President Biden said he was “insulted” by a reporter’s question Tuesday wondering if he felt that way about Stacey Abrams skipping his speech on voting rights on her Georgia turf.
“Any thoughts on Stacey Abrams skipping your speech today, sir? Are you insulted she’s skipping your speech?” a reported asked at the White House ahead of Biden traveling to Atlanta.
“I’m insulted you asked the question,” Biden said before smiling. “I spoke to Stacey this morning. We have a great relationship. We got our scheduling mixed up. I talked to her at length this morning. We’re all on the same page, and everything’s fine.”
Abrams, who is running again for the Georgia governorship in 2022, has made voting issues a cornerstone of her political platform, so her decision to not attend the address due to a “scheduling conflict” raised some eyebrows.
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Skeptics like MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough guessed she was thinking about her political fortunes, due to Biden’s lagging poll numbers nationally and in Georgia.
“This is an event custom-made for Stacy Abrams, she obviously doesn’t want to be on the same stage as Joe Biden,” Scarborough said on “Morning Joe.”
Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris are pushing a sweeping federal election overhaul during their visit to Georgia, but it isn’t just Abrams who isn’t showing up. Some other progressive Georgia voting rights groups are also skipping the speech in protest, with one former NAACP president telling the New York Times that Democrats need more action and less talk.
“We don’t need any more photo ops. We need action, and that actually is in the form of the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, as well as the Freedom to Vote Act—and we need that immediately,” James Woodall said.
Biden supports a carve-out of the filibuster, which creates a 60-vote threshold to advance a bill for a vote, in order to pass voting bills. Some Senate Democrats are pushing to eliminate the filibuster entirely after previously opposing that “nuclear option” when they were in the minority.
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Biden will deliver his remarks on Tuesday from the Atlanta University Center Consortium, on the campus of Clark Atlanta University and Morehouse College. A preview of his remarks indicates he will cite last year’s Capitol riot in pushing Republicans to support the federal election laws, which conservatives have derided as an unconstitutional usurpation of states’ rights.
“I know where I stand. I will not yield. I will not flinch. I will defend your right to vote and our democracy against all enemies foreign and domestic,” Biden will say. ‘And so the question is where will the institution of United States Senate stand?”
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Fox News’ Brooke Singman contributed to this report.