MLK Day Draws Attention to Voting Bills, Filibuster Reform

Headline Roundup January 17th, 2022

Martin Luther King Jr. Day drew media attention to the debate around voting access and the filibuster.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Monday that Democrats plan to open debate on voting rights and filibuster reform. Last week, Democratic Sens. Kyrsten Sinema and Joe Manchin reiterated their opposition to changing the filibuster, a Senate rule that functionally allows the minority party to require 60 votes, instead of 51 votes, to pass most legislation. Democrats want to alter the filibuster to pass election reforms that would counter several recent Republican-backed state election laws, which they say “restrict” voting rights.

Voices from the left generally supported Democrats’ efforts to reform the filibuster, and voices from the right criticized those efforts. Some outlets featured coverage claiming Arizonans agreed or disagreed with Sinema, who represents their state. AZ Central (Center) published multiple opinion articles criticizing Sinema's position on the filibuster.

From the Center
308
OPINION

President Biden and Senate Democrats have a special gift in mind for what would have been the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 93rd birthday: declaring hyperpartisanship an insurmountable reality and capitulating accordingly.

Specifically, in order to advance voting rights legislation, Democrats are on the brink of eliminating the Senate filibuster, a 60-vote threshold for moving legislation forward, to make it possible to pass bills with a simple majority of 51 votes. It strikes me as both ironic and cynical that this craven surrender to partisanship is attached to King, a...

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From the Right
308
OPINION

Sens. Joe Manchin, Kyrsten Sinema, and their party fellows in the Senate are facing a dilemma. Should they blow up the legislative filibuster to pass their inaptly named Voting Rights Bill, or preserve it to defend against Republicans doing the same when they have a majority?

We have seen this play out before. In 2013, the Senate majority leader, the recently deceased Harry Reid, went nuclear to remove the 67-vote threshold for all presidential nominees except Supreme Court justices. Four years later, and right on cue Sen. Mitch McConnell, in the same...

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From the Left
308
OPINION

When our daughter, Yolanda Renee King, was born in 2008, her voting rights were more secure than they are today, on the holiday to commemorate her grandfather Martin Luther King Jr.'s 93rd birthday.

Over the past 13 years since our greatest joy came into the world, the Supreme Court has twice-over gutted the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a historic bill Yolanda's grandfather and countless other non-violent resistance leaders bled to secure. In the year between Yolanda's 12th and 13th birthdays, state legislatures passed 34 suppressive laws in 19 states that make it harder...

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