Recalcitrant senators Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) haven't been willing to back the Democratic voting rights legislation or end the filibuster, and have instead offered their own competing plans and insisted on overcoming Republican obstruction to their party's agenda.
Both Sinema and Manchin have been unwilling to back the For The People Act without the support of at least 10 GOP senators -- which is basically impossible -- and, in a new Daily Beast column, Democratic strategist Max Burns urged Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) to challenge them to find 10 Republicans to back their competing voting rights bills or lose the filibuster fight.
"Voter suppression is one of the few unifying ideas left in a Republican Party hollowed out and pillaged by Trumpism," Burns wrote. "Manchin has as much chance at persuading them to undermine their own electoral fortunes as he does at convincing Elizabeth Warren to pass a tax cut for Big Tech."
Republican legislatures have imposed new restrictions on voting after President Joe Biden defeated Donald Trump, and Burns said Senate Democrats must do whatever they can to protect those rights.
"When Sinema and Manchin fail to deliver on their big talk about the power of bipartisanship, Schumer and Senate Democrats must be prepared to force a serious effort to kill the filibuster," he wrote. "Without it, GOP efforts to undermine the vote in 2022 and 2024 will proceed with impunity, undermining the marginalized communities that delivered a Democratic Senate and White House on the explicit promise that they would be protected from Republican reprisals."
"Those reprisals are now here," Burns added, "and Senate Democrats are nowhere to be found."