Sen. Joe Manchin met with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday afternoon in a last-ditch effort to push for the Democrats’ compromise election reform bill.

McConnell called the bill “a solution in search of a problem” on Tuesday morning and declared that Republicans “will not be supporting it.”

But Manchin remains optimistic. “I work with everybody, I want to find out where they are at, what we can do,” he said. “I’m working on the voting thing very hard and I’m out there talking to every Republican I can. I was seeing if there was a pathway forward.”

The legislation still has zero Republican sponsors. It’s unlikely the necessary 10 Senate Republicans will sign onto the bill to move it forward.


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“This is not something that the federal government has been historically involved in for good reason. Every state conducts elections differently,” said McConnell.

Manchin still believes he can secure the necessary Republican votes. “I always think we can get at least 10,” he said. “I think it’s very important, I’m working as hard as I can.”

The new bill proposes establishing federally mandated voting rules and expanding access to mail-in ballots.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), who spearheaded the legislation, said the bill will “set basic national standards to make sure all Americans can cast their ballots in the way that works best for them, regardless of what zip code they live in.”

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer noted that “failure is not an option” and that Republicans should show their support for the bill. “Let me be clear, Republicans refusing to support anything on voting rights is not an excuse for Democrats to do nothing,” he said. “The Senate must act.”

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