By MICHELLE STODDART, ABC News
(WASHINGTON) — Thursday is Day 44 of the administration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
Here is how the day is unfolding. All time Eastern:
Mar 04, 9:14 am
Biden praises House passage of voting rights bill
Biden released a statement Thursday morning praising the House for passing the “For the People Act,” which Democrats say would protect voting rights. Democrats have pushed for the bill as GOP-controlled legislatures in Georgia and other red states scramble to change voting laws after the 2020 presidential elections.
“In the wake of an unprecedented assault on our democracy; a coordinated attempt to ignore, undermine, and undo the will of the American people never before seen in our history; and a new wave of aggressive attacks on voting rights taking place in states across the country, I applaud Speaker Pelosi and the House of Representatives for passing H.R. 1, the For the People Act of 2021,” Biden said.
The would automatically register Americans to vote, restore the right to vote for felon and expand absentee and early voting. Biden, in the statement, also praised that the bill would curtail “outrageous gerrymandering” and the right for the Justice Department to crack down on racially motivated voting laws.
The bill is expected to hit a roadblock in the Senate, where Democrats will need to win the support of 10 Republicans to get the bill on to Biden’s desk. Still Biden stressed that he “look forward to signing it into law after it has passed through the legislative process, so that together we can strengthen and restore American democracy for the next election and all those to come.”
Mar 04, 8:58 am
Biden sets sights on infrastructure
Biden, Harris, and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg meet with bipartisan House members in the Oval Office this afternoon. As Biden gets ready for his final push for COVID-19 relief, he is setting his sights on his next big legislative goal: infrastructure.
But tackling that will be no small feat for Biden. Infrastructure was something former President Donald Trump wanted to tackle, even pitching a $1.5 trillion plan, but was never able to achieve. The American Society of Civil Engineers released the 2021 Infrastructure Report Card this week, published every four years, and gave American infrastructure a C- grade for the first time in 20 years. That’s up from a D+ in 2017.
After that meeting, the president will participate in a virtual call to congratulate the NASA Perseverance team on the successful Mars landing. White House press secretary Jen Psaki will hold a press briefing at 12:45 p.m., and will be joined by Secretary of Veterans Affairs Denis McDonough.
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