Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to Axios Closer for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Axios on your phone

Get breaking news and scoops on the go with the Axios app.

Download for free.

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). Photo: Aaron P. Bernstein/Getty Images

The Democrats' massive voting rights package — and in turn, the debate over eliminating the filibuster — will be brought to the forefront Tuesday through a procedural vote.

Why it matters: The vote on the For the People Act will be a key indicator of whether Democrats will move forward with their most controversial — but highest priority — legislation, or will be forced to retreat.

  • If all 50 Democrats get on board, then the conversation about how to proceed — including calls for abandoning, or at a minimum revising, the filibuster — will ramp up.
  • Preserving voting rights is expected to be a flashpoint for the midterm elections — for both parties.
  • And many Democrats fear that if they don't eliminate the filibuster to pass their agenda while in control of both chambers of Congress and the White House, their supporters will retaliate at the polls, or by not voting at all.

Driving the news: The view among Democratic leaders and the White House is they can't set up bypassing the filibuster until they get everyone together on a voting rights package.

  • All eyes are on Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), who, as of now, has not been clear about whether he'll vote to advance the For the People Act for further debate.
  • Regardless of how he votes, the motion will fail because it has no shot of getting the 10 Republican votes needed to achieve the 60-vote threshold for major legislation.

But, but, but: Two Democratic senators — Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona — have said since January they're not going to get rid of the filibuster.

  • And even if Manchin votes to clear this procedural hurdle, it doesn't mean he'll vote in favor of the package, or change the filibuster.
  • "There's still a million outs for Joe Manchin, regardless of how he votes" Tuesday, a senior Senate Democratic aide told Axios.
  • But a successful procedural vote would kick off the next series of steps in both the voting rights fight and the question of how to deal with the filibuster.

Between the lines: This is a bill Democrats never thought would get 60 votes in the Senate.

  • When the For the People Act was introduced in the House, it was largely seen as an overly ambitious messaging bill with no shot of becoming law while President Trump ruled the White House and Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) led the Senate.
  • But once Joe Biden became president and Democrats took control of both chambers of Congress, the party's progressive wing saw the bill as its chance to make good on a promise to overhaul the nation's election laws and strong-arm more moderate Democrats into eliminating the filibuster.
  • The problem with this approach is it's since splintered the party over the decision and puts several Democratic senators — particularly those up for re-election in competitive districts — in an awkward position about how they vote.

The big question: When does Vice President Kamala Harris get more involved?

  • The president has made clear this package is a top priority and has charged Harris with getting it over the finish line.
  • As of now, she's applied hardly any public pressure on Congress.
  • Expect this to change as the midterms approach.

Timing: The current Senate majority leader, Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), has said he wants to vote on a voting rights package in August.

  • That deadline is closer than it may appear, since the Senate is already breaking for a two-week recess starting next week.

Go deeper

McConnell demands Schumer, Pelosi delink infrastructure deal from spending plans

Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) called on President Biden Monday to ensure Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) follow his lead on delinking the bipartisan infrastructure deal from plans to spend trillions more on Democratic priorities.

Why it matters: McConnell has not yet endorsed the $1 trillion bipartisan deal, which Biden struck with five Republican and five Democratic senators last week. His potential opposition could sway other Republican senators and prevent the legislation from winning the 60 votes it needs to pass the Senate.

Mark Warner emerges as moderates' dealmaker-in-chief

Sens. Mark Warner (D-Va.), Mitt Romney (R-Utah) and Krysten Sinema (D-Ariz.) head to a meeting with President Biden last week. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

As Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain navigate the legislative minefield of the next few months, they'll often turn to a moderate Democrat who gets far less ink than Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) or Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.).

The big picture: Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) has become a pivotal player in the multi-trillion-dollar negotiations that will shape the Democrats' electoral prospects, Joe Biden's presidency and the future of the country.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jun 29, 2021 - Energy & Environment

White House sells infrastructure deal amid green angst

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The White House is trying to build support for clean energy and climate pieces of the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure outline at a time when activists are calling the plan far too modest.

Why it matters: The White House faces growing urgency to corral progressive lawmakers now that President Biden has abandoned threats to veto the plan unless a much larger, Democrats-only package moves too.