Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday denounced new voter rules as a form of “hatred” and advocated for legislation promoting voter rights at a reception in honor of Black History Month.
Biden expressed disappointment in the Supreme Court’s decision to gut a centerpiece of the Voting Rights Act last year, according to a pool report, and singled out new voting legislation in North Carolina, Alabama, and Texas as examples of where voters’ rights are in danger.
“These guys never go away. Hatred never, never goes away,” Biden said at the event at the Naval Observatory in Washington, D.C. “The zealotry of those who wish to limit the franchise cannot be smothered by reason.”
The vice president was optimistic that Congress would address the “malarkey” of overturning a key portion of the Voting Rights Act — the formula that identified which state and local governments with a history of racial discrimination were required to pre-clear changes to their voting laws.
“This fight has been too long, this fight has been too hard, to do anything other than win–not on the margins, but flat out win,” he said.
On the lighter side, Biden had a little fun during the event ribbing Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, a former NBA player.
“I told the president, next game, I’ve got him,” Biden said, according to the pool report. “I may be a white boy, but I can jump.”