As the Democrats’ expansive elections and voting bill headed for all but certain rejection late Tuesday in a key Senate test vote, the White House insisted the fight for voting rights is “far from over.”
Watch the briefing in the video player above.
Speaking to reporters at the White House briefing, press secretary Jen Psaki said for President Joe Biden, this issue “will be a fight of his presidency, long past today,” adding that he will use “every lever in government to continue to advocate for moving forward.”
The far-reaching proposal is viewed by backers as the civil rights issue of the era, legislation of the highest priority after the 2020 election as states impose restrictive new laws that could make it more difficult to vote.
In the evenly split Senate, Republicans are united in opposition, seeing the bill as federal overreach and denying Democrats the 60 votes that would be needed to overcome the filibuster and begin debate.
Psaki also defended the White House amid its failure to meet its own goal of getting 70 percent of the American public vaccinated by the July 4th holiday.
She said the administration “set a bold, ambitious goal,” and will meet it among the 30 and older population.
“There is no playbook for this,” Psaki said. “The president’s view is we should set bold, ambitious goals and do everything we possibly can to achieve them.”
But Psaki said the White House is also “honest about where we need to continue to redouble our efforts, and that’s among people who are 18 to 26.”
“That is a small, relatively small demographic of the country, but one where there needs to be continued work. And we’re going to use every tool at our disposal to push for that,” she said.