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Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA) issued the statement below following Senate Republicans’ efforts to block multiple attempts by the Senate to take up debate on vital voting rights legislation. A vocal voting rights advocate, since late July Senator Warnock has worked closely with some of his Senate Democratic colleagues—including Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), and others—to craft federal voting rights legislation that can garner broad support.
“Last night, after the Senate took the first steps to approve an expansive economic package that will revitalize and fortify the infrastructure of our communities, Senate Democrats tried once again to begin work on legislation that will help repair the infrastructure of our democracy. And once again, Senate Republicans shamefully blocked efforts to open debate on this critical issue as sweeping voter suppression laws take root in Georgia and in states across the nation.
“That’s why over the past three weeks I’ve been sharply focused on bringing my colleagues together to craft a bill that will protect access to the ballot for every eligible American, and garner the support of every Senate Democrat, at least—and that’s why I have been pushing hard for us to complete that important step as quickly as possible. I’m proud of the progress we’ve made together, and I believe we are close to resolving all of our outstanding issues to produce a strong piece of voting rights legislation.
“Voting rights are preservative of all other rights, and my Senate Democratic colleagues and I are fiercely committed to acting with urgency to protect the sacred right to vote; in fact, Majority Leader Schumer has made clear that voting rights will be the very first matter of legislative business when the Senate returns to session. To that end, I look forward to finishing work on crafting our legislation imminently, and then beginning the necessary work to introduce and advance that legislation as soon as the Senate returns in September. We are in a 911 emergency for our democracy, and we must pass federal voting rights legislation, no matter what—meeting this historic moment requires nothing less.”