Joe Manchin to face critics in meeting with Black civil rights leaders on voting – live
June 8, 2021world
In more voting rights news: following the Sunday oped in which Democratic senator Joe Manchin committed against voting for the For The People Act, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is saying the House will move on the John Lewis Voting Rights Act.
Some recap: the For The People Act would ensure automatic and same-day registration, place limits on gerrymandering and restore voting rights for felons. The John Lewis Act, named after the late Georgia Democratic congressman, would reauthorize voting protections established in the civil rights era but eliminated by the supreme court in 2013.
Manchin said he would support the John Lewis Act. His major concern with the For The People Act is that it was not bipartisan.
Pelosi made clear that the John Lewis Act is not a substitute for the For The People Act.
Former President Barack Obama went on CNN last night to criticize how Republicans have been “cowed into accepting” a series of positions that “would be unrecognizable and unacceptable even five years ago or a decade ago”.
In an interview with Anderson Cooper, Obama spoke of the 6 January attack on the US Capitol: “Suddenly you have large portions of the elected Congress going along with the falsehood that there were problems with the election.”
He expressed disappointment in Republican elected officials, saying that he understood that while it was politically difficult to go against the lies and conspiracy theories being peddled among their base, it was the right thing to do.
“I didn’t expect that there would be so few people who would say, ‘I don’t mind losing my office because this is too important. America is too important. Our democracy is too important’,” Obama said. “We didn’t see that.”
“I’m still the hope and change guy,” Obama said. “My hope is the tides will turn, but that does require each of us to understand that this experiment in democracy is not self-executing. It doesn’t happen just automatically. It happens because each successive generation says ‘these values, these truths, we hold self-evident. This is important. We’re going to invest in it and sacrifice for it, even when it’s not politically convenient’.”
Vice-President Kamala Harris travels to Mexico today to meet with the country’s president, Alejandro Giammattei. But Harris is already drawing some criticism on her first official foreign trip.
In Guatemala yesterday, Harris was blunt in telling would-be migrants “do not come” to the US border.
Her spokeswoman, Symone Sanders, appeared to try to soften that statement today:
The Guardian’s Julian Borger looks into some other questions raised by the measures Harris announced in Guatemala:
Hello, live blog readers. Hope you’re all doing well.
Two days after publishing an op ed on why he won’t vote for voting rights legislation for which he was a key vote, Democratic West Virginia senator Joe Manchin will meet with critics on the left today.
Black and civil rights leaders have long fought against what many Democrats have categorized as Republican efforts to restrict voter access in communities of color.
And they’re not happy.
Manchin’s decision leave Democrats scrambling on what to do next on the For the People Act, which would ensure automatic and same-day registration, place limits on gerrymandering and restore voting rights for felons.
It comes as Joe Biden said he would “fight like heck” for voting protections, putting Vice-President Kamala Harris in charge of the White House’s efforts.
Our voting rights reporter Sam Levine takes a deeper look at the impact of Manchin’s decision here: