Democrats botch filibuster reform

  • Article by: Ezra Klein , Washington Post
  • Updated: January 25, 2013 - 6:39 AM

Because of the Senate majority leader, the filibuster will not be reformed. But the way the Senate moves to consider new legislation and most nominees will be.

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pumiceJan. 25, 13 7:25 AM

From the article: "But for now, Republicans have little to fear. The filibuster is safe. Even filibusters against the motion to proceed are safe." And Senators are safe from debating on the floor of the Chamber. No need to present or defend one's position on an issue. No need to persuade one's colleagues--by the force of one's principles and rationale--to support that position.

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my4centsJan. 25, 13 8:03 AM

The Senate should NEVER rush a bill through. Reid complains about not being able to get to a vote on a bill for possibly a week - and that should be the minimum amount of time for a bill to move. We are not lacking for debate on the Senate floor - we are lacking for debate, period. Any bill that is proposed should be published and circulated for all to see, with ample time for thought and proposed changes, before any votes are taken.

As to the filibuster itself - we should adopt similar majorities needed before bills are allowed to move ahead in the House. A simple majority rule allows for far too many whimsical and harmful changes.

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1986Jan. 25, 1310:03 AM

Poor Harry Reid those bad Republicans won't let him move bills through the senate. Not mentioned is that his senate has not passed a budget in four years. I guess it would be a little inconvenient if his party had defend their obscene spending that buys elections and is bankrupting the country on the senate floor.

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gandalf48Jan. 25, 1310:38 AM

Well it only takes 51 votes to propose a budget...Biden is the tie breaker...no more excuses Democrats, just pass a budget already.

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jimjimjimjimJan. 25, 1310:44 AM

How quickly we forget that Reid tried to change the filibuster rule when Bush was president so that democrats could use it to their advantage. Now he wants to change the rules again so that it can't be used against them. Liberals have a short and selective memory.

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jimjimjimjimJan. 25, 1310:45 AM

perhaps if the democrats learned the art of negotiation and were willing to compromise rather than attempting to ramrod legislation through we would not need to filibuster as frequently.

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crystalbayJan. 25, 1311:09 AM

The GOP has abused the filibuster 360 times in Obama's first term. This is an obscene bastardization of a tactic to such an extreme never seen before in our history. Historically, the filibuster has only been used to stall or prevent debate (much less a vote) on significant legislation, but the GOP has used it for virtually everything, even minor nominations or bills, as a way to protest and defeat practically anything the Dems have proposed. Their abuse of the filibuster is outrageous and has made governing nearly impossible. I'm extremely disappointed with Reid for giving up, even if he didn't have the votes.

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muggsh2oJan. 25, 1311:10 AM

It was obvious Reid wasn't going to do any reform. First, he's completely against any kind of reform. He has shelved every piece of House legislation that has come to him. Reid has been the biggest obstructionist in the history of Congress. Second - he knows it would come back to haunt the Dems when they lost the majority (probably 2016) so even though the reform is needed, the odds are the Democrats are going to need the ability to filibuster just the way it is in 2016. Hope and Change in 2016. Forward!

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jimjimjimjimJan. 25, 1311:53 AM

crystalbay - Isn't it frustrating when the GOP uses liberal tactics against the guys that perfected the art of the filibuster?

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twspt7Jan. 25, 1312:05 PM

Once again, the Strib "moderator" will only post tea party drivel, and anyone who takes them to task on it does not post - crystalbay being the token opposing viewpoint. One wonders just what exactly you folks are afraid of?

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