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Majority Leader Schumer Floor Remarks Before Filing Cloture On The John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act

Washington, D.C. –  Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) today spoke on the Senate floor in advance of filing cloture on the motion to proceed to the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, setting up a vote on Wednesday. Below are Senator Schumer’s remarks:

Tonight I am filing cloture on a motion to proceed on the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.

That means that the Senate is going to take a first vote on whether or not we even debate this voting rights bill—even debate it—on Wednesday.

Our democracy relies on the guarantee of free and fair elections. Across the country we are witnessing a coordinated assault on the integrity of our electoral process. We must advance critical reforms to protect the freedom to vote, fulfilling the life and legacy of our late colleague John Lewis.

If there is any issue that deserves debate in this chamber, it’s protecting voting rights. I know that both parties have differences on this important issue, but Republicans shouldn’t be afraid to debate the bill. If the Senate votes to open debate to this bill, I am prepared to offer an open and honest and full-fledged process here on the Senate floor, where Republican amendments will be made in order and allowed and debated.

If Republican Senators have different ideas on how to achieve a stronger democracy, they owe it to the American people to come forward and debate their ideas. Simply standing silent with their arms crossed, refusing to allow the Senate to function, is unacceptable.