Legislation & policy analysis

Issue One praises new bipartisan proposal to bring transparency to foreign-backed social media content

Today, Reps. Abigail Spanberger (D-VA) and John Katko (R-NY) introduced H.R. 8464, the bipartisan Foreign Agent Disclaimer Enhancement (FADE) Act. The bill would require political social media content to include disclaimers if it’s produced or transmitted by foreign adversaries or their agents. In response, Issue One Executive Director Meredith McGehee issued the following statement:

“Year after year, national security experts confirm that foreign adversaries are using social media, in addition to paid advertising, to spread disinformation meant to disrupt our political system. These activities cause Americans to distrust our democratic process.

“The bipartisan Foreign Agent Disclaimer Enhancement (FADE) Act would take necessary steps toward stopping unpaid foreign-backed disinformation from influencing the American public. Issue One commends Representatives Spanberger and Katko for introducing this much-needed legislation and calls on Congress to expeditiously address these threats.

“Representatives Spanberger and Katko have already endorsed the Honest Ads Act, which prohibits our foreign adversaries from interfering in our elections through paid political advertisements online. This new bill would buttress the Honest Ads Act and get to another important aspect of foreign-backed disinformation, unpaid online communications. 

“Together, the Honest Ads Act and Foreign Agent Disclaimer Enhancement Act offer a robust, two-pronged approach to help prevent foreign adversaries from meddling in our elections.”