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MORGAN GRIFFITH: Are Biden Agencies His New Campaign Tool?

The Committee on House Administration I serve on is trying to protect our elections, investigate weaknesses, and restore election integrity and voter confidence in our elections.

Last year I introduced H.R. 4460, the NO VOTE for Non-Citizens Act, requiring only eligible American citizens to participate in federal elections. The bill withholds some federal dollars that go to localities that allow non-citizens to vote in their elections.

Washington, DC and New York City are examples where non-citizen voting in local elections is being advocated.

I was one of six Members of the House who voted to send the Safeguard American Voter Eligibility (SAVE) Act to the full House for consideration. This bill prohibits non-citizens from voting by requiring states to obtain proof of citizenship when registering individuals to vote.

Further, the Committee explored the influence of “Zuckerbucks” on elections, where private entities funded voter mobilization efforts. An investigation showed that Democrat-likely districts received 90% of “Zuckerbucks” awarded, whereas Republican-likely jurisdictions obtained 10%.

Last week, the Committee issued subpoenas to fifteen Biden Cabinet officials requesting documents related to a March 2021 Biden Administration Executive Order on Promoting Access to Voting.

The subpoenas target officials from various federal agencies, including the Department of Commerce, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services, among others.

According to a Roll Call article, Executive Order 14019 instructs executive agencies to create strategic plans to partner with local officials:

“to protect and promote the exercise of the right to vote, eliminate discrimination and other barriers to voting, and expand access to voter registration and accurate election information.”

That statement looks noble on its face. And the federal government does have a role in protecting the exercise of the right to vote, eliminating discrimination and voting barriers. But it should not have a role in pushing people to exercise their rights, or in deciding what is “accurate election information.”

Again “accurate election information” sounds noble and benign on its face. But is it?

I don’t know!

Why don’t we know?

Because the Administration will not willingly hand over what their agencies are doing under Executive Order 14019. This information was requested in early 2022. Outside groups have tried to get information. But the Biden Administration will not tell the American people what they are doing in regards to voter registration and “accurate election information” under the Order.

One must assume they have something to hide.

While I could be wrong, I fear that Biden’s phrasing of “accurate election information” really means the government is going to decide what is misinformation in the upcoming Presidential election.

We have already seen the government trying to tell us what is accurate and what is misinformation during COVID-19 and currently on the southern border. Freedom of the press means freedom, not government manipulation or control of non-classified information.

While Congress passed the “Motor Voter” National Voter Registration Act in 1993, it was limited to specific areas but NOT voter turnout and “accuracy of information.”

In this case, Congress has not debated or passed any legislation delegating specific or explicit authority to these executive agencies. Particularly, authority related to pushing voter turnout in various regions and making determinations on “election information accuracy.”

Any activity by these agencies to directly or secretly affect the election is wrong.

How can Americans have confidence in their elections if federal government agencies are ordered by one candidate (Biden) to seemingly use the power of the federal government to turn out the people they want to vote?

I am a believer that everyone should get out to vote. I have never failed to vote in an election where I was eligible.

It is the role of activists to encourage everyone to vote. Government agencies, however, should not be directly involved in what is essentially a campaign activity. It is unacceptable for any administration to use their government agencies to push targeted areas to go to vote.

Accordingly, I wonder how agency plans will affect rural areas. Are rural areas even considered in these federal government strategic plans? Or are federal agency campaigns focused on urban areas, where more Biden and Democrat votes tend to be concentrated?

As we saw with “Zuckerbucks”, rural areas did not receive a fair shake.

Without full disclosure, this Biden Executive Order feels to me like it serves a similar purpose.

Congress is entitled to answers and the Administration must account for what it is doing with taxpayer dollars to perhaps influence this year’s Presidential election.

  • Congressman Morgan Griffith

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