Republicans don’t want us to have nice things, like equal voting rights.
The GOP minority once again blocked the Democratic majority on Tuesday, as they filibustered debate on voting rights legislation, putting Democrats in a predicament about how to advance the high-priority bill. The vote to advance an amended version of the For The People Act split along party lines 50-50, short of the 60 needed. All Democrats voted to begin debate and Republicans unanimously voting to block the bill.
Democrats have been facing renewed pressure from their base to abolish the filibuster to push the bill through, but they don’t currently have the votes to do that. Manchin remains opposed to nuking the 60-vote rule, and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) reiterated her support for the super-majority threshold to pass bills in an opinion piece published Monday.
Before the vote, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer called the bill an effort to respond to restrictive voting laws in GOP-led states like Georgia and said the procedural vote was simply to allow debate and an amendment process that will shape the eventual bill.
The filibuster sure as hell ain’t more important than our voting rights.
— Scott Dworkin (@funder) June 22, 2021
“They don’t even want to debate it because they’re afraid. They want to deny the right to vote, make it harder to vote for so many Americans, and they don’t want to talk about it,” Schumer, D-N.Y., said on Tuesday. “There is a rot — a rot — at the center of the modern Republican party. Donald Trump’s big lie has spread like a cancer and threatens to envelop one of America’s major political parties.”
Vice President Kamala Harris, who has been tasked by the White House to work on voting rights, presided over the Tuesday debate in the Senate.
Every single Senate Republican voted against even starting debate on critical voting rights legislation.
Senate Republicans again signed their names alongside Trump, the Big Lie, voter suppression.
Make no mistake: The fight in the Senate to protect voting rights is not over.
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) June 22, 2021
The legislation is cosponsored by 49 Democratic members of the Senate. The one holdout, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), said Tuesday he’d vote to begin debate after receiving assurances that the Senate would consider a compromise version that he has said he can support.
“We’ll keep talking,” Manchin said after the vote. “You can’t give up. You really can’t.”
Remember when McConnell got rid of the filibuster to confirm Trump's nominees? Dems could do the same…but for voting rights.
If they don't, Senate Republicans will keep the Senate in gridlock, blame Democrats for it, then run on Democrats’ incompetence in the 2022 midterms.
— Robert Reich (@RBReich) June 22, 2021
Former President Barack Obama said Monday it was “not acceptable” for Republicans to block debate on the For The People Act “in the aftermath of an insurrection, with our democracy on the line.
[This is a breaking and developing story, please check back for updates]