Text: S.3116 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)All Information (Except Text)

There is one version of the bill.

Text available as:

Shown Here:
Introduced in Senate (06/21/2018)

[Congressional Bills 115th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[S. 3116 Introduced in Senate (IS)]


  2d Session
                                S. 3116

            To establish an Election Security grant program.



                             June 21, 2018

 Mr. Menendez introduced the following bill; which was read twice and 
         referred to the Committee on Rules and Administration


                                 A BILL

            To establish an Election Security grant program.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,


    This Act may be cited as the ``Protecting the Right to Independent 
and Democratic Elections Act'' or the ``PRIDE Voting Act''.


    (a) Establishment.--
            (1) In general.--There is hereby established an Election 
        Security grant program (in this section referred to as the 
        ``program'') under which the Secretary of Homeland Security 
        awards grants to States to carry out one of more of the 
        following activities:
                    (A) Implementing or improving the use of auditable 
                paper ballots in accordance with the requirements of 
                paragraph (2), including the updating of any voting 
                system in order to implement or improve the use of 
                auditable paper ballots.
                    (B) Conducting post-election risk limiting audits.
                    (C) Implementing cybersecurity standards and best 
                practices developed by the National Institute of 
                Standards and Technology, including frameworks, 
                consistent with section 2(c) of the National Institute 
                of Standards and Technology Act (15 U.S.C. 272(c)). In 
                implementing such standards and best practices, a State 
                shall, to the extent practicable, utilize CIS Controls 
                from the nonprofit Center for Internet Security 
                (formerly the 20 Critical Security Controls).
            (2) Paper ballot requirement.--
                    (A) Voter-verified paper ballots.--The requirements 
                described in this paragraph, with respect to the use of 
                paper ballots in a voting system, are the following:
                            (i) Paper ballot requirement.--(I) The 
                        voting system shall require the use of an 
                        individual, durable, voter-verified, paper 
                        ballot of the voter's vote that shall be marked 
                        and made available for inspection and 
                        verification by the voter before the voter's 
                        vote is cast and counted, and which shall be 
                        counted by hand or read by a digital scanning 
                        device or other counting device. For purposes 
                        of this subclause, the term ``individual, 
                        durable, voter-verified, paper ballot'' means a 
                        paper ballot marked by the voter by hand or a 
                        paper ballot marked through the use of a 
                        nontabulating ballot marking device or system.
                            (II) The voting system shall provide the 
                        voter with an opportunity to correct any error 
                        on the paper ballot before the permanent voter-
                        verified paper ballot is preserved in 
                        accordance with clause (ii).
                            (III) The voting system shall not preserve 
                        the voter-verified paper ballots in any manner 
                        that makes it possible, at any time after the 
                        ballot has been cast, to associate a voter with 
                        the record of the voter's vote.
                            (ii) Preservation as official record.--The 
                        individual, durable, voter-verified, paper 
                        ballot used in accordance with clause (i) shall 
                        constitute the official ballot and shall be 
                        preserved and used as the official ballot for 
                        purposes of any recount or audit conducted with 
                        respect to any election for Federal office in 
                        which the voting system is used.
                            (iii) Manual counting requirements for 
                        recounts and audits.--(I) Each paper ballot 
                        used pursuant to clause (i) shall be suitable 
                        for a manual audit, and shall be counted by 
                        hand in any recount or audit conducted with 
                        respect to any election for Federal office.
                            (II) In the event of any inconsistencies or 
                        irregularities between any electronic vote 
                        tallies and the vote tallies determined by 
                        counting by hand the individual, durable, 
                        voter-verified, paper ballots used pursuant to 
                        clause (i), and subject to subparagraph (B), 
                        the individual, durable, voter-verified, paper 
                        ballots shall be the true and correct record of 
                        the votes cast.
                            (iv) Clarification regarding use of grant 
                        funds.--Grant funds awarded to the State for 
                        the purposes described in paragraph (1)(A) 
                        shall not be used with respect to any form of 
                        remote ballot casting that results in an 
                        electronic transmission of a voted ballot.
                    (B) Special rule for treatment of disputes when 
                paper ballots have been shown to be compromised.--
                            (i) In general.--In the event that--
