Marriage Equality Bill Could Break Senate Filibuster, Lawmakers Say

Lawmakers in support of a bill to codify marriage equality throughout the U.S., cementing rights recognized in a 2015 Supreme Court case, are optimistic that the legislation can attain the 60-vote threshold needed to avert a filibuster. Several Republican senators have indicated support for the Respect for Marriage Act, a bill that would repeal the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), a law that is still technically on the books that, if reinstated, would allow conservative states to discriminate against LGBTQ couples in their jurisdictions. The bill comes in response to rising Christofascism from the Supreme Court, which has suggested…

Sinema Kills Plan to Codify Abortion Rights While Fundraising on Protecting Them

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., on Thursday sent out a fundraising email touting her work to protect women’s health care after shooting down President Joe Biden’s proposal to codify abortion rights. Biden on Thursday called for the Senate to support a filibuster carveout to pass a federal law ensuring the right to an abortion. “The most important thing … we have to change — I believe we have to codify Roe v. Wade in the law,” Biden said during a news conference at the NATO summit in Madrid. “And the way to do that is to make sure the Congress votes…

Warren Says US Is Just Two Anti-Filibuster Democrats Away From Codifying “Roe”

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) is calling on voters to elect just two more lawmakers to join Senate Democrats this fall, in order to secure enough votes for filibuster reform or abolition with the goal of enshrining federal abortion protections into law. In an interview with ABC on Sunday, Warren said that while there are number of actions that lawmakers can take right now to expand and protect abortion access, one of the widest-reaching actions that voters can take is to elect lawmakers to overcome conservative Senators Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia) and Kyrsten Sinema’s (D-Arizona) opposition to filibuster reform in the…

Manchin Backs Gun Legislation but Won’t Budge on Ending Filibuster

The day after a horrific school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, in which 19 children and two adults were killed on Tuesday morning, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia) told reporters that he supports passing legislation to reform gun laws in the U.S. — unless doing so will require getting rid of the filibuster. Manchin has consistently defended the filibuster over the past year and a half, even as it was repeatedly used by Republicans to sabotage the Democratic party’s entire legislative agenda, including the Build Back Better Act. Shortly after the Uvalde shooting, Manchin expressed dismay that Republicans in the Senate…

Progressives Rail Against Sinema For Choosing Filibuster Over Voting Rights

On what would have been Martin Luther King Jr.’s 93rd birthday, voting rights advocates and progressive lawmakers rallied in Arizona on Saturday to target the first-term Democratic senator blocking legislation aimed at strengthening ballot access amid growing GOP-led suppression efforts. In attendance at Saturday’s demonstrations in Phoenix were members of the King family, which is planning to lead a march to Washington, D.C. on MLK Day with a simple message to lawmakers: “No celebration without legislation.” Referring to Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s (D-Ariz.) Thursday speech defending the 60-vote legislative filibuster, Martin Luther King III argued Saturday that “what she said is,…

Sanders Says Manchin and Sinema Are Undermining US Democracy

Sen. Bernie Sanders said Friday that by vowing to uphold the archaic Senate rule standing in the way of voting rights legislation, his Senate colleagues Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema are putting “the future of American democracy” at risk. “It is a sad day when two members of the Democratic caucus are prepared to allow the Freedom to Vote Act to fail,” the Vermont senator tweeted. “I hope very much they will reconsider their positions.” Sinema (D-Ariz.) and Manchin’s (D-W.Va.) opposition to weakening the 60-vote filibuster rule — a stance they reiterated Thursday — effectively tanks their party’s hopes of…

Critics Lambaste Sinema’s Opposition to Filibuster Changes

During a Thursday speech on the Senate floor, conservative Democrat Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (Arizona) announced that she would not support changing the filibuster rule, potentially dooming any chance of voting rights legislation being passed in the foreseeable future. On Thursday, Sinema claimed that the filibuster debate was “harried,” adding that she believed that there “could have and should have been a thoughtful public debate at any time over the past year.” Her comments ignore several months of discussion (and weeks of negotiations) on the subject, both inside and outside of the Senate. Sinema also claimed that she isn’t opposed to…

Voting Rights Groups Tell Biden: Don’t Come to Atlanta Without a Plan

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris are planning to visit Atlanta, Georgia, next week – but a coalition of voting rights organizations are telling them to stay in Washington, D.C., unless they can visit with a plan for strengthening voting protections across the U.S. In a statement from the White House earlier this week, Biden and Harris announced that they would be visiting Atlanta on Tuesday, January 11, with the aim of promoting voting rights legislation in Congress. Several Republican-led states across the country, including Georgia, have passed highly restrictive voting laws following former President Donald Trump’s loss…

Sen. Raphael Warnock Urges End to Filibuster, Passage of Voting Rights Bills

Democratic Senator Raphael Warnock of Georgia implored conservative members of his party to stop obstructing voting rights legislation in a powerful speech on the floor of the Senate Tuesday. While Warnock did not name Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, the two have come out against doing away with the filibuster in order to allow Democrats to pass the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. Warnock said there was no chance of Republicans joining the effort to safeguard democracy and that only a change to the filibuster could secure passage of the bills. “Who…

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