U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) today blocked an effort by Senate Democrats to bypass regular order, shutdown public debate, and force Senate passage of legislation related to information gathered during campaigns.

“Trying to rush this bill through the Senate is a clear indication that this unanimous consent is just another political sideshow ploy for headlines,” said Hyde-Smith, who serves on the Senate Rules Committee.

Hyde-Smith objected to a second attempt by Democrats to use unanimous consent to pass legislation requiring campaigns to report any offers of foreign assistance or information to federal authorities.

“No American wants foreign governments or other bad actors to interfere with our democratic process, but I believe very strongly that such an important issue should be addressed in the right way—with complete transparency.  The Rules Committee should have an opportunity to study and hold hearings on any legislation that attempts to place a value on information and then criminalize how it’s handled,” Hyde-Smith said.

Current campaign finance law prohibits foreign nationals without green cards to make contributions, expenditures, disbursements, or independent expenditures in any election.  The Democratic proposal (S.1247) would expand prohibited expenditures to include “any information regarding any of the other candidates for election for that office that is not in the public domain and which could be used to the advantage of the campaign of the candidate.”