Honest Ads Act to target foreign interference in U.S. elections

(Photo: WKRN)

WASHINGTON, DC (WKRN) – A new bill introduced in the U.S. Senate would monitor online political ads. The Honest Ads Act aims to prevent foreign interference in U.S. elections and make online political ads more transparent.

Our next federal election is 383 days away. Minnesota Democratic Denator Amy Klobuchar says when Americans go to the polls, they should know that Russians – or any other foreign agents – aren’t meddling with the outcome.

Sen. Klobuchar says, “They tried it once and they will do it again.”

Klobuchar and Virginia Democratic Senator Mark Warner introduced the “Honest Ads Act”.

The goal is to make it obvious when foreign powers pay for political ads on social media.

Sen. Warner says, “A candidate or somebody who is running against me ought to be able to have the ability to go and at least look at the content of the ads that are being run for or against any individual campaign.”

Ads on TV, radio or print have to make it clear who is paying for them, so this bill would set the same standards for online ads.

The founder of Facebook agrees. Mark Zuckerberg says, “ I don’t want anyone to use our tools to undermine democracy.”

Zuckerberg recently released a video saying Facebook is now actively filtering its website.

The company says it found ads linked to fake accounts, likely run from Russia, that sought to influence the 2016 presidential election.

“Any attempted interference is a serious issue,” says Zuckerberg

Representatives from Facebook, Google and Twitter plan to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee on November 1st