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Biden’s silence on filibuster strains Democrats’ patience

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President BidenBiden's silence on filibuster strains Democrats' patienceJoe BidenPence Refused to Leave Capitol During Riots: Book Police officers accused father and son of participating in Proud Boys in Capitol riots On The Money: Five Questions For Democrats About Their .5T Budget | Retail sales recover in June despite rising prices MORE gave an impassioned speech this week about democracy and the protection of voting rights, but Democratic strategists and activists say something he hasn’t mentioned — namely filibuster reform — could cost him something.

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“This is really the first place Biden is at risk of losing ground,” said a top Democratic strategist.
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“It is no coincidence that it is about voting rights. I think black voters feel like ‘we did the hard work and elected you’ and want to make sure the president keeps his promises,” the strategist added.

On Tuesday in Philadelphia, Biden said unequivocally: that preserving the “right to vote” of Americans is paramount to his administration. He urged members of Congress to pass the For the People Act to do just that, a call that comes as GOP-led states across the country promote electoral reforms that critics say amount to overt voter suppression .

Democrats agree that his rhetoric and delivery were powerful. He used phrases like “absolutely extraordinary” to describe the hurdles some voters faced last year from simply casting their vote. They viewed it as a leadership step toward undoing a dangerous threat.

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But some say it lacked the natural follow- up necessary to actually pass the law for lawmakers.

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Without moving Democratic Sens. Joe ManchinBiden's silence on filibuster strains Democrats' patienceJoe ManchinFederal judge blocks new applications for DACA Five questions for Democrats about their .5T budget Kings launch voting rights in honor of John Lewis MORE (W.Va.) and Kyrsten SinemaBiden's silence on filibuster strains Democrats' patienceKyrsten SinemaKings launch voting rights in honor of John Lewis Voting restrictions make it harder for tribal communities to vote Senate Negotiators Struggling to Refute GOP Criticism MORE (Ariz.) to give up their defense of the Senate legislative filibuster, the legislation will not move forward.

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“The silence was deafening about the filibuster question that would make it a reality,” said Joseph Geevarghese, who leads the left-wing group Our Revolution.

“We won’t have voting rights legislation unless we have filibuster reform,” said Just Democracy’s Stasha Rhodes. “You can’t talk about the problem without talking about the solutions. We know the White House sees this as a problem. Our goal is for them to share the same urgency. But we need to hear how.”

“If not now is the time, when?” Rhodes added. “Voting rights are connected to everything we care about.”

Geevarghese, Rhodes and other activists stressed that their work to get Biden and the two Senate moderates to commit to a forward-looking blueprint does not stop after one speech.

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The White House has effectively pushed the question of how to deal with the filibuster to the upstairs room. press secretary Jen PsakiBiden's silence on filibuster strains Democrats' patienceJen PsakiCDC completes order allowing unaccompanied children to enter US in exception to pandemic rule Overnight Defense: Milley reportedly warned Trump about attacks in Iran | Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer murdered in Afghanistan | 70 percent of active-duty military personnel are at least partially vaccinated Overnight Health Care: CDC director warns of ‘pandemic of unvaccinated’ | Biden Says Social Media Platforms Are ‘Killing People’ | Florida accounts for 20 percent of new cases MORE mentioned it recently a “legislative process tool” that is “important” and “justifies debate”. But she stopped taking a stance on future changes, saying that “the decision about making changes will be made by members of the Senate, not this president or any president.”

Other legislation on immigration reform and gun security background checks has already been passed by the House, as well as a special committee to investigate the Jan. 6 Capitol uprising. However, they too have not been able to survive the existing filibuster.

Some Democrats say the For the People Act should be especially important to Biden given the way he emerged in the 2020 presidential primaries. After finishing low in early and mostly white primary states, black voters in South Carolina showed massive support for him. He easily won subsequent matches with more diverse constituencies.

That South Carolina win came after a major endorsement from House Majority Whip James Clyburn (DS.C.), who last week Called on Biden to Support Filibuster Reform specifically in the name of voting rights.

“It is important that the president is rhetorical about this. It sends a signal to the grassroots to keep fighting on this issue,” Geevarghese said.

Voters in Arizona, Georgia and Texas — states with significant minority populations — are now among those facing new ballot box restrictions.

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The Democratic National Committee reinforced Biden’s condemnation of such measures in an email explosion after his speech, and zoomed in on elected Texas Democrats protesting GOP election reform by fleeing the state.

While Democrats’ concerns about protecting democracy are loud and widely shared, they also come as other key legislative actions they support, through Congress. The talk about voting rights takes place quite literally as Biden aims to realize a massive infrastructure plan, including a multi-trillion dollar package specifically designed to circumvent the filibuster.

“Making sausage is never easy or fun to watch,” said Kelly Dietrich, who founded the National Democratic Training Committee.

“We as progressives see an incredibly adept Biden moving an agenda through an incredibly tight Congress. By gaining victories, you can help give space to those Senators who may not feel comfortable coming straight out of the gate on these issues,” Dietrich added.

“Specifically, we are talking about Manchin. We’re talking about Sinema,’ he said.

According to Dietrich, “gains” on both spending bills would theoretically make it easier for the centrist duo to brag to voters in West Virginia and Arizona about how much Biden was able to achieve during his administration. They could then potentially justify an otherwise delicate vote on the For the People Act, he said.

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Progressives on Capitol Hill, including top leaders in both chambers, spent much of the week promoting the Senate’s work to reach a $3.5 trillion budget deal, while also pushing forward a $1 billion bipartisan infrastructure plan. .2 trillion supported.

Both measures would advance a number of items on progressives’ wish lists by providing more money to areas such as climate, education and various social safety net initiatives. Liberal office holders are now trying to make sure those items are properly funded in the final version.

“Most groups are crazy right now with how Biden provides infrastructure and care,” said Eddie Vale, a Democratic aide.

While the lack of specifics in Biden’s speech affected some early in the week, many on the left seemed willing to give the president credit for managing the big spending bills toward the end. The both-and approach shows what some Democrats believe is a natural tension between demanding action in one area and complimenting another.

It is certainly not unique to the Biden era. But the style has become more outspoken as progressives become more organized and vocal with their requests.

“It always happens with any government that groups still disagree with you on some issues and won’t hold back,” Vale said. “Even if they’re happy with nine out of ten other things that happen.”

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The post Biden’s silence on filibuster strains Democrats’ patience appeared first on Notesradar.

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