Wed, Jan 12, 2022 3:31 PM
By Casey Harper | The Center Square, The Center Square
(The Center Square) – Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell gave a sharp rebuke of President Joe Biden from the Senate floor Wednesday, calling the Commander in Chief’s latest speech “profoundly unpresidential.”
“The President repeatedly invoked the January 6th riot while himself using irresponsible, delegitimizing rhetoric that undermines our democracy,” McConnell said, referring to Biden’s speech Tuesday where he called for a string of new federal voting measures. “The sitting President of the United States of America compared American states to ‘totalitarian states.’”
McConnell’s remarks come after Biden delivered a blistering speech in Atlanta Tuesday where he accused Republicans of racism, opposing Democracy, and wanting “chaos to reign” while advocating for Democrats’ proposed federalization of voting laws.
The debate comes after Republicans passed election integrity laws around the country to help prevent instances of voter fraud, requiring things like added security for drop-off locations, ID requirements for absentee ballots, and standardized voting procedures across counties.
“[Biden] used the phrase ‘Jim Crow 2.0’ to demagogue a law that makes the franchise more accessible than in his own state of Delaware,” McConnell said. “He blasted Georgia’s procedures regarding local elections officials while pushing national legislation with almost identical language on that issue.
“The President implied things like widely-popular voter I.D. laws are ‘totalitarian’ on the same day Washington D.C.’s Democratic mayor told citizens to bring both a photo I.D. and a vaccine card anytime they leave their house,” he added.
In response to the Republican state legislatures' series of new voting laws, Democrats have dialed up attacks against Republicans and pushed for legislation that would allow a federal takeover of state elections.
“Your vote won’t matter,” Biden said Tuesday. “They’ll just decide what they want, and do it. That’s the kind of power they have in totalitarian states, not democracies.”
Republicans pushed back on Biden’s rhetoric, saying it flies in the face of his pledge to be a uniter of the country.
“Twelve months ago, this President called on Americans to ‘join forces, stop the shouting, and lower the temperature,’” McConnell said. “Yesterday, he shouted that if you disagree with him, you’re George Wallace. If you don’t pass the laws he wants, you’re Bull Connor. And if you oppose giving Democrats untrammeled one-party control of the country, well, you’re Jefferson Davis.”
In his speech Tuesday, Biden pushed for “getting rid of” the Senate filibuster if necessary to push through new voting laws. Critics pointed out this was a flipflop of many lead Democrats’ previous positions when they were not in control of the government.
"Joe Biden said eliminating the filibuster would 'throw the entire Congress into chaos,'" Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C. said after Biden’s speech. "Chuck Schumer said it would make the Senate a 'rubber stamp of dictatorship.'"