Legislation & policy analysis

With the release of Russian Facebook ads, the debate is over: Congress must pass the Honest Ads Act

  • William Gray

In response to the release of thousands of Russian Facebook ads to the American public, Issue One Executive Director Meredith McGehee issued the following statement:

“If online ad disclosure requirements had been law, we would have already seen these ads in near real-time and that some were paid for in rubles. And law enforcement officials would have seen they were illegal because spending foreign money in U.S. elections is illegal. The bipartisan Honest Ads Act would directly address this loophole.

With the release of these ads, the debate is over. Hostile foreign powers led by Russia interfered in American politics by peddling propaganda aimed at affecting election outcomes in 2016.

The questions now are: When will the Congress act and will this White House use the bully pulpit to push reasonable solutions backed by Republicans, Democrats and requested by some of America’s largest technology companies? Members of Congress each have an obligation to protect the country’s political process and ensure American discourse is not hijacked. The Honest Ads Act is the best first step to protect our elections.”

Learn more about the Honest Ads Act which is sponsored by more than a dozen House Republicans and Democrats, and supported by Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft and IBM