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McConnell Responds to Manchin's Voting Law Pitch

Senate minority leader says 'plan endorsed by Stacey Abrams is no compromise'
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 18, 2021 7:32 AM CDT

(Newser) – On Thursday, Sen. Joe Manchin offered up a long list of reforms to proposed voting rights legislation that he hoped would appeal to both Democrats and Republicans. But by later that day, the GOP made clear the compromise effort wasn't drawing them in. Per Axios, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell noted the Manchin-revised plan still had a "rotten core" that served as an "assault on the fundamental idea that states, not the federal government, should decide how to run their own elections." He added that the For the People Act "takes redistricting away from state legislatures and hands it over to computers," and that he's reviewed GOP-passed state laws recently put in place and found "none of them are designed to suppress the vote," per the Washington Post. One person's endorsement of Manchin's pitch may have set McConnell on the "no deal" path.

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"In reality, the plan endorsed by Stacey Abrams is no compromise," McConnell said in reaction to the news that the voting rights activist said she could get behind Manchin's proposal, per Axios. GOP Sen. Roy Blount of Missouri similarly balked at Abrams' endorsement, saying it has turned the plan into "the Stacey Abrams substitute, not the Joe Manchin substitute," per the Post. Abrams doesn't think her thumbs-up is the real issue. "If I disagreed with it, they were going to oppose it," she said Thursday. "If I agreed with it, they were going to oppose it." The Post notes that McConnell's remarks signal near-certain doom for the legislation set to go to a House vote on Tuesday, and that they lead to a new question: whether all the Dems will unite on Tuesday and "how they will react once Republicans block the legislation." Manchin's plans remain unclear. "We'll see what bill we have," he said Thursday, per the AP. (Read more Mitch McConnell stories.)

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