House Dems unveil election security, voting measures in sweeping anti-corruption bill

House Democrats on Friday unveiled several election security measures as part of their first sweeping legislation of the session.

The bill, H.R. 1, or the For the People Act, mandates that states use paper ballots in elections, which must also be hand-counted, or by “optical character recognition device,” the bill states.

Rep. John SarbanesJohn Peter Spyros SarbanesThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the Air Line Pilots Association - Progress slow on coronavirus bill The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the Air Line Pilots Association - Biden VP possible next week; Meadows says relief talks 'miles apart' Pelosi, Democrats press case for mail-in voting amid Trump attacks MORE (D-Md.) introduced the legislation, which he and other Democrats have described as a comprehensive anti-corruption package that will set the tone for their time in control of the House.

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The bill will also allow the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) — the small federal agency tasked with helping officials carry out elections — to hand out funding to states for the improvement of their elections systems.

The Department of Homeland Security would also be required to conduct a threat assessment ahead of elections and that voting systems be tested nine months before any national election.

And the legislation creates security standards for voting machine vendors, including that they must be owned by a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. The EAC has had voluntary voting system guidelines for vendors in place.

There are also several provisions included on helping Americans to vote, like offering online voter registration, shoring up the Voting Rights Act and ending voter roll purges.

While the bill has a decent chance of moving through the House, where Democrats hold the majority, it may face a more difficult path to passage in the GOP-controlled Senate.

The Senate is also home to the now-dead Secure Elections Act, sponsored by Sens. Amy KlobucharAmy KlobucharLobbying world Biden should pick the best person for the job — not the best woman House committee requests hearing with postmaster general amid mail-in voting concerns MORE (D-Minn.) and James LankfordJames Paul LankfordSenate GOP opens door to smaller coronavirus deal as talks lag Ballooning Fed balance sheet sparks GOP concerns  The Hill's Coronavirus Report: Rep. Lauren Underwood says Americans face economic crisis if Senate fails to act on unemployment benefits extension; US surpasses 4 million cases, 1,000+ deaths for third straight day MORE (R-Okla.), aimed at securing election systems from cyberattacks. The senators have said they will reintroduce the legislation this legislative session.

Congress failed to pass any election security legislation after Russia was determined to have interfered in the 2016 presidential election.

Director of National Intelligence Dan CoatsDaniel (Dan) Ray CoatsTrump flails as audience dwindles and ratings plummet America's divide widens: Ignore it no longer Trump gives Grenell his Cabinet chair after he steps down MORE said late last month that Russia conducted influence campaigns targeting the 2018 midterms, but that there were no compromises of U.S. election systems.