Politics Senate Republicans unanimously vote down voting rights legislation, teeing up a fight over the filibuster

05:16  20 january  2022
05:16  20 january  2022 Source:   businessinsider.com

Biden to amp up the pressure on the Senate to change filibuster rules for voting rights during Atlanta speech

  Biden to amp up the pressure on the Senate to change filibuster rules for voting rights during Atlanta speech President Joe Biden is traveling to Atlanta on Tuesday to deliver a major speech on voting rights, looking to turn up the heat on reluctant senators as Democrats face pressure to pass two pieces of pending legislation opposed by nearly all Republicans on Capitol Hill. © DREW ANGERER/POOL/AFP via Getty Images US President Joe Biden speaks at the US Capitol on January 6, 2022, to mark the anniversary of the attack on the Capitol in Washington, DC. - Thousands of supporters of then-president Donald Trump stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021, in a bid to prevent the certification of Biden's election victory.

Senate Democrats failed again to pass sweeping new voting protections on Wednesday, in what may be the most brutal blow yet to efforts strengthen protections for voters at a perilous moment for US democracy. In a clear rebuke to Biden, Sinema gave a speech on the Senate floor last week making it clear she would not support changes to the filibuster . Manchin has also consistently made his support clear. The bill that failed on Wednesday, Freedom to Vote : John R Lewis Act, combined two major voting rights bills into a single mega bill.

(CNN) Senate Republicans are expected to once again block a voting bill put forward by Democrats in the latest partisan showdown over voting rights , an issue Democrats are seeking to spotlight despite the fact that they lack the votes to pass the legislation . The Senate is on track to hold a vote A vote to change the rules has not yet been scheduled but could happen as soon as late Wednesday evening. But Democrats do not have the votes to change Senate filibuster rules either with moderate Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona expected to oppose

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, speaks to the media after Senate Democrats met privately with President Joe Biden, Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, on Capitol Hill in Washington AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana © AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, speaks to the media after Senate Democrats met privately with President Joe Biden, Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022, on Capitol Hill in Washington AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana
  • Senate Republicans unanimously voted against a major Democratic voting rights bill on Wednesday.
  • Senate Democratic leadership is expected to hold a vote to change the Senate filibuster rules.
  • That effort, however, will also likely fail due to opposition from Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema.

Senate Republicans on Wednesday voted down a major Democratic voting rights bill by opposing an effort to bring the bill itself to a vote, setting up a showdown among Senate Democrats over whether they will unilaterally change the Senate's filibuster rules in order to pass the legislation as President Joe Biden has demanded.

Chuck Schumer Plans to Show Joe Manchin, Kyrsten Sinema Why to Change Filibuster Rules

  Chuck Schumer Plans to Show Joe Manchin, Kyrsten Sinema Why to Change Filibuster Rules The Senate's top Democrat has laid out his plan to bring voting rights legislation to the Senate floor, which could set up a vote on changing the filibuster.A memo sent by Schumer to Senate Democrats Wednesday lays out how he plans to sidestep procedures that have been used by Republicans to block consideration of voting rights legislation. The Senate requires 60 votes to initiate debate on most bills, which has been a stumbling block for Democrats as they've sought to advance voting rights legislation in the evenly divided chamber.

WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans filibustered debate on voting rights legislation Tuesday, putting Democrats in a predicament about how to advance their 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 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-Ariz., reiterated her support for the super-majority threshold to pass bills

"And if Republicans choose to continue to filibuster voting rights legislation , we must consider and vote on rule changes that are appropriate and necessary to restore the Senate and make voting legislation possible." © ABC News Sen. Joe Manchin made it clear Tuesday evening that he remains opposed to changing the filibuster rule to pass voting rights . "I don't know how you break a rule to make a rule," Manchin said when asked about changing the rules. Manchin shot down a possible "talking filibuster " proposal that would see senators debating legislation on the floor with a

Senate Democrats began 2022 with a full-throttle push to pass federal voting rights legislation in response to GOP-controlled states passing bills restricting voting and election administration. But they've continued to run up against unified Republican opposition to the voting measures, and dissent over filibuster reform from within their own ranks.

