By: Teddy Grant
Every single Republican senator used the filibuster on Tuesday to block debate on a reform bill that would have tackled voting, campaign finance, government ethics and redistricting.
The For the People Act, which President Joe Biden pushed, would have been the most significant voting rights legislation in a generation and reversed many state-led voting restrictions passed in recent months by mostly GOP-led states.
“There is a rot — a rot at the center of the modern Republican Party,” said Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. “There is no principle behind these laws: not fraud, not election integrity, not security, not better election administration. The only principle is blatant partisan electoral advantage.”
All 50 Senate Democrats voted to advance the measure, while all 50 Senate Republicans voted to block the bill.
The legislation was expected to fail because it needed 60 votes to pass and the GOP made it clear that it wasn’t considering it.
According to the New York Times, the bill would have banned gerrymandering of congressional districts, forced super PACS to reveal their big-money donors, increased election security and would have made it easier for people of color to vote in elections.
On Monday, former President Barack Obama said that voting rights legislation needed to be passed before the 2022 midterm elections or American democracy would be at risk.
“We can’t wait until the next election because if we have the same kinds of shenanigans that brought about Jan. 6, if we have that for a couple more election cycles, we’re going to have real problems in terms of our democracy long-term,” Obama said on a town hall call with grassroots supporters.