Democrat Senators Turn to Election Reform After Biden’s Budget Bill Fails

Democrats have changed their minds about passing President Joe Biden’s “Build Back Better” legislation before Christmas.

On Wednesday, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Democrats are reorienting on the highly contested Freedom to Vote and John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Acts.

Schumer didn’t say if the $1.85 trillion spending plan would be voted on before Christmas or not. These bills were made in response to red state voter integrity legislation enacted after the 2020 election, which Democrats say is unfair and strict.

‘Their Democracy’

Schumer stated on Wednesday their caucus is unanimous in the belief they must adopt legislation to defend their democratic system of government. Democrats also believe the Republican legislatures undermine and kill their democracy by doing things only for the Republican Party.

The new focus shows the chances of passing Biden’s bill by Christmas are getting slimmer.

No Republicans support the plan. Furthermore, West Virginia centrist Democrat Joe Manchin hasn’t changed his mind on opposing the social welfare and green power budget proposal in the last few weeks.

Manchin doesn’t like a methane fee that would make natural gas more expensive. He also says paid leave should be worked out in a second bill with Republicans to make sure it stays in place.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, a socialist and independent from Vermont, is in charge of the Senate’s spending plan committee; he wants to get their “Build Back Better” bill passed as soon as feasible. 

Democrats gathered in private on Tuesday and Wednesday to attempt to develop a way to pass voting reform legislation with only leftist votes. They came up with the idea of a “carve-out” for the filibuster. If Manchin agrees, it would be like the “Build Back Better Act.”

Revocation of the Filibuster

There is a great deal of pressure on Manchin to concur to a one-time revocation of the filibuster; however, Manchin and other Senate moderates are still not willing to do this.

Manchin told the media this week they should be able to work within the rules because they would all have to live with them. That’s because Democrats are going to be in the minority at some point, then the majority, and so on and so forth.

Democrat legislators have tried to pass their voting reform bills in a number of different ways this year. Still, Republicans obstructed them because they say the proposals harm voter integrity, would give the federal government more control over local elections, and are written to help Democrats win.

Manchin brokered a bill to make it easier for people to vote. A lot of restrictions on voter I.D. were eased; furthermore, the national government would’ve had to approve redistricting in some states and cities to stop racial discrimination.

The bill received the backing of one Republican, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.