Sunday, June 20

What does the Kamala Harris assignment on the right to vote mean in the United States?

President Biden rejects legislation that oppresses the right to vote.

Brandon Bell / Getty Images

Amid effort by Republicans in Texas to pass a bill that suppresses minority voters, including African Americans and Latinos, the President Joe Biden appointed the vice president Kamala Harris to lead efforts against these types of plans that limit electoral participation.

The president announced his decision in a speech Tuesday on the Tulsa Massacre in Oklahoma, where the president noted that Republican plans like the one in Texas are “an unprecedented assault” on democracy.

“I am asking Vice President Harris to assist in these efforts, to lead them among her many other responsibilities.”said the president.

Vice President Harris confirmed the effort she will lead, according to a CNN report.

“In the days and weeks to come, I will engage the American people and work with voting rights organizations, community organizations and the private sector to help strengthen and elevate voting rights efforts across the country,” Harris said.

He added that his efforts will also focus on Congress, in order to prevent the advancement of laws similar to the one in Texas, which the governor Greg Abbott it will be considered during a special session for approval, opening up a legal battle that may reach the Supreme Court.

According to the plan of the Republicans in that entity, The new law would empower partisan election observers to pressure voters, make it difficult to vote by mail, and prohibit car voting, mailboxes, and the use of mobile structures to collect ballots., measures that were taken as if they made a “check list” of the criticisms of the voting system made by the former president Donald Trump to defend his theory of vote theft.

All the actions would apply in population settlements, where a high percentage of voters are supposed to lean towards the Democrats.

The spokeswoman Jen Psaki He indicated that Vice President Harris’ assignment keeps the “strategic partnership” with President Biden on track.

“He actually asked to address the issue and leadership on voting rights. It is a subject that she is personally committed to and is passionate about, ”said Psaki. “That includes working with members of Congress, no doubt, to move the legislation forward, something the president strongly supports.”

Expert alert

In the midst of this debate in Texas that has become a national concern, more than 100 scholars on democracy issues signed a public statement about the danger to democracy.

“We are scholars of democracy who have watched the recent deterioration in US elections and liberal democracy with growing alarm,” the experts say. “Specifically, we have observed with deep concern how Republican-led state legislatures across the country have proposed or implemented in recent months what we consider radical changes to basic electoral procedures“.

They add that those efforts follow unproven and intentionally destructive allegations about a stolen election – that is, the speech that dozens of congressmen and former President Trump defended.

“These initiatives are transforming several states into political systems that no longer meet the minimum conditions for free and fair elections,” they warned. “Therefore, our entire democracy is now in jeopardy“.

The experts asked Congress to pass reforms that maintain national voting standards, even if it is necessary to overcome “filibuster”.

Among the signers are Pippa Norris, Daniel Ziblatt, Steven Levitsky, Francis Fukuyama, Jacob Hacker and Lee Drutman, one of the organizers of the public message.

“We wanted to create a strong statement from a wide range of scholars, including many who have studied democratic backsliding, to make clear that democracy in America is genuinely under threat,” said Drutman.

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