Twice-failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said Thursday that the U.S. has a “once-in-a-generation opportunity” in H.R. 1, a bill reshaping election rules which the House passed late Wednesday evening.
“My friend John Lewis said, ‘The vote is precious. It is almost sacred. It is the most powerful nonviolent tool we have in a democratic society.’ We now have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to protect it,” Clinton said, calling on the Senate to pass the For the People Act:
My friend John Lewis said, "The vote is precious. It is almost sacred. It is the most powerful nonviolent tool we have in a democratic society."
We now have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to protect it.
The Senate must pass the For The People Act.https://t.co/IYMtWXUHhX
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) March 4, 2021
Clinton’s comments follow the House passing H.R. 1 along party lines Wednesday evening. While Democrats, such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), brand the measure as a means to remove “obstacles of participation,” Republicans warn that the proposal’s mandates are largely unconstitutional, resulting in what would amount to a federal takeover of U.S. elections.
In a letter addressed to House and Senate leadership, 20 state attorneys general appealed to the Constitution’s Article I Elections Clause and Article II Electors Clause, “which [give] states the primary role in conducting federal elections for House and Senate, and an even bigger role in presidential elections.”
“The Act would invert that constitutional structure, commandeer state resources, confuse and muddle elections procedures, and erode faith in our elections and systems of governance,” they wrote in the letter, listing the measure’s many “vulnerabilities” and vowing to take appropriate legal action in the event the bill becomes law.
“Despite recent calls for political unity, the Act takes a one-sided approach to governing and usurps states’ authority over elections,” the March 3 letter continued. “With confidence in elections at a record low, the country’s focus should be on building trust in the electoral process.”
“Around the nation, the 2020 general elections generated mass confusion and distrust—problems that the Act would only exacerbate,” they wrote.
“Should the Act become law, we will seek legal remedies to protect the Constitution, the sovereignty of all states, our elections, and the rights of our citizens,” they vowed.
Pelosi praised the lower chamber for passing the bill on Thursday, describing it as a “giant step for democracy.”