in the state continue their audit of the 2020 election
results, three dozen Arizona
Democrats are pleading with Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema
to do everything in her power to pass a comprehensive voting rights
Members of the state House and Senate, in a letter to the Democratic
senator, cite hundreds of voter suppression
bills introduced in states by Republicans since President Joe Biden
's 2020 election victory that add new barriers to the voting process.
“The 2020 general election saw record-breaking levels of voter participation across the country,” the letter states, “but instead of celebrating this historic achievement, our freedom to vote is under attack
in state legislatures across the country.”
Legislation enacted in Arizona “will disproportionately impact young voters
, low-income voters, and voters of color,” according to the group, and Arizona’s GOP-led state Senate has hired a company for a 2020 recount
, which could fuel further voter suppression efforts.
The letter's signers collectively represent roughly three-quarters of Arizona's Democratic caucus.
“You are aware that there is a solution,” they stated.
“We are calling on you with respect and urgency to stand up in this crucial moment for our state and for our country and make the promise of our democracy
real for all of us.” — House & Senate Dem members urge @SenatorSinema to reform the filibuster
and pass the #ForthePeopleAct. pic.twitter.com/QFcat3zM7L — Arizona House Democrats
(@AZHouseDems) June 9, 2021
While Sinema supports the House-passed For the People Act
, which she co-sponsored, her stance on maintaining Senate filibuster rules makes her one of the bill's biggest obstacles to passage. No Republicans in the Senate's evenly divided chamber support the For the People Act, which would require at least 60 votes
to overcome a filibuster.
“Given Republican obstruction,” the letter says, “the bill will die in the United States Senate
unless members are willing to work
outside the box. We call on you to do everything necessary, including reforming the filibuster, to pass the ‘For the People Act.’ Our democracy is too important to be sacrificed on the altar of archaic and anti-democratic Senate procedures like the filibuster.”
“As fellow Arizona legislators, we respectfully and urgently request that you stand up in this critical moment for our state and country to make the promise of democracy a reality for all of us.”
Sinema has so far refused to budge on the idea of abolishing the filibuster, defending it as a tool for bipartisanship
, putting her and Sen. Joe Manchin
(D-W.Va.) in the way of the Biden administration
's top legislative priorities.