Scholars urge Senate to pause filibuster, pass voting rights protections

“Defenders of democracy in America still have a slim window of opportunity to act. But time is ticking away, and midnight is approaching,” in accordance to greater than 150 high students of U.S. democracy in a brand new push to quickly droop the Senate filibuster and pass voting rights protections on a easy majority vote.

Driving the information: Their unified entrance comes amid a brief break within the legislative motion on Capitol Hill, with the beginning of the Thanksgiving recess and after the House passage of President Biden’s “Build Back Better” social spending bundle.

  • When Congress returns, it’s going to be scrambling to avert a authorities shutdown, elevate the debt ceiling and pass the annual protection authorization invoice.
  • And Democrats will probably be making an attempt to hold BBB alive within the Senate, the place only one skeptic of their bare-majority ranks — similar to West Virginia’s Joe Manchin — may have the facility to sink it.

What they’re saying: Those challenges should not distract from the urgency of passing the compromise Freedom to Vote Act earlier than midterm elections start, the group says in its public letter.

  • Written by students from Duke to Stanford universities, it touches on former President Trump’s “Big Lie” and a few GOP efforts to empower political officers to overturn legit election outcomes.
  • “The partisan politicization of what has long been trustworthy, non-partisan administration of elections represents a clear and present threat to the future of electoral democracy in the United States.”
  • Doing nothing would undermine free and honest elections and “likely result in an extended period of minority rule, which a majority of the country would reject as undemocratic and illegitimate,” the letter says.

Between the traces: Manchin is the one senator most definitely to resolve whether or not Democrats do droop the legislative filibuster, not less than on this one case.

  • The Freedom to Vote Act was truly Manchin’s reply to a voting rights enlargement by Democrats. But Republicans used the filibuster final month to block his compromise from advancing.
  • The invoice included provisions to make Election Day a public vacation, have similar day voter registration in any respect polling locations by 2024 and guarantee not less than 15 days of early voting for federal elections.
  • Manchin has been an lively defender of the filibuster. But Democrats cannot pass the invoice with a easy majority until they droop the rule.

Read the letter.

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