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Statement: Republicans Expected to Filibuster, Block Democracy Reform Legislation

WASHINGTON, D.C – According to media reports, immediately after expected Senate passage of the budget resolution, the chamber is anticipated to take procedural votes on whether to debate S.1, the For the People Act; the DISCLOSE Act, which would end secret spending in elections; and a fair redistricting measure to prevent extreme partisan and racial gerrymandering. Using the filibuster, Republicans are expected to block consideration of each of these bills. Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen, issued the following statement:

“The expected rapid-fire Republican use of the filibuster to block consideration of crucial democracy reforms will make several things clear:

  1. Republicans will use the filibuster to block democracy measures, period. They will use it to block the comprehensive package Americans desperately need and overwhelmingly support, the For the People Act. They will use it to block the most basic reform – forcing disclosure of political spending and ending Dark Money, a measure with overwhelming support from all Americans, regardless of party. They will use it to stop urgent measures to block the rigging of elections through extreme gerrymandering.
  2. Democrats are united in supporting forward movement on far-reaching democracy measures.
  3. The nation now faces a stark choice between leaving the filibuster untouched or protecting our democracy. With state legislatures across the country undertaking the most sustained campaign against voting rights and basic democratic functioning in the last half-century, that’s no choice at all.

“Everyone should understand that the expected failed votes are not failures – they are part of the plan. The purpose of holding the votes is to illustrate these three points.

“When the Senate returns from recess, Senate Democrats must act on the logical response to these three realities: they must settle on a workaround to the filibuster and immediately pass the For the People Act. With demand from the American people growing more intense and urgent, that is what the Senate will do.”