX poll: 76 percent oppose Trump pardoning former campaign aides Dems fear Trump is looking at presidential pardons MORE (R-Fla.), Trey GowdyHarold (Trey) Watson GowdyHouse Dem calls on lawmakers to 'insulate' election process following Mueller report Democrats put harassment allegations against Trump on back burner Democrats seize on Mueller-Barr friction MORE (R-S.C.), Jim HimesJames (Jim) Andres HimesHouse Democrat 'fixed' Trump's infographic about Mueller's investigation House Dem calls on lawmakers to 'insulate' election process following Mueller report Dem lawmaker: There isn't a crime Trump could commit that would cause GOP to turn on him MORE (D-Conn.) and Terri SewellTerrycina (Terri) Andrea SewellCongress: Support legislation to defend Medicare home health  House Dem calls on lawmakers to 'insulate' election process following Mueller report Dems counter portrait of discord MORE (D-Ala.) introduced the Secure Elections Act. The legislation is aimed at helping states secure the nation’s digital election infrastructure against cyberattacks. A companion to the measure is making its way through the Senate.

Both measures were introduced to Congress in direct response to the effort by Russian hackers to target state voting systems during the 2016 election.

—Tess Bonn