From today’s AP News:
Congress in the coming weeks will consider shoring up voting and election laws — efforts that will reflect the vast gulf between Democrats and Republicans on protecting a foundation of American democracy.
The parties will unveil separate and competing proposals that will have little chance of success in a divided government, but are likely to be used to rally supporters ahead of the 2024 elections.
House Republicans on Monday released a proposal that would tighten voting laws and take a defiant stand against concerns that laws passed in recent years by GOP-controlled state legislatures disadvantage some voters. Democrats, meanwhile, are preparing to reintroduce their own proposals to set federal voting standards and restore protections under the Voting Rights Act.
Even as the country prepares for the next presidential election, the separate measures will underscore how the two major parties have acted with little cohesion and often are completely at odds over voting procedures.
House Republicans said they were sending a message by releasing their plan in Atlanta on the eve of Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game. MLB withdrew its midsummer game from the city’s suburbs in 2021 over objections to the state enacting restrictive voting laws.
The event also kickstarted a push in the House to pass the GOP’s “American Confidence in Elections Act.”
“This legislation is the most substantive and conservative election integrity legislation that will come before the House in over a generation,” Wisconsin Republican Rep. Bryan Steil, chair of the House Administration Committee, said Monday at a news conference held at a diner in an Atlanta suburb.
“It works to boost voters’ confidence and uphold the Constitution by ensuring states maintain primary control over elections, not the federal government,” Steil said at a hearing last month. “This is in stark contrast to House Democrats’ efforts in the last two congresses, which would have nationalized our election system and centralized it in Washington, D.C.”
Since the 2020 presidential election, many Republican-led state legislatures have added ID requirements to mail voting, curtailed or banned the use of ballot drop boxes and limited the ability of someone to return a ballot on behalf of someone else.
Read the complete story here.