US President, Joe Biden has accused Republicans of defending voter suppression efforts that amounted to “a Jim Crow era in the 21st Century” in a scathing statement Tuesday after Republican senators blocked debate on a sweeping Democrat-backed election overhaul.
Senate lawmakers voted 50-50 on whether to open debate on the bill known as the “For the People Act,” leaving Democrats short of the 60 votes required to overcome a GOP filibuster.
The vote marked a major setback for a controversial legislation that Biden and other prominent Democrats have prepared for months in response to the passage of election security bills in Republican-led states.
Georgia and other states moved to tighten election laws following a contentious 2020 election cycle rife with claims from Donald Trump of voter fraud.
If enacted, the Biden-backed bill would make sweeping changes to U.S. elections. The legislation would put nonpartisan commissions in charge of gerrymandering rather than party-controlled state legislatures, expand early and absentee voting, and overhaul the campaign finance system, among other changes.