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President Joe Biden’s hopes of overhauling the US election system look doomed after two of his fellow Democrats came out against them. Mr Biden has been arguing for the hugely controversial step of scrapping a key Senate norm to pass the bills. But Senator Kyrsten Sinema said she refused to worsen the “disease of division infecting our country”. At the Capitol to arm-twist lawmakers, Mr Biden conceded he was “not sure” his plans would work. He wants to repeal the filibuster, which requires a 60% majority to pass certain legislation in the Senate. The upper chamber of Congress is currently split 50-50 between the two parties. No Republicans support the two Democratic-proposed plans, the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. Among other things, the bills would impose federal standards on elections, ushering in the most sweeping reform in a generation. On Thursday, Mr Biden went to Congress in a last-ditch effort to persuade lawmakers to remove the filibuster so he could get the legislation passed. But emerging from a meeting that lasted over an hour, he conceded that opposition from two key Democratic lawmakers had blocked his agenda.

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