In a controversial Capitol Hill hearing on Wednesday, US Senator Roy Blunt, R-Mo, slammed Democrats for what he described as a “false narrative” regarding the voter suppression allegations.
The Senate Rules Committee was debating the For the People Act, a federal voting rights proposal sponsored by the committee chair, U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn.
“The bill was just trying to make it easier to vote,” Klobuchar said, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “The law for the people is the best chance to stop the rollback of voting rights.”
But during his questioning of witness Michael Waldman of the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University, Blunt alleged that the proposal supported by Klobuchar was an attempt to federalize the election under the guise of trying to protect voters’ rights.
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Blunt asserted that lawmakers have frequently introduced similar legislation over the years, only to see plan after plan fail to become law.
“It’s a great excuse to overthrow a system that has served the country well for a long time,” Blunt said, referring to local election control.
The senator then asked Waldman why his group had suggested that a state effort to remove the names of the deceased from voters’ lists would be an example of voter removal.
“Because there are often errors in the lists that are used in Social Security and the like…” Waldman began, before Blunt intervened.
“So, in your opinion, the federal government is not able to tell the state which social security recipients have died and no longer receive checks, so we should put the whole election in a federal structure. just don’t agree … “
Klobuchar then interrupted: “Senator Blunt, can we allow the witness to answer the question, please?”
“No,” Blunt replied.
“No no?” Klobuchar responded.
Blunt then went on to explain why he believed Waldman answered his survey correctly.
“The witness answered the question,” Blunt said. “Senator, the witness answered the question by saying that the federal government is often wrong in giving information to the states. That was the answer to the question.”
At the same hearing, US Senator Ted Cruz, R-Texas, claimed Democrats plan to use automatic same-day voter registration programs so that “millions of illegal aliens” and “criminals Could get the right to vote, the Star Tribune reported.
Senate leaders Chuck Schumer, DN.Y., and Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., Briefly clashed with the Democrats’ plan.
“I would like to ask my fellow Republicans, why are you so afraid of democracy? Schumer asked, according to CNBC.” Why, instead of trying to convince voters that you lost in the last election, are you trying to prevent them from voting?
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“Shame, shame, shame,” Schumer added.
“Talk about shame,” McConnell replied. “If anyone has to feel any shame here, it’s transforming the FEC[Federal Elections Commission] as a partisan prosecutor. The majority controlled by the president’s party to harass and intimidate the other side – that’s what you should be ashamed of. “
The Democratic-controlled House had already passed its voter rights legislation earlier this month, without the support of Republicans.
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