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On Capitol Hill, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Monday he will schedule a vote on rolling back the filibuster by January 17 — Martin Luther King Jr. Day — unless Republicans end their obstruction of voting rights legislation. Currently a pair of bills — the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act — don’t have the 60-vote supermajority needed to overcome a Republican filibuster in the 100-member Senate.
By Monday, nearly 60 groups had signed on to an open letter asking senators to reform the legislative filibuster to protect democracy. They cited a recent deal that saw Republican leader Mitch McConnell agree to a one-time exemption to the filibuster allowing Democrats to raise the ceiling on the national debt, writing, “Just as we needed to extend the debt limit to avoid economic calamity, we need to pass federal democracy and voting legislation to safeguard our democracy.”
Two Democrats — Senators Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia — have said they oppose Democrats’ push to abolish the filibuster, which critics call a relic of the Jim Crow era.

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