State Watch

Stacey Abrams calls on young voters of color to support election reform bill

Democratic rising star Stacey Abrams’s group Fair Fight Action on Tuesday unveiled a new campaign aimed at mobilizing youth voters of color to get behind the For the People Act, Democrats’ sweeping election reform bill that’s currently stalled in the Senate.

Dubbed Hot Call Summer, the campaign will run through the end of June and feature a “three-stop regional virtual tour” which Abrams will headline along with election workers, elected officials and other public figures from across the country.

“With voting rights under attack in 48 out of 50 state legislatures across the country, the moment has never been more urgent, and it will take all of us to ensure that Congress passes the voting rights protections our country and democracy desperately need,” Abrams told supporters in an email, according to CBS News, who first reported the campaign.

In a press release, Fair Fight Action said that the aim of Hot Call Summer is “to drive daily phone calls to U.S. Senators from every state in the weeks leading up to the Senate vote on the For the People Act.”

Abrams’s group will encourage these phone calls through “a national digital media buy” as well as by texting “over 10 million voters in the 2022 battleground states that have seen anti-voter bills pushed in state legislatures.”

Democrats excelled at appealing to young voters last election cycle, especially those of color, with the vast majority voting for now-President Biden on Election Day.

Youth support also paid dividends for the party down-ballot, as Georgia — where Fair Fight Action is based — elected the Rev. Rafael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, both Democrats, to the Senate.

Since Biden’s electoral victory over former President Trump, Republican-led state legislatures have introduced hundreds of restrictive voting laws, fueled by the thoroughly debunked notion from Trump that the election was stolen from him.

Georgia, Arizona, Florida, Iowa and Montana have all passed sweeping bills that will restrict access to the ballot box in some way.

Democrats on the Hill and voting rights proponents have been adamant in saying that the For the People Act, also known as S. 1 and H.R. 1, and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act are the solutions to stopping states from passing new voting restrictions.

H.R. 1 would implement a laundry list of federal oversights, such as mandating states to offer mail-in ballots, early voting periods and same-day voter registration. It would also create automatic voter registration and make Election Day a national holiday for federal workers.

The bill named after the late congressman and civil rights icon would reinstate a federal pre-clearance requiring states with a history of discriminatory voting practices to gain approval from the Justice Department before making changes to their voting procedures.

That said, multiple obstacles stand in the way of the bills being signed into law. The biggest hurdle is the Senate filibuster, the procedural rule that requires 60 “yes” votes for debate on a bill to cease and for a floor vote to be held.

With only a tie-breaking advantage in the otherwise evenly split Senate and nearly zero bipartisan support for either bill, Democrats would need to remove the filibuster to force floor votes.

But, moderate Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) are both firmly against axing the filibuster.

The lack of caucus unity has been the source of increasing tension among Democrats, as Congress’s summer recess quickly approaches.

Tags Donald Trump Fair Fight Action For the People Act Joe Biden Joe Manchin John Lewis John Lewis Voting Rights Act Jon Ossoff Kyrsten Sinema Stacey Abrams

Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Regular the hill posts

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File - A Chevrolet Bolt is displayed at the Philadelphia Auto Show, Jan. 27, 2023, in Philadelphia. Electric vehicles are far less reliable than gasoline-powered cars, trucks and SUVs, mainly because most automakers are still learning how to build a completely new power system, according to this year's auto reliability survey by Consumer Reports.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
File - A Chevrolet Bolt is displayed at the Philadelphia Auto Show, Jan. 27, 2023, in Philadelphia. Electric vehicles are far less reliable than gasoline-powered cars, trucks and SUVs, mainly because most automakers are still learning how to build a completely new power system, according to this year's auto reliability survey by Consumer Reports.(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

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In this photo released by the Governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev telegram channel, a rescuer gestures as he helps people during an evacuation after storm and flooding in Sevastopol, Crimea, Monday, Nov. 27, 2023. A storm in the Black Sea took down power grids and left almost half a million people without power after it flooded roads, ripped up trees and damaged buildings in Crimea, Russian state news agency Tass said. (Governor of Sevastopol Mikhail Razvozhayev's telegram channel via AP)

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