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Senate Passes Peters Bipartisan Legislation to Help Prevent Foreign Influence in U.S. Policy

WASHINGTON, DC – The Senate passed bipartisan legislation authored by U.S. Senator Gary Peters (MI), Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, to improve our nation’s ability to prevent foreign governments, including adversaries like the Chinese and Russian governments, from attempting to influence U.S. policy without making appropriate disclosures. The legislation would help prevent lobbyists working on behalf of foreign governments and political parties from exploiting an existing Foreign Agent Registration Act (FARA) provision that exempts Lobbying Disclosure Act registrants who are agents of foreign persons or organizations from registering under FARA.

“Foreign influence in our nation’s political process presents a serious national security threat,” said Senator Peters. “This bipartisan bill will shine a light on nefarious foreign lobbying practices and ensure that the government is working in the best interest of Americans and Michiganders – not our foreign adversaries.”

The Lobbying Disclosure Improvement Act would require Lobbying Disclosure Act registrants to indicate, as part of their registration, whether they are taking advantage of the FARA exemption. This would help the Department of Justice narrow the pool of Lobbying Disclosure Act registrants they are examining for potential violations, while not imposing any meaningful additional burden on registrants.

In his role on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Peters has also worked to ensure government is effectively serving the American people. His bipartisan legislation to help identify and mitigate potential conflicts of interest between taxpayer-funded projects and government contractors’ other business opportunities will soon be signed into law. A law written by Peters to reduce duplicative software purchases called the MEGABYTE Act has saved taxpayers more than $450 million since 2016.