BY THE VILLAGE SUN | Dan Goldman, a candidate in the District 10 congressional primary, last week unveiled what he’s dubbing “A Five-Point Plan To Defend Our Democracy.”
Among its bold proposals, the plan calls for abolishing the Electoral College, term-limiting Supreme Court justices, limiting presidential pardon power and “exposing the lie” that widepread voter fraud exists.
Goldman was the lead counsel for the first impeachment investigation, in 2019, of former President Donald Trump for abusing his office for his personal interest regarding Ukraine. After fomenting last year’s violent Jan 6. insurrection, trying to stop the election’s certification, Trump is now reportedly readying to announce a bid to recapture the White House.
Goldman is running in the crowded District 10 Democratic primary on Tues., Aug. 23. The newly drawn district contains all of Manhattan south of 14th Street, plus parts of Brooklyn.
Fearing that Trump and the Republican Party he controls laying are the foundation to “interfere in the 2022 midterm election and steal the 2024 election,” Goldman says his plan would “prevent the subversion of our elections and restore the credibility and authority of co-equal branches of government.”
“Donald Trump and his Republican Party have exposed significant weaknesses in the very foundation of our democracy,” Goldman said. “January 6 was the beginning, not the end, of the threat to our fundamental rights. This moment demands that we take aggressive action to restore trust in our institutions and protect our free and fair elections.”
While working as counsel for the House Intelligence Committee, Goldman helped draft the Protecting Our Democracy Act to defend against abuses of power and protect the integrity of elections. His new five-point plan incorporates the principles of PODA and takes them further.
Goldman’s five-point democracy-defense plan is printed verbatim below:
1. Protect the Right of the People To Decide Elections
To protect the right to vote and ensure that voters — not politicians — decide our elections, we must:
Pass federal laws to prevent partisan elected officials from overturning the will of the people. Only courts should be permitted to adjudicate disputed election results.
Pass comprehensive election reforms to make voting easier and more accessible. We must also pass the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to protect against voter suppression.
Restore voting rights for felons who have served their time. Formerly incarcerated persons who have paid their debt to society should have the opportunity to participate in our democracy.
2. Ensure Fairness and Transparency in Our Elections
In order to preserve the fundamental principle of one person, one vote, we must minimize the influence of special interests and ensure fairness in the electoral process. We must:
Ban partisan gerrymandering. District lines must be drawn by independent commissions.
Eliminate the Electoral College so that we elect our president the same way we elect other officials across this country: by popular vote.
Reform campaign finance laws by passing the DISCLOSE Act and Honest Ads Act to make political activity and advertising fully transparent.
3. Restore Legitimacy to the Supreme Court
Public confidence in the Supreme Court is at a historic low, in part due to serious questions about justices’ truthfulness under oath and potential conflicts of interests. To restore legitimacy to the Court we must:
Establish term limits for Supreme Court justices and all federally appointed justices.
Apply the Code of Conduct for United States judges to Supreme Court justices to ensure they are beholden to a code of ethics like all other judges.
Expand Congress’s oversight authority of potential violations of the Code of Ethics, including through investigations of potential violations that would be reported to Congress.
4. Prevent Presidential Abuses of Power
The Trump presidency exposed the limits of traditional norms designed to hold the Office of the President accountable to Congress and to the American people. To prevent future presidential abuses of power we must:
Suspend the statute of limitations for federal offenses committed by presidents or vice presidents before or during their time in office.
Strengthen Congress’s subpoena power and ability to enforce subpoenas through inherent contempt.
Clarify the scope of executive privilege and provide for expedited review in the courts when privilege is invoked.
Limit the president’s pardon power and provide more transparency about presidential pardons.
5. Combat Foreign Interference and Domestic Disinformation
In recent years, our elections have been infiltrated by nefarious foreign actors and misleading domestic actors, both of which spread disinformation to interfere in our electoral process. To ensure our elections are free from foreign interference and domestic disinformation, we must:
Require campaign committees to report to the F.B.I. and F.E.C. [Federal Election Commission] any contacts by foreign governments or actors attempting to offer assistance to their campaign.
Make it a crime to intentionally make false statements about when, where and how people vote.
Launch a congressional investigation into purported voter fraud to expose the lie that widespread voter fraud exists.
Goldman’s congressional campaign raised more than $1.2 million from more than 2,100 individual contributions in the second quarter (April 1 to June 30). He has raised $41,000 per day since announcing his candidacy on June 1.
Goldman and his wife, Corinne, live in Tribeca where they are raising their five children. Goldman previously served for a decade as an assistant U.S. attorney in the Southern District of New York working with Preet Bharara.
In law school, Goldman contributed to Michelle Alexander’s book “The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarcertation in the Age of Colorblindness” (The New Press, 2012), which addressed the inequalities in America’s criminal justice system.