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Letter: Manchin sacrifices republic by seeking bipartisanship

Letter: Manchin sacrifices republic by seeking bipartisanship

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Civil rights leaders don't budge key senator on voting bill

Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, arrives for a hearing at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, June 8, 2021. Manchin, a crucial 50th vote for his party on President Joe Biden's proposals, said Sunday he would vote against federal voting rights legislation sponsored by his own party. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Regarding “Manchin’s opposition clouds future of Dems’ elections bill” (June 3): I just don’t understand Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin. He said, “Voting and election reform that is done in a partisan manner will all but ensure partisan divisions continue to deepen.” The partisan divisions are not caused or deepened by ensuring that all citizens are able to vote. The partisan divisions originate in the blatant obstructionism maliciously masterminded under the Republican leadership of Sen. Mitch McConnell. Giving a bully his due is not bipartisanship, it is capitulation.

Manchin assumes that partisan divisions are of paramount importance, even above the loss of democracy. Without a functioning democracy, partisan divisions do not amount to a tinker’s damn. Is it really more important that partisans come together on something or anything so watered down that it won’t stand up to the job that needs to be done in light of current voting rights assaults?

The sheer number of restrictive measures being enacted boggles the mind. First, defend democracy, then we can talk about true bipartisanship (not the wolf in sheep’s clothing that gerrymanders its way to election victories and simultaneously erects roadblocks to accessing the voting booth.)

I am frankly appalled that Manchin won’t support the For the People Act. It is not the lack of bipartisanship that risks “further dividing and destroying the republic we swore to protect and defend as elected officials,” as Manchin says. It’s turning a blind eye to the actual erosion of the republic inherent in the disenfranchisement of millions of potential voters.

Kathleen Delpha • St. Louis

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