In a cringeworthy video that appeared more suited for this Halloween season, South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott offered up a diatribe on why he and Republican colleagues unanimously rejected a federal voting rights bill that would protect minority voters.
“Proverbs 18:21 reminds us that death and life are in the power of the tongue, and each word we speak is a container of power,” Scott states in what some have described as an unapologetically racist video that the Republican masqueraded as sensible.
Scott denounces politicians he said have compared the racist voter suppression laws in GOP-led states to Jim Crow legislation.
“We should never pretend that where we are today is where we were 50 years ago,” Scott remarked. “This isn’t the Jim Crow South where you needed to know the number of jellybeans in a jar in order to vote.”
Scott, who plans to run for re-election next year, might find the video damaging if those voting in 2022 are among the masses who have rejected the senator’s message.
“Too many Black and Brown people voting might not be good for your rich donors,” Twitter user Robert King responded.
“Here’s a thought,” added Public Policy Analyst and Researcher Phil Frady. “How about we make it as difficult to purchase and own a firearm as we make it to cast one’s ballot?”
Retired U.S. Army and state of Alabama employee Jerome McReynolds called Scott “sad.”
“I could say more but just telling you that you are sad is enough,” McReynolds asserted.
The video and responses arrived after Senate Republicans again blocked a Democratic-led push for voter rights, with each of the 50 GOP members voting to block legislation that would help override some of the oppressive laws that have passed in several states due to the 2020 election.
Republican leadership chose Scott to negotiate with Democrats on federal legislation. But negotiations broke off after Scott falsely declared that the Democratic Party wanted to defund the police.
Democrats and tens of millions of voters have pointed to the lies about 2020 election fraud, the January 6 insurrection and ongoing misinformation as reasons to protect voter rights.
Republicans have passed laws and continue to restrict voting access to people of color and other minority groups. But GOP members maintain that the laws passed in Texas, Florida and Arizona are not suppressive and are meant to weed out election fraud.
“These [the Freedom to Vote and the John Lewis Voting Rights bills] are attempts by Democrats to have the federal government take over how elections are conducted all over America,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky quipped.
“The For the People Act [another voter protection law] would constitute a federal takeover of elections and it’s a massive power grab by Democrats,” an equally-minacious Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas offered.
President Joe Biden said he’s now open to ending the Senate filibuster to pass specific bills like voter protection and raising the federal debt limit to remedy the GOP-imposed voting rights issue.
“It’s a real possibility,” President Biden said during a nationally-televised town hall.
“We’re going to have to move to the point where we fundamentally alter the filibuster,” he said. .
The failure by the Senate to pass meaningful voter protection legislation counts as a dark day, the President declared.
“The right to vote and the rule of law are under unrelenting assault from Republican governors, attorneys general, secretaries of state and state legislators,” he continued. “And they’re following my predecessor, the last president, into a deep, deep black hole and abyss.”
Many Democrats and rights organizations have gone on record as proponents of ending the filibuster rule that requires 60 votes to pass most legislation.
“Black and Brown voters are tired of the same scene playing out over and over,” said The Rev. Dr. Stephany R. Spaulding, a spokeswoman for Just Democracy.
“We launch herculean mobilizations to get Democrats elected. Democrats bring legislation to the floor that would benefit communities of color and Republicans won’t even engage in a good-faith debate,” she said.