Arizona Democrat Sen. Mark Kelly announced his support for eliminating the filibuster to allow House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to federalize elections on Wednesday.
“[Kelly] will support a change to the filibuster rule, The Arizona Republic has learned, showing for the first time a willingness to bend on an issue that has tied the Senate in knots for a year as the Democratic legislative agenda has stalled,” the state paper reported. “Kelly, who is up for reelection this year, will back a ‘talking filibuster’ rule only for the proposed voting rights legislation that he co-sponsors.”
While branded as a “voting rights” bill by Democrats and the corporate press to shroud the legislation in the moral righteousness of civil rights, the proposed measure would impose sweeping regulations to take over election standards that open the door for mass voter fraud. The “Freedom to Vote Act” eliminates safeguards for election integrity by banning witness signature validation on absentee ballots and preventing election officials from independently verifying voter eligibility. The bill also requires states to offer same-day registration, enhancing the likelihood of fraud as officials lack sufficient time to ensure the accuracy of the information provided.
Kelly’s endorsement of the Senate rule change comes as congressional Democrats mount a crusade to pass major legislation to overhaul elections ahead of the November midterms. The Senate filibuster, which allows the minority party to block legislation short of 60 votes, stands in the way as an institutional roadblock to prevent a split 50-50 chamber from imposing radical reforms, with Democrats granted the majority by virtue of White House control.
The bill, co-sponsored by every Democrat in the Senate including Kelly, remains stalled as long as Senate rules remain unchanged. Two Democrat senators, however, including Kelly’s Arizona colleague Kyrsten Sinema and Joe Manchin of West Virginia, have refused to back the filibuster’s destruction. On Tuesday, Manchin dug in on his opposition to the rule change, even welcoming a primary challenge over the issue.
“The majority of my colleagues in the Democratic caucus have changed their minds. I respect that,” Manchin told Politico. “They have a right to change their minds. I haven’t. I hope they respect that too. I’ve never changed my mind on the filibuster.”
“I’ve been primaried my entire life. That would not be anything new for me,” Manchin added.
Kelly’s endorsement of the Democrats’ nuclear option to back President Joe Biden’s agenda might spell trouble for the senator, who narrowly clinched the seat in the 2020 special election by less than 3 points and fewer than 100,000 votes.
In November, two months before Biden’s nationwide approval rating reached the second-lowest of any White House occupant after one year in office, the president’s approval in Arizona was shown at only 42 percent, according to a survey conducted by OH Predictive Insights.