On Tuesday (June 22) a federal voting rights bill was blocked after Senate Republicans filibustered debate, leaving Democrats unable to advance the elections legislation.
The vote to push forward an amended version of the For The People Act was split 50-50 along party lines, falling short of the 60 votes required to advance a bill forward. Every Democratic senator voted to start debate on the bill to push it forward in the chamber while all Republicans voted to block the bill.
“They don’t even want to debate it because they’re afraid,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said during the proceedings. “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,” he added.
“There is a rot –– a rot –– at the center of the modern Republican party. Donald Trump’s big lie has spread like cancer and threatens to envelop one of America’s major political parties.”
Following the 2020 Election, Democrats have pushed for federal level voting rights protections as hundreds of Republican-sponsored bills have been introduced to restrict access to the ballot. There’s also renewed interest in getting rid of the filibuster to prevent Tuesday’s defeat from happening again.
Schumer called the vote “the starting gun, not the finish line” and said Democrats “will not let it die.”
“We have several, serious options for how to reconsider this issue and advance legislation to combat voter suppression. We are going to explore every last one of our options,” Schumer declared after the failed vote. “We have to. Voting rights are too important.”
After the vote failed, several Democrats and voting rights advocates posted their reactions to the Republicans’ block.