So far, however, no important address or trip has materialized. Instead, Biden brought in outside advocates for White House meetings and consulted advisers on the best strategy to fight the new restrictive laws.
At the same time, pressure mounted on the White House and Democrats to do more to protect voting rights after a Supreme Court ruling limited the ability of minorities to challenge state laws. which they consider discriminatory under the Voting Rights Act.
âOur constitutional rights are at stake because state legislatures have imposed a wave of anti-election laws based on the same repeatedly refuted lies that led to an attack on our nation’s Capitol and one of the days the darkest in the history of American democracy, “said a White House official.
The official added that Biden is “absolutely outraged by these attempts to undermine the constitutional rights of Americans, especially people of color.”
Groups Biden plans to join on Thursday include the NAACP, the National Coalition for Black Civic Participation, the National Urban League, the National Action Network, the NCNW, the Leadership Conference for Civil & Human Rights, and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.
Harris will announce the expansion of the Democratic National Committee’s “I will vote” campaign with an event in the Washington area, according to a committee official. She will focus her remarks on why the entire Democratic Party must fight against voter suppression, the DNC official said. She will also be named honorary president of the âI Will Voteâ program of the DNC.
Biden said his efforts must go beyond simply limiting black money in politics or making Election Day a federal holiday – two things included in the major bill blocked by Republicans last month. He said in June that Democratic efforts must expand to limit the ability of election commissions to reject results or replace officials on the basis of ideology.
“It’s about who can judge whether your vote counted after being cast,” he said at the time, saying Republican polling stations were trying to reject votes if they didn’t like it. not the results. “It’s never happened before. It’s wrong.”
He answered questions on June 24 following the defeat of the Congressional Voting and Elections Bill. Biden said in his response that he would “tour the country” to “advocate” for advancement of voting rights. His press secretary later said he would speak more about the matter the following week.
“I don’t have any specific visits to announce yet, but it’s going to be a struggle of his presidency,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said. “He thinks that voting is a fundamental right for the American people. He will use every lever at his disposal to defend this. You will hear more about this next week as well.”
Last week, however, Biden’s schedule did not include a public voting rights event. Officials said scheduling conflicts – including a trip to visit families affected by the Florida condominium collapse – prevented him from making the formal remarks he had planned.
Instead, he met behind closed doors with his senior advisers and key experts to discuss “the anti-election legislation that has been proposed or recently passed by state legislatures, the legislation pending before Congress, and the measures. recent actions by the Department of Justice to protect the right to vote. “
“We are constantly working with leading outside groups and the private sector on what we can do together,” the official said, noting that the administration is also committed to Capitol Hill with Democratic leadership and “a variety of members. “.
The White House said at the meeting, Biden highlighted ways his administration would “step up engagement with the American people on voting rights.”
Speaking after meeting with families in Florida, Biden again said he anticipates a major push on voting rights.
âI think it’s essential that we make a distinction between removing and suspending voters. The ability of a state legislature to come forward and vote to change who is declared the winner, I find somewhat amazing, âhe said. “I will have a lot more to say about this because I plan to speak at length about voting rights and to continue on the road on this issue.”
CNN’s Betsy Klein contributed to this report.