A major Senate committee is expected to vote as soon as Tuesday to proceed Reform of the sweeping elections for the Democrats, Sealed its approval of a historic expansion of voting rights as Washington tries to ease voting restrictions by the role of the Republican-controlled country.
The anticipated debate and vote in the Senate Rules Committee is a milestone for the liberals who drafted the bill, HR 1, On top of their legislative priority. If enacted, it would effectively nullify laws arising in countries such as Georgia And the Florida That raises barriers to voting with national requirements – such as automatic voter registration, early voting without excuse, mail voting and re-voting for ex-criminals – with the goal of reducing them.
But any victory this week could be fleeting. With Republicans digging to oppose the 800-page bill and even some Democrats expressing reservations about his approach, the path to an evenly divided Senate Chamber is not at all clear. (Bill Already passed the house.)
In the short term, Democratic leaders plan to put pressure on Republicans to bring them to the negotiating table. They intend to introduce a series of amendments during a panel discussion aimed at stoking political anger over Republican attempts to curtail the vote, including an amendment by Senator John Usov of Georgia that would lift his state’s ban on providing snacks or water to voters stranded in long lines. .
“Our fellow Republicans face a critical choice: between working with Democrats in good faith to pass a law to protect our democracy or standing with Republican state legislatures that are organizing the largest curtailment of voting rights in decades,” said Senator Chuck Schumer, a Democrat from New York and the majority leader, on Monday. Monday.
Democrats will also propose technical and substantive adjustments during Tuesday’s session to address concerns raised primarily by state election officials who complained that some voting provisions would be too expensive or cumbersome to implement. For now, though, they’re not planning to remove any of the bill’s main pillars, which also includes New strict ethical requirements for the White House and Congress, An end to partisan manipulation in congressional districts, and new disclosure requirements for dark money pools.
In secret, Democrats acknowledge that bipartisan support is unrealistic, given that Republicans in Congress denounced the bill as a liberal grab of power that would make it harder to win the election. They defended their counterparts in the state, saying the new laws would clamp down on fraud of the kind that former President Donald J Trump falsely claimed plagued the 2020 contest.
They are ready to offer dozens of amendments that attempt to strike or draw attention to provisions they see as particularly objectionable. Both parties said discussion of the amendment could push the final vote on the bill until Wednesday morning.
Senator Roy Blunt of Missouri, the highest Republican member of the committee, intended to say, “This is a bad bill, full of bad policies that create problems, not solutions.” We should focus on making voting easier and cheating more difficult. Unfortunately, the bill presented to us makes it easy to fraud and hard to spot. “
Liberal activists are applying intense pressure on Democrats to change Senate rules to allow it to pass by a simple majority, instead of the 60 votes currently required to break the blockage. Senator Joe Mansheen III, a Democrat from West Virginia, has so far rejected this approach. He has called for narrower legislation focusing on expanding early voting procedures and polling security, and is insisting he will not vote to change Senate rules on disruptions.
Democratic senators plan to meet in private on Thursday afternoon to discuss how to proceed, according to Democratic officials. Supporters of the bill fear that if Congress does not act quickly, there will be no time to implement the changes before 2022.
At least some senators appear ready to make sweeping changes if needed to win the support of Mr. Manchin and other reluctant Democrats. One of them, Senator Tim Kane of Virginia, said the stakes would be “existential” if the Democrats fail.
“If we can’t unite behind it, I think there will be some tough decisions to maybe put aside parts of it,” Mr. Kane said in an interview.