Republicans used Senate rules that require 60 senators to bring most legislation to a vote — where it can pass with a simple majority — to block the "Freedom To Vote: John R. Lewis Act." The measure combines The Freedom to Vote Act, a sprawling voting rights and democracy reform package, and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, a bill that restores and refortifies key components of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 that the federal courts have struck down or weakened.

Protecting voting rights isn’t enough to save democracy

  Protecting voting rights isn’t enough to save democracy Election law expert Richard L. Hasen on the problem of election subversion — and what can be done to stop it.The rejection of the legitimacy of the 2020 election by many Republicans has fueled widespread, state-level voter suppression campaigns and a growing effort to subvert America’s election system.

Senate Republicans blocked debate on sweeping federal voting rights legislation backed by President Biden on Wednesday, in a move likely to renew calls among some Democratic leaders to alter filibuster rules. The Senate voted 49-51 on whether to take up the "Freedom to Vote Act Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, switched his vote to a "nay," in a procedural move that will allow him to submit the legislation for a re- vote . The result marked the third time this year that Republicans have blocked the legislation , which Democrats have supported in response to the

The Senate officially took up Democrats’ voting rights bill, which passed the House in a party-line vote last week. The proposal is expected to fail in the Senate after Democrats Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema made it clear that they would not support changing the filibuster to allow for the bill’s passage. More than 1,200 students in Oakland, California, signed a petition saying they would stay home starting today over coronavirus safety concerns. The protest is one of several student-led efforts around the country, indicating growing frustrations amid public school children even as the Biden

Congressional Democrats deployed creative procedural hijinks to fast-track consideration of the bill and ensure that the measure, unlike three previous voting rights bills considered by the Senate in 2021, would get a debate on the Senate floor.

House Democrats used an unrelated NASA leasing bill as a legislative vehicle by stripping its text and replacing it with the contents of the two voting bills, which the House passed along party lines on Thursday morning.

Under the current Senate filibuster rules, most legislation needs 60 votes to proceed to debate. But because the underlying NASA legislation had already been considered by both the House and the Senate, it was considered a "message" between chambers and therefore only needed a simple majority of 51 votes to advance to debate.

The legislation itself, however, still needed a 60-vote majority to end debate and proceed to a final vote in the Senate. And after several hours of debate on the Senate floor, all 50 Senate Republicans voted against ending debate on the bill on Wednesday.

Kyrsten Sinema’s opposition to filibuster reform rests on a myth

  Kyrsten Sinema’s opposition to filibuster reform rests on a myth Senate rules are fostering obstruction — not bipartisanship.As Norm Ornstein, a political scientist at the American Enterprise Institute, has emphasized, however, the belief that the filibuster fuels bipartisanship is one of many myths about the rule. The filibuster requires most bills to get 60 votes in order to proceed in the Senate, but it’s often used as a tool to obstruct legislation, not foster it.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Tuesday that Democrats will seek a carveout to the filibuster rule to pass voting rights legislation by replacing the current 60- vote threshold needed to break a filibuster with an old-fashioned "talking filibuster ." The election reform bill at hand in the Senate would make Election Day a federal holiday, expand early voting and mail-in- voting , and give the federal government greater oversight over state elections. And would come at a time when nearly 20 states have restricted access to voting fueled by false claims in the wake of the 2020 election

A showdown over the filibuster has loomed over the first 100 days of the Biden administration, but during the next 100 days, it’s clear that a showdown over getting rid of the procedure is unavoidable. Amanda Litman, the executive director of the Run for Something, a group that recruits candidates for state legislative races, told me this week she thinks some Democrats still don’t fully appreciate how dangerous and consequential the GOP’s “If the Senate does not kill the filibuster and pass voting rights reforms … Democrats are going to lose control of the House and likely the Senate forever.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer will now hold a vote on changes to the Senate filibuster rules to secure the passage of voting rights legislation. Schumer will now begin the process of invoking the so-called "nuclear option" to seek to change the chamber's filibuster rules along party lines; its name derives from those who view it as an extreme workaround on Senate rules.

