WASHINGTON — The House passed the Democrats’ showcase anti-corruption and voting rights legislation on Friday, an expansive measure that aims to dismantle barriers to the ballot box, end big money in politics and impose stricter ethics rules on federal officials.
The sweeping legislation, passed 234-193, makes good on the campaign pledge to clean up Washington that helped catapult Democrats into the majority. It also serves as a campaign platform for Democrats ahead of 2020. It has virtually no chance of passing the Senate.
“It’s a power grab for the American people,” said Representative Zoe Lofgren of California, who leads the House administration committee that shepherded the legislation.
The ambitious compendium, at nearly 700 pages, includes proposals designating Election Day as a federal holiday, automatically registering citizens to vote, and restoring voting rights to people who have served felony sentences. It also creates a six-to-one matching system for donations of up to $200 to congressional and presidential candidates who reject high-dollar contributions, funded by an additional fine on corporations found to have broken the law.