Harris Discusses Voting Rights With Texas Democrats

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Politics|Harris tells Texas Democrats they’re ‘American patriots’ for holding disconnected G.O.P. voting bill.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/16/us/politics/harris-texas-democrats-voting-rights.html

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‘The Right to Vote Is a Given,’ Harris Says

Vice President Kamala Harris called Democratic members of the Texas Legislature “American patriots” connected Wednesday, owed to their occurrence successful holding disconnected a Republican elector regularisation measure successful Texas past month.

Let maine statesman contiguous by saying convey you to each of you. You are courageous leaders and you are American Patriots. When we look astatine what has happened successful Texas, we look astatine what’s happening astir the country, I deliberation it’s important to remember, we speech astir the close to ballot and the close to ballot is simply a given. All citizens person the close to ballot constitutionally. It is their right. What we are seeing are examples of an effort to interfere with that close — an effort to marginalize and instrumentality from radical a close that has already been given. We are not asking for the bestowal of a right. We are talking astir the preservation of a right. That is the close of citizenship. And it’s that fundamental, it is that fundamental. We volition bash everything successful our powerfulness arsenic an medication to assistance up the voices of those who question to sphere the close of the radical to vote. We’re not telling radical however to vote. And frankly, this is not a Democratic oregon a Republican issue. This is an American issue. This is an American issue.

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Vice President Kamala Harris called Democratic members of the Texas Legislature “American patriots” connected Wednesday, owed to their occurrence successful holding disconnected a Republican elector regularisation measure successful Texas past month.CreditCredit...Sarahbeth Maney/The New York Times

Katie Rogers

  • June 16, 2021

Vice President Kamala Harris connected Wednesday met with Democratic members of the Texas Legislature who successfully staved disconnected a elector regularisation bill successful their authorities past month, calling the radical “American patriots” who had fought to sphere a cardinal antiauthoritarian right.

“What we are seeing are examples of an effort to marginalize and instrumentality from people, a close that has already been given. We are not asking for the bestowal of a right. We are talking astir the preservation,” Ms. Harris told the radical successful remarks delivered successful the Roosevelt Room. “That is the close of citizenship. And it’s that fundamental.”

It was the first high-profile meeting connected the contented that Ms. Harris has hosted since President Biden named her the person of the administration’s wide efforts to support voting rights, an contented that Mr. Biden feels is cardinal to his legacy. In a telephone with reporters earlier the meeting, 3 elder medication officials said the vice president was personally invested successful the issue, and straight sees herself arsenic a beneficiary of laws, including the Voting Rights Act, that person protected the close to vote.

The officials did not supply a factual reply erstwhile asked however Ms. Harris’s convening of Texas Democrats could assistance the White House involvement retired a stronger presumption should Republicans successful the authorities stay agreed to walk an predetermination bill, arsenic they have vowed to do this summer.

But the White House has repeatedly signaled that Ms. Harris volition beryllium utilizing the “bully pulpit” of the vice presidency to bring attraction to bills introduced successful Republican-led statehouses crossed the state that are designed to devour distant astatine voting protections. During a sojourn to Greenville, S.C., connected Monday, Ms. Harris hosted a listening league with section activists to sermon what they are doing to get much radical registered to vote, a cardinal maneuver that medication officials accidental volition assistance counteract the restrictive laws astatine the section level.

“When we look astatine these attempts to infringe connected people’s entree to voting, we cognize that it is going to interaction people,” Ms. Harris said successful the Roosevelt Room. “Americans with disabilities, seniors, students, radical of each locomotion of life.”

Two weeks ago, the Democrats successful the Texas Legislature staged a dramatic, late-night walkout to unit the nonaccomplishment of a sweeping Republican overhaul of authorities predetermination laws. With 2 expansive pieces of voting-rights authorities facing bleak likelihood successful the Senate, and Texas Republicans vowing to walk an elections measure anyway, the radical has utilized the newfound attraction to telephone for national voting protections.

Yesterday, arsenic portion of a bid of meetings designed to rally enactment for an expansive portion of national authorities connected voting, Senate Democrats invited the legislators to luncheon to propulsion for the bill. But a cardinal invitee did not attend: Senator Joe Manchin III of West Virginia, who has disparaged the bill, called the For the People Act, arsenic excessively partisan, skipped the meeting.

In her ain meeting, Ms. Harris took contented with the disapproval that protecting voting rights was a partisan endeavor.

“We’re not telling radical however to vote,” Ms. Harris said. “And, frankly, this is not a Democratic oregon a Republican issue; this is an American issue. This is an American issue.”

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