This Is Not What Democracy Looks Like

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal, and Emir of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani in Doha, Qatar / AP

Foreign governments and their citizens are forbidden from contributing to U.S. elections. If a foreign government hires a lobbyist to influence the legislative or executive branches of the United States, that lobbyist must disclose his contracts and activities with the Justice Department in compliance with the Foreign Agents Registration Act. FARA is so strict that it applies not only to lobbyists, but to any American who works within the United States to influence our politics on behalf of a foreign interest. Break the law, and you go to jail.