On a superficial level, foreign influence of our elections is obviously objectionable and should clearly be a serious crime, with serious penalties. But how does a country criminalize such an action by another country? Primarily by sanctions of various degrees of severity and length of time, I suppose.
However, we must not be hypocritical.
Wealthy American individuals, corporations, as well as the US Government itself has tried and at times been successful influencing elections in other countries. Shouldn’t this be a crime, too?
Further, what constitutes “influence”? Advertising? Editorial writing? Speeches? Money? “Information”?
What of the fake news perpetrated by users of social media like Facebook?
How is “influence” measured?
It’s a messy business that will be difficult to prove and even proportional penalties will certainly involve dire and unintended consequences for the citizens of countries with governments of questionable ethics.
It’s is much clearer to deal with cyber crimes related to elections — stealing political parties’ emails, directly interfering with polling systems, etc.
Likewise, conspiring with foreign agents to influence an election should be a crime. But how to define it and how to prove it is a significant crime.