                                    (I) there is any inconsistency 
                                between any electronic vote tallies and 
                                the vote tallies determined by counting 
                                by hand the individual, durable, voter-
                                verified, paper ballots used pursuant 
                                to subparagraph (A)(i) with respect to 
                                any election for Federal office; and
                                    (II) it is demonstrated by clear 
                                and convincing evidence (as determined 
                                in accordance with the applicable 
                                standards in the jurisdiction involved) 
                                in any recount, audit, or contest of 
                                the result of the election that the 
                                paper ballots have been compromised (by 
                                damage or mischief or otherwise) and 
                                that a sufficient number of the ballots 
                                have been so compromised that the 
                                result of the election could be 
                        the determination of the appropriate remedy 
                        with respect to the election shall be made in 
                        accordance with applicable State law, except 
                        that the electronic tally shall not be used as 
                        the exclusive basis for determining the 
                        official certified result.
                            (ii) Rule for consideration of ballots 
                        associated with each voting machine.--For 
                        purposes of clause (i), only the paper ballots 
                        deemed compromised, if any, shall be considered 
                        in the calculation of whether or not the result 
                        of the election could be changed due to the 
                        compromised paper ballots.
            (3) Outside expert support.--A State may use grant funds 
        provided under the program to employ or contract with private 
        sector entities or individuals with expertise in information 
        technology or cybersecurity to carry out activities under the 
    (b) Duration.--
            (1) Initial period.--Except as provided in paragraph (2), 
        the program shall be carried out for a period of 5 years.
            (2) Additional period.--The Secretary may carry out the 
        program for an additional period of 5 years if the Secretary 
        determines, based on the report submitted under subsection 
        (d)(2), that the program is efficacious and such additional 
        period is appropriate.
    (c) Application.--
            (1) In general.--A State desiring a grant under this 
        section shall submit to the Secretary of Homeland Security an 
        application at such time, in such manner, and containing or 
        accompanied by such information, as the Secretary may 
        reasonably require.
            (2) Contents.--An application submitted under paragraph (1) 
        shall describe the activities for which a grant under this 
        section is sought.
    (d) Reports.--
            (1) Grantee reporting.--Not later than 1 year after the 
        execution of a grant agreement pursuant to this section, the 
        State shall submit to the Secretary a report on the activities 
        conducted with the funds provided, including information 
        regarding how and where such funds were spent and such 
        additional information as the Secretary determines is 
        appropriate for oversight of the program under this section.
            (2) Report to congress by the secretary.--Not later than 18 
        months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary 
        shall submit to the appropriate Congressional committees a 
        report on the program under this section, together with 
        recommendations for such legislation and administrative action 
        as the Secretary determines appropriate.
    (e) Indian Tribe Eligibility.--An Indian Tribe is eligible to apply 
for and receive a grant under this section in the same manner as a 
State, except that the Secretary may adjust any requirement under this 
section for an Indian Tribe to accomplish the purposes of this grant.
    (f) Definitions.--In this section:
            (1) Appropriate congressional committees.--The term 
        ``appropriate Congressional committees'' means--
                    (A) the Committee on Homeland Security and 
                Governmental Affairs, the majority leader, and the 
                minority leader of the Senate; and
                    (B) the Committee on Homeland Security, the 
                Speaker, and the minority leader of the House of 
            (2) Indian tribe.--The term ``Indian Tribe'' has the 
        meaning given the term ``Indian tribe'' in section 4 of the 
        Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (25 
        U.S.C. 5304).
            (3) Risk limiting audit.--The term ``risk limiting audit'' 
        means an audit protocol that makes use of statistical methods 
        and is designed to limit to acceptable levels the risk of 
        certifying a preliminary election outcome that constitutes an 
        incorrect outcome.
            (4) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary 
        of Homeland Security.
            (5) State.--The term ``State'' includes the District of 
        Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, American 
        Samoa, and the United States Virgin Islands.
            (6) Voting system.--The term ``voting system'' has the 
        meaning given that term in section 301(b) of the Help America 
        Vote Act of 2002 (52 U.S.C. 21081(b)).
    (g) Authorization of Appropriations.--To carry out this section, 
there is authorized to be appropriated $2,500,000,000 for the period of 
fiscal years 2019 through 2028. Amounts appropriated under the 
preceding sentence shall remain available until expended.