Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) tore into President Biden's voting rights speech Wednesday, calling it a "rant" that was "incoherent, incorrect," and "unpresidential."
In a speech delivered in Georgia Tuesday, Biden urged Congress to pass two federal voting rights bills that would supercede a wave of red-state election laws he referred to as "Jim Crow 2.0." He also called for Senate rules to be changed to eliminate the filibuster and allow voting rights legislation to pass with 50 votes rather than the 60 currently required. A handful of McConnell's responses stood out amid his fiery reply.
1. Biden has betrayed his promise to act as a unifier
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"[President Biden received] a mandate to do just one central thing that he campaigned on. Here's what that was: Bridge a divided country … But yesterday, he poured a giant can of gasoline on the fire." McConnell previously criticized Biden's lack of "unity" messaging, but then seemingly backed off — until now.
2. Biden's claims about voting laws were misleading
"Georgia has more days of early voting than Delaware or New York. Georgia has no-excuse absentee voting which Delaware and New York do not have. If Georgia or Texas present Jim Crow emergencies, then so do a whole lot of Democratic-run states." This could become the party line as Democrats continue to prioritize voting rights laws.
3. Biden's overblown rhetoric is what's really subverting democracy
"The people who spent Nov. 2020 through Jan. 21 preaching sermons about the strength and the sanctity of our democracy are now undertaking to delegitimize the next election in case they lose it."
4. Biden's speech shows why the filibuster is necessary
"A president shouting that 52 senators and millions of Americans are racist unless he gets whatever he wants … is the best possible argument for preserving — preserving! — the Senate rules that extend deliberation, force bipartisan compromise, and let cooler heads prevail." McConnell's views could influence moderate lawmakers on the fence about whether to change the filibuster.
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