The chairwoman of the Federal Election Commission, Ellen Weintraub, said her agency needs to overcome its reputation as a “toothless tiger” and help crackdown on Russia and other foreign governments to make sure their interference in American elections “doesn’t happen again.”
It has taken “far too long” to get the commission to approve rules requiring disclosure of who is behind political ads posted on social media, Weintraub said in an interview on the program “Brian Ross Investigates” on the Law&Crime Network.
Broadcast TV ads are required to identify who paid for the ad, but that is not the case for ads posted on Facebook and other social media platforms.
Weintraub said she is pushing for the FEC to be more aggressive in going after foreign efforts to influence voters. “We can’t throw anybody in jail,” she said. “On the other hand we don’t have to prove things beyond a reasonable doubt. It’s a lower standard of proof.”
Weintraub, a Democrat, became chair of the commission in January. The position rotates every year between the six members of the commission, half Republicans and half Democrats.
She says she hopes her Republican counterparts will understand the urgency of new rules to prevent another Russia attack on the election process.
“I am going to do my darndest to try and bring us to a place where we can agree and can strengthen our rules,” Weintraub said.
[image via screengrab/Law&Crime Network]