Klobuchar: Legislation needed to combat voter suppression

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Sen. Amy Klobuchar said Sunday that new voting rights legislation introduced last week was necessary to combat the “surgical precision” with which Republican state legislators have been working to suppress the vote.

“You cannot have these states basically deciding who their voters are,” the Minnesota Democrat said on MSNBC’s “The Sunday Show.“ “If they had trouble in the last election, if they lost the presidency, then change your policies, change your candidates, change your messages. Do not try to change your voters. That is against the fundamental right to vote.”

Referring to a voting rights court case in which the judges said the legislation discriminated “with surgical precision,” she said: “That's what happened in Georgia. That's what happens in Texas.”

Klobuchar and other Senate Democrats unveiled legislation Tuesday called the Freedom to Vote Act. The legislation, designed to replace more expansive voting rights bills that have stalled, includes measures meant to increase early voting and make it easier to register to vote, among other things. It was designed to possibly attract Republican support, though Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and others have already spoken against it.

Speaking to host Jonathan Capehart, Klobuchar said it was obvious to her that Republicans in a number of states around the country want to reduce the turnout among minorities and lower-income voters.

“When you take away weekend voting,“ she said, “what do you think that's about? When you say people who are standing in line are not allowed to get water and food when they're standing in line for hours in the sun, from nonpartisan volunteers. Oftentimes, as we know, it is low-income areas. It is places where it's harder for people to vote. “

She added, referencing Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.): “In the words of Rev. Warnock, some people don't want some people to vote.”

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