Sen. Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia) is threatening to kill the voting rights reform bill S.1 which passed in the House as H.R. 1 earlier in March. The voting reform bill is aimed at reducing gerrymandering, adding transparency requirements for political advertisements and creating an automatic national voter registration system. Manchin as Democrat’s 50th vote has tremendous power, leaving Democrats little choice but to work with the prickly centrist.

“Pushing through legislation of this magnitude on a partisan basis may garner short-term benefits, but will inevitably only exacerbate the distrust that millions of Americans harbor against the U.S. government,” Manchin said in a statement released Tuesday.

Manchin noted that he would vote ‘no’ on S.1 in its current state. He believes that Democrats should submit bipartisan proposals “instead of arguing about the election reforms on which we disagree.“ Manchin’s comments, however, may fall on deaf Republican ears, as many GOP have already vowed to vote down the bill.

Manchin closed his statement saying, “America’s declining trust in the government and each other makes it harder to solve key problems. That trust will continue to diminish unless we, as members of Congress, transcend partisanship.”


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