Senate takes up voting rights bill

The For The People Act would change how voters are registered and elections are administered.
8:16 | 05/11/21

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Transcript for Senate takes up voting rights bill
Meanwhile the senate rules committee is consider amendments today to a massive federal voting bill among other changes the for the people act would automatically register eligible voters. Mandate fifteen days of early voting. Allow absentee voting without an excuse. Where's restricts gerrymandering. And make political donations more transparent. The bill passed the housing market faces long odds in this and it. Both the senate majority leader Chuck Schumer and minority leader Mitch McConnell spoke at today's hearing an indicator of how central this issue is for both parties. So let's bring in two leaders from outside government who are also involved in this fight Randi Weingarten the president of the American Federation of Teachers. And run accepting the executive director of thank you both. For being here today. Yeah oh. Rich radio few first up why is the teachers union involved in this. So look I'm voting is. I'm she do our democracy and and ER. IRA just happened to be out so space teacher. I am where I am what we talk about it turns some raised. It is how our country became democracy and what unique to do. To. And create good will and the boys that are equal and so what it is foundational. To permanent. Shouldn't people in the aged in Citic incident cents in pre. Education was started. In all fifty states and Puerto Rico. How I was civic participation. You have to actually happy G each. Can't have a way you can't have this passion. Floating you can't go hacking old taxes. Org and being different kinds of waves that limit access. It should be the people who who are howling. Order or politicians it should eight politicians. Deciding. General let it should. And run as we saw these as we see these bills moving in Georgia and Florida Texas Arizona and elsewhere. How are they impacting. Communities of color voters black voters are Latino voters what would the for the people act due to counteract that. Yes so we are seeing hundreds. Of pieces of legislation and they state level being launched as basically an attack by Republicans. At the state level on the right to vote. And Republicans know full well. Their ideas are not popular so what they're doing is they are trying to pass rules. Make it harder for people to vote because they know. Only way for them to hold on to power is to control coupe gets to vote for them and their boat and they're they're choosing folk center with them and so. They are making it harder for black and brown people to vote at this deet. Local and federal level and that is your strategy. That is their total to make gold. And random. What's what specifically do you think will be helpful in this federal package. To ensure that voting rights are preserved across the country as these laws are bar being fought over and passed in many cases. So Terry I'm so glad that you talked about it and you had Katie hearts are both forehand. Because this is about. The sanctity of the vote. It's about making sure that everybody has access and do it used to be that route used the low low and Alan. A bunch of different things that would just protect access eight. Is he John Lewis voting rights act. It's the bottom ensuring that. Though are now ten. It's dealing way is Jerry can't drink isn't saying haven't neutral commission to decide what alliance should be. It also says. That now we should get our money. How how to or at least each tricks aren't about it so that everybody knows it's going aren't. It's not it's kind of stingers at just half and in Georgia. We are. You're gonna get into trouble you will. You don't create a criminal. If you get water. Somebody who's on why in. And so you don't. Countries in the in the world. Actually had voting as a responsibility. They actually want people to bow and that's what. Youths who want to do. And and these there's about when he was in ways. That. Ask one and HR one attempt to keep its. And Randy senator McConnell has called this a stunning one party takeover of voting laws that's a quote so what do you say to that accusation that to pass a federal law like this. Is democratic overreach. You know something. Voting rights act. In 1960. Us. House Republicans and Democrat. George Bush. I did or sick to authorize the this is is that colonel wants party won't as a ruse to me. We speak a lie. Election it was not re air and that is now you'll all of these things to restrict loan. So I don't care which one it rightly you hope people it's Republicans or Democrats. They don't your party boarding at. You want eagle to decide. Let the visuals are not wait around. And or run out what are you doing to try to get this passed in the senate and overcome. Republicans a long shot really and potentially some moderate Democrat the opposition here clearly McConnell is ready for showdown as a wanted it'll help his party. Well look the for the people act is wildly popular for many of the reasons ring indeed just stayed at and that's because. Oaks know all across this country no matter what political party they've done a fine win. Our democracy is broken and it's not working for axe it's not response to. And we sought and insurrection in January 6 week hit rock vitamins a and we barely walk back. The brink of authoritarian ends up and ultimately. People know that we deserve to have a democracy that is reflective that is a aired that works all of us and that is evil. So we need every single person now today to called air two US senators and Indiana and Dayton burying the for the people act to the floor and they vote yes. Timing is of essence and we're seeing that has Republicans. Once these attacks at the state level they refused to accept that there are no longer in power and air using it. They are very tempting to deploy a political power grab but what the for the people that act is. It's a political power grab for the people not for a party. It's for us. Government by inform the people it is essential the window is open now we must. Asked we must access. And it will it will restore. Our democracy. Herb black brown wait for a all walks of life all throughout this country. To ensure money doesn't drown out our voices it'll ensure our politicians are elected by the people and not the other way around. And so much more it is historic. Wildly popular and it must pass a weird mere encouraging everyone to call their senators. Today tomorrow and every day until they actually passes legislation and president Biden signs it into law. I Randi Weingarten Rana acting thank you both. Think he'll.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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