Normally, changes to the Senate rules require a two-thirds majority to pass. But under Senate procedure, Senate leaders can invoke the nuclear option to change the filibuster with a simple majority. The Senate previously invoked the nuclear option to lower the threshold for executive branch and federal court nominees to a simple majority in 2013 and then again in 2017 for Supreme Court nominees.

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-WVa., speaks to the media after senate democrats luncheon, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022 AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana © AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana Sen. Joe Manchin, D-WVa., speaks to the media after senate democrats luncheon, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022 AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

Democrats face an uphill battle to change the Senate filibuster.

Substantial changes to the filibuster remain unlikely due to lack of unity on the matter within the Democratic caucus and, in particular, Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona's continued opposition to major reforms.

As voting rights push fizzles, Biden's failure to unite his own party looms again

  As voting rights push fizzles, Biden's failure to unite his own party looms again Sens. Kyrsten Sinema and Joe Manchin, both Democrats, said Thursday they were against filibuster changes, spoiling Biden's efforts to pass voting rights.On Thursday, Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, an Arizona Democrat, dealt a potentially fatal blow to Biden’s renewed push for federal voting rights legislation. In a surprise speech on the Senate floor, she flatly rejected Biden’s plea – issued less than 48 hours earlier – to change the filibuster rules so Democrats could muscle through the voting rights bill without any Republican votes.

On Thursday, President Biden paid a special visit to Capitol Hill to lobby Senate Democrats on voting rights and filibuster changes.

But Biden was partly upstaged by Sinema, who took to the Senate floor before his visit for a rare public speech throwing a bucket of ice water on changing the 60-vote threshold, which she said has a "role in protecting our country from wild reversals from federal policy."

"These bills help treat the symptoms of the disease, but they do not fully address the disease itself," she said of the voting rights measures. "And while I continue to support these bills, I will not support separate actions that worsen the underlying disease of division infecting our country."

Biden's appeals to Manchin, a longtime staunch supporter of the current 60-vote filibuster threshold, also fell flat.

"The Senate's greatest rule is the one that's unwritten. This is an unwritten rule and it's the greatest one we have: it's the rule of self-restraint, which have very little of anymore," Manchin said Wednesday on the Senate floor. "The rule will be broken along with the cloture rule if the nuclear option is executed, and to that, I cannot be a party."

Both Manchin and Sinema are thus likely to oppose Schumer's plan for a one-time rules change that would require Republicans to sustain a talking filibuster in order to block the voting rights bill.

​​Democrats make voting rights push ahead of Senate consideration

  ​​Democrats make voting rights push ahead of Senate consideration Democrats made a full-throated push for voting rights legislation on Sunday as the Senate prepares to take up election reform this week, setting the scene for a high stakes battle after two centrist Democrats announced last week that they will not support a rules change to approve voting rights reform amid GOP opposition.The Senate is slated to begin consideration of a House-passed voting rights bill on Tuesday. Republicans are expected to block the bill itself, leading Democrats into uncharted territory where they will be forced to face intra-party differences regarding the legislative filibuster. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.

A talking filibuster would require a senator or group of senators in opposition to speak continuously on the Senate floor to block legislation, making a filibuster more onerous but also potentially grinding to a halt all other work before the chamber.

But due to Manchin and Sinema's opposition to lowering the 60-vote cloture threshold, Senate Democrats are far from reaching a consensus on filibuster reform changes, leaving the chances of voting rights legislation overcoming unanimous opposition from all Senate Republicans are slim to none.

The failure is yet another major setback not just for congressional Democrats but for the Biden White House. Biden, whose economic agenda is still indefinitely stalled in the Senate, has faced mounting, open frustration from voting rights advocates for the lack of progress on voting rights legislation at the federal level.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Democrats have had enough of Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s obstruction .
Sinema’s political future is murky after her filibuster vote.Sinema, along with Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV), spurned a Democratic effort to restore the talking filibuster for voting rights legislation in order to pass the Freedom To Vote and John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement acts, and the effort ultimately failed by a vote of 48 to 52 on Wednesday.

usr: 0
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