Lindsey Graham Threatens to Block LGBTQ Civil Rights Bill by Talking ‘Until I Fall Over’
Senate Republicans are doing a great deal of panicking over the For The People Act (HR 1), a measure that seeks to expand voting rights, limit gerrymandering (a favorite hobby of some Republicans), lessen the influence of money in politics. One such panicky Republican is South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham. But that’s not the only thing he’s worried about now that Democrats are trying to implement the “talking filibuster,” and on Sean Hannity’s program Wednesday, he said he intends to make full use of the said filibuster to prevent HR 1 from moving forward, according to The Hill.
But Graham is just being a typical Republican here. They are allergic to any positive social justice reform. Of course, he has a warning for President Joe Biden.
“Here’s what Biden needs to understand: If you go to the talking filibuster, we will take to the floor to stop HR 1,” he told Hannity.
The previous night Biden endorsed the idea of bringing back the filibuster, where lawmakers are required to talk nonstop on the floor without a bathroom break. Democrats are striving for filibuster reform as a 50-50 split in the Senate offers a precipitous path for numerous progressive priorities.
“You’ve got to work for the filibuster,” Biden said during an interview with ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos. “It is almost getting to the point where democracy is having a hard time functioning.”
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But Graham has turned a deaf ear to this and said he’ll talk as long as he has to in order to prevent the passing of HR 1, he said because he believes it would “destroy the Senate as we know it.” At one point he also told Hannity he didn’t think HR 1 would pass in an equally divided Senate.
Not content with that idea, Graham also attacked the Equality Act (HR 5).
“I would talk ’til I fell over to make sure we don’t go to ballot harvesting and voting by mail to make sure that the Equality Act doesn’t become law, destroying the difference between a man and a woman in our law.”
HR 5 prohibits discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity, providing anti-discrimination for LGBTQ+ people in several key areas, including employment, housing, credit, education, public spaces and services, federally funded programs, and jury duty, according to the Human Rights Campaign.
It’s anyone’s guess as to why Graham is against something like this but the senator has long been a foe of rights for the LGBTQ+ community and said Republicans could simply refute such legislation by not showing up, MetroWeekly reports.
“With a 50-50 Senate you can’t do anything without unanimous consent that matters,” Graham said. “To have a quorum, you’ve got to have 51 people present and the Vice President doesn’t count.”
“So if they did this, we could really shut down the entire Senate because we just won’t show up.”
Some Democrats, quite understandably, are trying to do away with the filibuster entirely, but that’s something that would require all 50 Senate Democrats in agreement with this. So far, two Democrats (who are really Republicans in disguise), Sen. Joe Manchin (W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (Ariz.) have said they are against the idea.
Watch the video below to find out more.