Voting rights and the fight in Congress

Listen 49:00
President Joe Biden pauses while speaking to members of the media as he leaves a meeting with the Senate Democratic Caucus to discuss voting rights and election integrity on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

President Joe Biden pauses while speaking to members of the media as he leaves a meeting with the Senate Democratic Caucus to discuss voting rights and election integrity on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Congressional Democrats’ and President Biden’s push to pass voting rights legislation may have ended on Thursday with Senator Kyrsten Sinema’s Senate speech announcing her continued support for the filibuster. This came just hours before President Biden was set to meet with Congressional Democrats to urge them to pass the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, even if it required reforming or ending the filibuster. We’ll talk about where voting legislation stands and what this means for the future of our elections. And, ahead of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, we’ll discuss Black Americans’ long fight for the right to vote.

Guests

Franita Tolson, Law professor and Vice Dean at USC Gould School of Law. @proftolson

Claudia Grisales, NPR Congressional Reporter. @cgrisales

Nick Corasaniti, National politics reporter for The New York Times. @NYTnickc

Recommended Reading

NPR: Biden says he doesn’t know if voting rights legislation can pass  – “I don’t know whether we can get this done,” Biden told reporters after the meeting. “But one thing for certain, like every other major civil rights bill that came along, if we miss the first time, we can come back and try a second time.”

New York Times: Sinema Says She Will Not Support Changing Filibuster – “Ms. Sinema has been under pressure from her colleagues to drop her opposition to a rules change, but her refusal to reverse course appeared to doom the bills in the Senate.”

The New York Times: A Voting Rights Push, as States Make Voting Harder – “Calm persuasion, Mr. Biden said, is no longer an option for a voting law that Democrats have now been debating among themselves for nearly a year.”

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal