CONGRESSMAN BISHOP VOTES TO ADVANCE CRUCIAL INFRASTRUCTURE AND VOTING RIGHTS BILLS
Aug 24, 2021
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02) voted in support of legislation to protect voting rights and advance important infrastructure investments in the United States House of Representatives. Among the measures that the House approved today are H.R. 4, the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2021, and S. Con. Res. 14, the budget resolution which was approved by the U.S. Senate this month and advances Democrats’ plan to Build Back Better and grow the economy through jobs, tax cuts, and lower costs for working families. The House also agreed to a path forward for the consideration of a bipartisan infrastructure package. Following the vote on the legislation to advance all three items, H.R. 4 was adopted by the House by a vote of 219-212. It now goes to the Senate for consideration.
About H.R. 4, Congressman Bishop said, “Recent decisions by the Supreme Court crippled the Voting Rights Act (VRA) of 1965’s ability to proactively protect against changes to election laws that would disenfranchise voters, including those who have been historically targeted by the type of voter suppression that gave rise to the Civil Rights Movement. Today, I proudly voted to adopt H.R. 4, the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act because it is a necessary response to the Supreme Court that updates the VRA’s preclearance procedure and makes it more effective in challenging existing, racially discriminatory laws.”
For decades, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 empowered the federal government to block certain states and localities with histories of discriminatory disenfranchisement from enacting restrictions on the right to vote. However, in its disastrous Shelby County v. Holder decision in 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court gutted the U.S. Department of Justice’s “preclearance” power under the VRA. In July 2021, the Court further weakened the law in its decision in Brnovich v. DNC, which made it more difficult for the federal government to challenge discriminatory voting laws.
With regard to the budget resolution, Congressman Bishop added, “The vote today is an important first step to Build Back Better by creating jobs, delivering tax cuts to hard-working American families, and lowering the costs of fundamental family needs including childcare, healthcare, and education. It does so by closing tax loopholes and clamping down on corporate tax dodgers.”
Today’s vote on the budget resolution instructs U.S. House committees to set spending, revenues, deficits, or the debt limit by specific amounts. Each committee writes a bill to achieve its target and a committee may choose to increase costs in some areas as well as reduce costs in others, so long as the net budgetary effect of a committee’s proposals complies with its instruction. The Budget Committee will combine the other committees’ bills into a single bill, the Build Back Better Act.
Among its highlights, the Build Back Better Act will:
Invest in research and development to strengthen American manufacturing supply chains and bring jobs back home.
Connect American workers to good-paying jobs through workforce development and job training.
Expand Small Business access to credit, investments, and markets.
Invest in home care and home care workers on which seniors and families rely.
Provide seniors with hearing, vision, and dental coverage through Medicare
Cut the cost of prescription drugs for seniors by empowering Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices.
Establish universal Pre-K for 3- and 4-year-olds and a new childcare benefit for working families.
Continue the expanded Child Tax Credit, which cuts taxes for nearly all families with children.
Extend the expanded Earned Income Tax Credit so that more money stays in the pockets of workers.
Additionally, no one earning under $400,000 a year will pay more in taxes as part of the bill.