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Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer arrives on Capitol Hill last Wednesday. Photo: Kent Nishimura/L.A. Times via Getty Images

Despite Sen. Joe Manchin's desertion, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer tells colleagues in a letter this morning that he plans a vote on a revised Build Back Better "very early in the new year."

  • Schumer said he wants every senator to have "the opportunity to make their position known on the Senate floor, not just on television."
  • "We are going to vote on a revised version of the House-passed Build Back Better Act — and we will keep voting on it until we get something done," Schumer writes.

Why it matters: Schumer's letter gives Democrats, who control the executive and legislative branches, a path toward restoring momentum as the midterm year starts, rather than opening with an empty plate.

  • Schumer also said the Senate will consider voting rights legislation in January — "as early as the first week back."
  • President Biden last week called voting rights "the single-biggest" domestic issue.

Between the lines: These plans put Manchin on the spot twice, Axios managing editor Margaret Talev notes.

Reality check: Schumer acknowledged that despite accomplishments to be proud of, "this session has also led to moments of deep discontent and frustration.

  • But he said Manchin's "pronouncements" won't "deter us from continuing to try to find a way forward. We simply cannot give up."
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Go deeper

Arkansas Senators: Don't bust filibuster

Sen. Tom Cotton; Photo: Tasos Katopodis/UPI/Bloomberg via Getty Images. Sen. John Boozman; Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Both of Arkansas' Republican Sens. John Boozman and Tom Cotton made statements this week in defense of the chamber's filibuster rule.

Driving the news: President Biden attended the Senate Democratic caucus lunch Thursday to make a case for reforming the filibuster to pass voting rights legislation.

King family leads Arizona rally to mobilize support for voting rights bills

Martin Luther King III addresses a "Let's Finish the Job for the People" rally near the U.S. Capitol on Sept. 14, 2021. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Family members of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. honored his birthday Saturday with a rally in Arizona to mobilize support for voting rights legislation.

Driving the news: The rally comes days after Martin Luther King III admonished Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) on Thursday, saying history will remember her "unkindly" for voicing her opposition to abolishing the filibuster to pass major voting rights bills.

Starbucks drops worker vaccine or test requirement after SCOTUS ruling

Photo: Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Starbucks has dropped plans to require that U.S. workers get the COVID vaccine or submit to weekly testing, the company announced Tuesday in a memo to employees.

Why it matters: The company's decision comes in response to the Supreme Court's ruling last week to block the Biden administration's COVID-19 vaccine-or-test requirement for large employers.