Clyburn predicts Democrats ‘will bypass’ obstruction of voting rights

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House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn (DS.C.) told “Axios on HBO” that he expects Senate Democrats to find a way around the filibuster to pass a federal voting rights legislation.

Why is this important: Protecting and expanding voting rights was a major issue Joe Biden campaigned on, but Democrats were unable to put protections in place nearly a year after starting his presidency. Clyburn predicted Congress would combine multiple bills into one – although he couldn’t say when.

  • “It may require a bit of jiu-jitsu, but it’s not for the Senate to do it,” he said.
  • “They’ll find a way around it,” Clyburn added. “We had better find a way around it, because this democracy is on the verge of collapse.”

Between the lines: The House passed voting rights and electoral reform bills, but they were amended and stuck in the Senate for months.

  • Both the Freedom to Vote Act and the Advancement of Voting Rights Act of John R. Lewis are stuck in the Senate, and Republicans killed the Democrats for the People’s Law in the Senate last summer.
  • “We will find a way to get these voting rights bills passed,” said Clyburn, the third House Democrat.

The backdrop: A small group of Senate Democrats, including Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia, gathered to discuss rule changes that could help push the franchise through without Republican backing – but without ending the filibuster .

  • Last week, the White House released a backgrounder detailing how it is attempting to “restore and strengthen democracy”.
  • In March, President Biden also signed an executive order to promote better access to the vote.

Clyburn not cheering on his Senate colleagues to remove the filibuster, saying instead that the budget reconciliation process “should apply to constitutional matters like voting” – even though he’s not a fan of the partisan political baton.

  • “I happened to be there in 1964 and 1965, when we had to overcome obstacles to pass the Voting Rights Act and the Civil Rights Act of 64,” he told ” Axios on HBO “.
  • “When you institutionalize filibuster, you institutionalize racism.”

Go further: In a high-profile conversation during the show’s season finale, Clyburn also said he believes Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) Should be stripped of her committee duties – but the GOP itself must hold it responsible.

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