Democrats Bypass GOP Obstruction With Move To Protect Voting Rights

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The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee — a committee within the Democratic Party that handles Senate races — is investing $10 million in what CNN describes as “voter protection efforts” in the lead-up to the 2022 midterm elections, according to a new report from the network. Around the country, Republican state leaders have proposed — and in some cases implemented — suppressive new election restrictions that bear no connection to actual documented election integrity problems but do make it more difficult, especially for disadvantaged Americans, to vote.

The $10 million will be spent as part of a program called “Defend the Vote,” according to CNN, which also reports that the effort “will highlight Republican efforts to suppress the vote, support litigation in key states and fund voter protection organizers on the ground.” Sen. Gary Peters (D-Mich.), who was narrowly re-elected in 2020 and leads the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC), commented as follows:

‘Republicans have launched an unprecedented campaign to restrict voting rights, but we are fighting back — and the DSCC will use every tool at our disposal to protect Americans’ right to participate in our democracy.’

Peters also said that the program “will help ensure Democrats have the legal and battleground infrastructure we need to defend Americans’ voting rights and win races across the country.” The voters who stand to be more negatively impacted by suppressive election restrictions that have been put forward by Republicans have frequently included parts of the Democratic base.

For instance, Democrats often do better in larger cities, and in Georgia, Republicans recently banned the usage of mobile polling places — which were used in the 2020 election cycle in the Atlanta area. In Texas, Republicans have (so far unsuccessfully) tried to ban drive-thru polling places, which function pretty much as their name suggests and were used around Houston last year. That Texas legislation was only stopped — for now — because Democrats in the state House walked out of the chamber shortly before the deadline for dealing with the bill, thereby eliminating the quorum that was required by the state House in order to conduct legislative business.

Many of the suppressive new voting restrictions in question have been presented under the guise of election security, but no substantive evidence has ever emerged anywhere in the country of any systematic integrity problem with last year’s elections, no matter feverish claims to the contrary from ex-President Trump. No matter their total disconnection from reality, Trump’s election lies remain dangerous in part because of their use as a justification for these suppressive new election restrictions.