President Joe Biden is now giving a speech backing changes to Senate filibuster rules that have stalled voting rights legislation.
In the speech, Biden is discussing that it’s time to choose “democracy over autocracy”, according to reports.
However, the speech is being boycotted by some civil rights groups that are accusing the White House of inaction.
A White House official, previewing the speech on the condition of anonymity, said Biden would voice support for changing the Senate filibuster rules only to ensure the right to vote is defended.
Filibuster rules require 60 votes to advance most legislation, which is a threshold Senate Democrats can’t meet on their own with their thin Senate majority.
Republicans unanimously oppose the voting rights measures, and not all Democrats are fully on board with changing the filibuster.
Biden’s speech will come as he held steady in the latest approval rating polls, according to political data website FiveThirtyEight.
Read our Joe Biden speech live blog for the latest news and updates…
Biden flames voting suppression laws
“To them, too many people voting in a democracy is a problem,” said Biden.
“For example, voting by mail is a safe and convenient way to get more people to vote.”
“So they’re making it harder for you to vote by mail.”
Biden looks back on January 6
“But then, the violent mob of January 6, 2021, empowered and encouraged by the defeated former president sought to win through violence.”
“That’s why we are here today, to stand against the forces in America that value power over principle.”
Joe Biden speaking now
The Vice President has now introduced President Joe Biden.
“In our lives, there are moments so stark, that they divide all that came before, and everything that followed,” said Biden.
“Last week, President Harris and I stood in the United States Capitol, to observe. One of those before and after moments in American history.”
Biden Administration hopes to pass bills
Vice President Harris is calling on the Senate to act to pass two bills put forward to secure the freedom to vote.
“Years from now, our children and our grandchildren, they will ask us about this moment.”
“They will look back on this time and they will ask us not about how we felt.”
“They will ask us, what did we do?”
‘That is not how a democracy should work’
“Do not succumb to those who would dismiss this assault on voting rights as an unfounded threat,” said the Vice President.
“If we stand idly by, our entire nation will pay the price for generations to come.”
Vice President Harris speaks on anti-voter laws
“Over the past few years, we have seen so many anti-voter laws, that there is a danger of becoming accustomed to these laws.”
“Anti-voter laws are not new in our nation, but we must not be deceived into thinking they are normal.”
“There is nothing normal about a law that makes it illegal to pass out water or food to people standing in long voting lines.”
Vice President Harris speaking first
“Last week, one year after a violent mob breached the United States Capitol, the President of the United States and I spoke from it’s hallowed halls.”
Harris said her and the President plan to “fight to safeguard our democracy.”
Biden speaking now
Jillian Jackson, college student, introduced the President and Vice President.
They are now expected to back changes to Senate filibuster rules that have stalled voting rights legislation.
Who is Jill Biden?
The United States President’s wife, Jill Biden, is a teacher.
The 70-year-old first lady was born in Hammonton, NJ.
Today, she continues to teach English full-time at a community college in Virginia.
She married Joe Biden in 1977, and they share a daughter named Ashley, who was born in 1981.
When did Joe Biden become president?
President Joe Biden took office on January 20, 2021.
He is the 46th president to serve the United States.
Will Biden grant loan forgiveness?
President Biden publicly stated during his campaign that he supported up to $10,000 in forgiveness.
However, the government has not yet forgiven debt for most borrowers, and the president has not recently shared any plan for it.
Some Democrats in Congress are pushing for up to $50,000 of loan forgiveness for borrowers.
Joe Biden’s children
The President has four children:
Ashley Biden, Hunter Biden, late daughter Naomi Christina Biden, and his late son, Beau Biden.
Joe shares Ashley with his current wife and First Lady, Jill.
Did any of Biden’s children serve in the military?
Although Biden was not in the military, his late son Beau Biden was.
Beau joined the military in 2003 and rose up the ranks to become an army major in the JAG corps – the part of the army made up of officers who are also lawyers.
He was deployed to Iraq for a year between 2008-2009 and won a Bronze Star Medal for his service.
Beau’s brother Hunter Biden also served in the military.
He was part of the US Naval Reserve but was discharged after testing positive for cocaine in 2014.
Was Joe Biden in the military?
President Biden was not in the military and did not serve in war.
He received five student draft deferments due to medical exceptions during his time as an undergraduate at the University of Delaware, and at Syracuse University, where he studied Law.
During a physical assessment in April 1968, he was classified as I-Y, which meant he could only be drafted in the case of a national emergency.
During the Obama administration where Biden served as Vice President, a spokesperson said Biden didn’t serve as he was “disqualified from service because of asthma as a teenager.”
Protestors now at the White House
Protesters, who are currently outside the White House, are demanding that Biden close Guantanamo.
Sen Manchin on the filibuster
Sen Manchin said, “We need some good rule changes to make the place work better, but getting rid of the filibuster doesn’t make it work better.”
“What they know about the filibuster is basically what Bob Byrd has educated people on over the years and the filibuster is what makes the Senate hopefully work when it’s supposed to work,” Manchin said.
“We need some good rules changes and we can do that together. But you change the rules with two-thirds of the people that are present, so it’s Democrats, Republicans changing the rules to make the place work better getting rid of the filibuster does not make it work better.”
Is Jen Psaki leaving the White House?
The communications expert told CNN’s David Axelrod the Biden administration was made aware of this beforehand.
What did Biden say on January 6?
In one of his most recent speeches before his Atlanta remarks scheduled for Tuesday, Biden presented a speech in commemoration of the one year anniversary of the US Capitol riots on Thursday, January 6, 2022.
During his speech, Biden said: “I will not shrink from it either. I will stand in this breach. I will defend this nation.”
He continued: “I will allow no one to place a dagger at the throat of democracy.”
‘A turning point’
Ahead of his administration’s Atlanta college stops, President Biden’s team shared a prepared statement.
The statement read: “The next few days, when these bills come to a vote, will mark a turning point in this nation.”
“Will we choose democracy over autocracy, light over shadow, justice over injustice? I know where I stand,” Biden’s statement said.
The President is scheduled to speak in Georgia on Tuesday.
What is President Biden’s approval rating?
According to FiveThirtyEight, President Biden’s approval rating is holding fairly steady.
As of Tuesday, the site reported that, after compiling all polls, his approval rating sat at 43 percent.
His disapproval rating was listed at 51.6 percent on the site.
‘Defend the right to vote’
Before his speech on Tuesday, President Biden took to Twitter and shared another comment about voting rights.
“History has never been kind to those who have sided with voter suppression over voting rights,” he wrote.
“And it will not be kind to those who fail to defend the right to vote. Congress must debate and vote on the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.”
Will Kamala Harris appear?
CNN reported that both President Biden and Vice President Harris are scheduled to make remarks on voting rights this afternoon in Atlanta ahead of Martin Luther King Jr Day.
‘The road ahead’
Ahead of the speech on Tuesday, President Biden took to Twitter on Monday to talk about his upcoming remarks.
“January 6, 2021 made it clear: there is a dagger at the throat of our democracy,” Biden wrote.
“Tomorrow, I’m headed to Atlanta where I will discuss the road ahead in our fight for voting rights.”
A White House official, previewing the speech on the condition of anonymity, said Biden would voice support for changing the Senate filibuster rules only to ensure the right to vote is defended during his speech on Tuesday.
Where is Biden speaking?
President Biden will give the speech in Atlanta, Georgia.
He is set to visit Atlanta’s Ebenezer Baptist Church, where the late Rev Martin Luther King Jr used to preach, and will place a wreath at the crypt of King and his wife, Coretta Scott King.