After extensive pressure from activists, lawmakers, former lawmakers, the NAACP and other organizations, Joe Manchin is finally revealing what he would be open to as part of the new voting rights legislation.
According to NBC News, Manchin would be willing to support Election Day as a federal holiday when people get the full day to be able to vote, including standing in line for hour upon hour. He also said that he'd support 15 consecutive days of early voting for federal elections mandated in all states, "and automatic voter registration through state departments of motor vehicles."
He also encouraged a compromise with voter identification but said that it should be acceptable to use utility bills as proof of identity as well as photo identification, but no photo identification should be needed. The mandated photo identification is what many groups oppose because it puts an additional burden on the elderly who may not drive or don't have access to go get an updated photo I.D. Other alternatives to voter I.D. laws are that if states require it then they offer voters a free option so that it isn't considered a poll fee or poll tax.
Manchin didn't speak to Texas lawmakers who came to the U.S. Capitol Tuesday to discuss the dangers of the Texas voter suppression laws. However, lawmakers said that Manchin was meeting with others about voting rights legislation.
Democrats want to craft a voting bill that makes major changes to campaign finance reform that demands funding disclosures and other items. Manchin doesn't appear to support that.
Manchin was also caught on tape showing that he's willing to alter the filibuster, which is another change in tone from the West Virginia senator.