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McConnell blocks Paul's proposal on emergency remote voting

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBiden says Beau's assessment of first 100 days would be 'Be who you are' McConnell says he's 'great admirer' of Liz Cheney but mum on her removal McConnell: 'Good chance' of deal with Biden on infrastructure MORE (R-Ky.) on Tuesday blocked an attempt by Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulBuckingham Palace requests 'Trump Train' remove image of queen from bus The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Cheney poised to be ousted; Biden to host big meeting Overnight Health Care: Biden announces 1M have enrolled in special ObamaCare sign-up period | Rand Paul clashes with Fauci over coronavirus origins | Biden vows to get 'more aggressive' on lifestyle benefits of vaccines MORE (R-Ky.) to allow for temporary remote voting as the House prepares to take up its own proposal this week.

Paul, speaking from the Senate floor, argued that Congress should either return to session or allow for remote voting to be temporarily available during emergencies.

"If there exists too much danger to have Congress meet in person, we should allow emergency voting remotely," Paul said from the floor.

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But McConnell objected to Paul's attempt to pass his resolution, which would allow for any senator to try to get up to a 30-day temporary approval for remote voting.

"Senator Rand Paul offered an amendment to allow remote voting if necessary. He believes Congress should at once return into session, if not remote voting should be available during emergencies," said Sergio Gor, a spokesman for Paul.

McConnell and other members of GOP leadership have indicated that they remain opposed to remote voting. The Senate is currently in the middle of a five-week break sparked by the coronavirus, but before members left, the GOP leader shot down a question about allowing for senators to vote from outside the Capitol.

“We’ll not be doing that. There are a number of different ways to avoid getting too many people together,” McConnell told reporters

Instead, the GOP leader implemented social distancing techniques, including allowing for longer votes and encouraging members not to linger on the Senate floor. The effort was met with mixed success, as several senators were spotted standing shoulder to shoulder or chatting in tight groups.

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Paul's attempt to implement remote voting comes as Sens. Dick DurbinDick DurbinPolice reform talks hit familiar stumbling block Biden's internal polling touts public support for immigration reform The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Cheney poised to be ousted; Biden to host big meeting MORE (D-Ill.) and Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanHouse conservatives take aim at Schumer-led bipartisan China bill Strengthen CBP regulations to reduce opioid deaths House panel advances bipartisan retirement savings bill MORE (R-Ohio) have offered their own rules change resolution. Sens. Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntDemocratic Kansas City, Mo., mayor eyes Senate run Democrats, GOP agree on one thing: They're skeptical of a deal Senate panel deadlocks in vote on sweeping elections bill MORE (R-Mo.) and Amy KlobucharAmy Klobuchar Klobuchar offers tribute to her father, who died Wednesday The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Cheney poised to be ousted; Biden to host big meeting Senate panel deadlocks in vote on sweeping elections bill MORE (D-Minn.), the chairman and top Democrat on the Senate Rules Committee, are also working on a deal on remote hearings.

House Democratic leadership, meanwhile, has embraced the idea of voting by proxy.
The House is expected to vote this week on changing its rules to allow members to vote remotely during the coronavirus pandemic.

“The House is expected to vote on a rules change related to remote voting by proxy,” House Majority Leader Steny HoyerSteny Hamilton HoyerWhat's a party caucus chair worth? House fails to pass drug bill amid Jan. 6 tensions Cheney set to be face of anti-Trump GOP MORE’s (D-Md.) office said in a notice to members.