CNN Sunday Puts Kinzinger On The Spot For Anti-Voting Rights Stance

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During this Sunday’s edition of CNN’s State of the Union, host Jake Tapper put Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) on the spot over his votes against two monumental voting rights bills that came up in the House, including the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and the For the People Act. Each of the bills, if enacted, would protect voting rights at the federal level in unique ways, with the John Lewis Voting Rights Act re-instating requirements for federal pre-approval before certain changes to the running of elections and the For the People Act making voting in federal elections more accessible, among other policy components.

Kinzinger has publicly spoken about being concerned for the continuance of democracy in the United States against Trump’s attacks, but he nonetheless voted against both of those bills. On CNN, he characterized the bills as essentially bad faith efforts by Democrats — although notably, he failed to put forward any alternative that would cover similar ground and that Republicans would back. (Admittedly, his time was short.)

Tapper initially asked as follows:

‘You have opposed both bills from the Democratic Party that are intended to strengthen protection for voters, [including] the John Lewis Voting Rights Act… Why did you not support those bills, and is there a bipartisan effort that you and other Republicans could get behind that could actually protect the rights of voters and get through the House and Senate for President Biden to sign?’

Kinzinger replied with the following:

‘I certainly hope there is. I think there is — I think there’s been discussions in the Senate, from last I’ve heard. Look, you can call a bill the voting rights act, and then left-wing Twitter goes nuts about this, by the way, and they can say: you voted against voting rights, without even looking to the details of this.’

Kinzinger subsequently insisted that the preclearance provisions in the original Voting Rights Act from 1965 were “intended to be temporary.” “Preclearance” refers in this context to pre-approval by federal authorities before the implementation of certain changes to the handling of elections, with the hope underlying that policy that certain instances of voter suppression can be stopped before they begin. Meanwhile, Kinzinger added as follows:

‘Yes, we can get to a solution. The problem is — you know, I admonish my side all the time about playing politics. The Democrats have to quit playing politics on some of this too. You can call it the For the People Act… If we actually went into this as adults, with real discussions, I think we can solve stuff. But instead, we just wait for these Twitter comments.’

Check out Kinzinger’s comments below: