Such a law would counter Republican efforts across the country to suppress voting and politicise the counting and reporting of voting results….
A key Senate committee is expected to vote as soon as Tuesday to advance Democrats’ sweeping elections overhaul, stamping its approval on a landmark voting rights expansion as Washington tries to blunt ballot restrictions by Republican-controlled statehouses.
The debate and anticipated vote in the Senate Rules Committee are a significant milestone for liberals who have made the bill, H.R. 1, their top legislative priority. If enacted, it would effectively override laws emerging in states like Georgia and Florida that raise barriers to vote with national requirements — like automatic voter registration, no-excuse early and mail-in voting and the re-enfranchisement of former felons — meant to lower them.
But any victory this week may be fleeting. With Republicans digging in to oppose the 800-page bill and even some Democrats expressing reservations about its approach, the path to passage on an evenly divided Senate floor is anything but clear. (The bill already passed the House.)
In the short term, Democratic leaders plan to crank up pressure on Republicans to bring them to the negotiating table. They intend to offer a series of amendments during a committee debate meant to stoke political outrage over Republicans’ attempts to curtail voting, including one by Senator Jon Ossoff of Georgia that would overturn his state’s ban on offering snacks or water to voters stuck in long lines….
Privately, Democrats concede that bipartisan support is unrealistic….
Proponents of the bill fear that if Congress does not act quickly, there will not be time to implement the changes before 2022.
At least some senators appear ready to make wholesale changes if necessary to win the support of Mr. Manchin and other hesitant Democrats. One of them, Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia, said the stakes were “existential” if Democrats failed.