Jun 17, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Stacey Abrams says she supports Manchin's voting rights compromise

Stacey Abrams said on CNN Thursday that she could "absolutely" support the policy demands that Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) has outlined for a compromise on voting reform, including voter ID.

Why it matters: Abrams — a former candidate for Georgia governor and founder of Fair Fight Action, a group created to fight voter suppression — has been a leading voice on voting rights in the Democratic Party.

Driving the news: Manchin, the only Democratic senator who has not signed on to the party's voting rights legislation, released a series of policy demands related to the "For the People Act" on Wednesday.

  • They include banning partisan gerrymandering, requiring voter ID, having at least 15 consecutive days of early voting, and making Election Day a public holiday.
  • Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer triggered the process Wednesday night to begin voting on election reform — including a potential Manchin amendment — as soon as next week.

What she's saying: "What Sen. Manchin is putting forward are some basic building blocks we need to ensure that democracy is accessible no matter your geography," Abrams said.

  • "Those provisions that he is setting forth are strong ones that will create a level playing field, will create standards that do not vary from state to state and, I think, will ensure that every American has improved access to the right to vote despite the onslaught of state legislation seeking to restrict access to the right to vote."
  • Abrams called it a misconception fueled by Republicans that Democrats are opposed to voter ID: "No one has ever objected to having to prove who you are to vote. It's been part of our nation's history since the inception of voting. What's been problematic is the type of restrictive I.D. that we've seen pop up."
  • "This is a first and important step to preserving our democracy. ... If Joe Manchin and the U.S. senators who support this legislation are willing to come together on a compromise, then we will make progress"

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