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GOP ready to block voting rights bill in Senate showdown

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Posted at 4:32 AM, Jun 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-22 07:09:04-04

The Democrats’ expansive elections and voting bill is all but certain to be rejected in a key Senate test vote.

The action Tuesday is expected to provide a dramatic example of Republicans’ use of the filibuster to block legislation.

It's also forcing hard questions for Democrats over next steps.

Backers of the For the People bill see it as the civil rights issue of the era, and they say it's needed to protect voting rights as states impose restrictive new laws.

In the evenly split Senate, Republicans are united in opposition — meaning it will be difficult for Democrats to find bipartisan support for the bill, which will need 60 votes to overcome the filibuster and begin debate.

Sen. Joe Manchin, the West Virginia delegate who is perhaps the most moderate of the Democratic caucus, remained a holdout on Monday evening. Last week, he proposed changes to the bill — provisions that included a national voter ID requirement and dropping proposed public financing of campaigns.

While those changes were lauded by the White House as a "step forward," it did little to bring Republicans on board.