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View Diary: Senate Rs mad that Senate Ds might pass filibuster reform they agree with (98 comments)

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    •  This Proposed "Reform" is Just Worthless! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fiona West

      NOTHING short of ending the filibuster once and for all will work! This proposed "reform" accomplishes NOTHING!

      History Lesson: From 1946-1965 Southern Democrats filibustered EVERY Civil Rights measure brought forward and NOTHING passed the Senate that wasn't approved by racist Southern Democrats.

      Liberals (including Northern Republicans) backing integration tried repeatedly without success to break the filibuster.

      In those days Senators had to talk on the floor to filibuster, just like under this proposed "reform".

      But, GA Sen. Richard Russell divided the racists into teams of 2. Each senator would talk for 3 or 4 hours in a shift and then recognize his colleague who would blather for another 3 or 4 hours -- until the next shift came on.

      It was the LIBERALS who were worn out, because they had to be on duty, sleep in their offices and never leave the Capitol Building -- ready to invoke cloture and cut off debate at any time.

      The filibusterers were perfectly rested, because all they had to do under Senate rules is be "on duty" 1 out of every 4 days and talk for a few hours. The rest of the time they were at home in their states!

      Every filibuster until 1965 succeeded when the Liberals gave up and were worn out! In 1965, northern Senate REPUBLICANS finally joined with Liberal Democrats to defeat the filibuster. REPUBLICANS actually cast the decisive Civil Rights votes!

      The IDIOTIC notion that it's going to be one lone Senator filibustering like Mr. Smith goes to Washington is what seems to be behind this proposed "reform." It's going to be 45 of them! And they won't have ANY TROUBLE AT ALL BLOCKING EVERYTHING!

      Moronic! All this will accomplish is take the Senate BACK to the way things were in the 1940s-1960s!

      Republicans are RIGHT! They WILL have no trouble standing up in shifts all night and talking, if that's what it takes!

      •  But you're missing the larger picture (7+ / 0-)

        Those Senators were willing to do this about one issue. With the current state of affairs the Senate effectively blocks efforts on multiple fronts. Everything from tax policy to appointing federal judges is held up by their silent filibusters. Yes, the old filibuster was a horrible thing, but I can't believe the current crop of assholes could muster talking filibusters for a 100 or more federal judges. Do you? That's the real problem with the current system, it's so fucking easy and politically painless they do it constantly.

        To me progress is not so much a goal as it is a process and I believe it will not follow a straight course. Remember, the drops of water that form the river may not take the shortest path but they will still reach the ocean.

        by ontheleftcoast on Mon Nov 26, 2012 at 03:09:32 PM PST

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        •  Why not? Their goal isn't to do the government's (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          isabelle hayes

          business, but to keep Democrats from being able to carry out their agenda, whatever the voters may have decided.

          Or if they don't filibuster 100 federal judges, but still filibuster anyone Obama proposes for the Supreme Court, a few other key judges and appointments, and major laws -- is that okay?

          No.

          THis "reform" is way too weak.

          If, as it seems, some Democrats (like Reid) are unwilling to completely do away with this "Senate tradition," then at the very least limit the number of filibusters either party can engage in to a very low number per Congressional session (2 years).  Perhaps 2 or 3.  And make them talk.

          The filibuster used to be an extraordinary, rarely used tactic.  REform is worthless unless it restores the filibuster to that status again, and keeps it there.

          Better yet, the length of a filibuster should be limited as well.  Give it a week.  Make it another delaying tactic, useful only a few times a session.  Theoretically, it would give the minority a way of calling attention to an issue they feel strongly about, time to get their objections out to the public and let the public reaction be heard.  That's all the minority can legitimately expect.  The Senate is supposed to be run by majority rule.

          --------------------- “These are troubling times. Corporation are treated like people. People are treated like things. …And if we ever needed to vote, we sure do need to vote now.” -- Rev. Dr. William J. Barber

          by Fiona West on Mon Nov 26, 2012 at 05:03:25 PM PST

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          •  Limiting it to 2 or 3 effectively eliminates it (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            dzog, rainmanjr, isabelle hayes

            Because the majority party would just introduce 3 or 4 separate bills about essentially the same thing and eventually get their way.

            I prefer the proposal that requires rising numbers of senators opposing cloture to actually be on the floor when it is invoked. That would take care of the problem of 2 senators at a time obstructing everything.

            But in reality, changing the filibuster from invisible to highly visible is a great improvement. Many republican senators do not have the luxury of gerrymandered districts that their house colleagues have, and putting the crazy obstruction on display would be a problem for them.

            •  I don't trust the power of visibility to control (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              isabelle hayes

              Republican obstruction, and I dread seeing the Dems waste their one chance at filibuster reform, and thereby gamble the effectiveness of this second term, which is crucial in certain ways (in dealing with climate change, for instance; we have a limited window to make basic infrastructure changes in time).

              But the idea of requiring Senators who oppose cloture to be on the floor when it's invoked -- that has real potential.

              --------------------- “These are troubling times. Corporation are treated like people. People are treated like things. …And if we ever needed to vote, we sure do need to vote now.” -- Rev. Dr. William J. Barber

              by Fiona West on Tue Nov 27, 2012 at 09:49:17 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

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