Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) suggested that Republican senators should “leave town” to deny a voting quorum on a Democrat-led reconciliation bill that could be voted on as early as next week, arguing that the GOP should draw from Texas state Democrats’ playbook.
Several days ago, Democrat Texas lawmakers left the state to deny the Republican-led Legislature quorum to protest against a voting overhaul bill, prompting Gov. Greg Abbott and Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan to call for their arrests or detainment. Several dozen Texas lawmakers arrived in Washington on July 12 after leaving on a private charter flight, while some later met with top Democrats including Vice President Kamala Harris.
“If for some reason they pass reconciliation, budget resolution to bring that bill to the floor of the United States Senate, the $3.5 trillion bill, you’ve got have a quorum to pass a bill in the Senate, I would leave before I would let that happen,” Graham told Fox News on Sunday. “So to my Republican colleagues, we may learn something from our Democratic friends in Texas when it comes to avoiding a $3.5 trillion tax and spend package. Leave town.”
When the Democrat House members left Texas, it meant the chamber wouldn’t have enough legislators in attendance to conduct business—known as a quorum—and means they could not vote on election bills or other legislation. Abbott called a special session after Democrats pulled a similar stunt during the waning hours of the previous legislative session on May 30, denying Republicans the ability to vote on the measure.
Republicans have argued the bill would safeguard future elections and restore confidence in the state’s voting systems, while Democrats have said the bill would suppress minority voters.
“Yeah, I would leave,” Graham also emphatically told Fox News on Sunday about how he would personally handle the reconciliation vote, which doesn’t require any Republicans and can bypass the 60-vote filibuster. “I would use everything in my toolbox. It’s got nothing to do with infrastructure,” he added. “It’s a tax-and-spend dream of the socialist left.”
Graham said that the reconciliation bill, reportedly worth about $3 trillion, would significantly increase inflation.
“If they put legalizing illegal immigrants in that bill, you’re going to have a complete run on the border,” he argued. “It will be throwing jet fuel on a fire called illegal immigration. It would lead to an invasion of illegal immigrants if we put amnesty in the $3.5 trillion bill so I would do anything I could to stop that.”
The Epoch Times has contacted Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) office for comment on Graham’s suggestion.
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