USA Today/Gannett: House Democrats approve voting-rights bill named after John Lewis as GOP calls it ‘partisan power grab’
USA Today/Gannett: House Democrats approve voting-rights bill named after John Lewis as GOP calls it 'partisan power grab'
WASHINGTON – House Democrats voted Tuesday to revive federal oversight of state voting-rights laws that had been weakened by recent Supreme Court decisions, but the measure faces an uncertain future against Republican opposition in the Senate.
The House voted 219-212 along straight party lines to approve the legislation named for the late Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., a civil-rights icon. The bill aims to restore Justice Department review of changes in election law in states with a history of discrimination. …
As the debate moves to the Senate, the legislation could lead to showdown over the filibuster. A filibuster blocking legislation requires 60 votes to overcome, in the Senate with 50 Republicans and 50 lawmakers who vote with Democrats.
Civil rights groups have urged Senate Democrats to abolish the filibuster in order to pass voting-rights legislation. But it’s not clear yet whether they would take that step.
“If 10 Senate Republicans won’t support this bill, then Senate Democrats must reform the filibuster,” said Sylvia Albert, Common Cause director of voting and elections. “The freedom to vote must be protected for every American.”