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View Diary: This week at progressive state blogs: BART dispute, priest at the bully pulpit, abortion lies (27 comments)

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  •  Speaking of the states and the senate (0+ / 0-)

    The reason that the GOP has been able to abuse the filibuster to block bills and appointments that otherwise have majority senate (not to mention popular) approval is because of the inherently un-democratic nature of states and the senate, in which low population states such as WY or OK have the same number of senate seats and thus votes as large population states such as CA or NY. Otherwise, the whole scheme falls apart.

    Well, I just thought of a possible filibuster reform that would preserve the filibuster for when it's really needed, but end it when it's being abused. Instead of requiring a 60 vote threshold to end a filibuster, why not require a 60% of represented population threshold to end one?

    I.e. a total number of senate votes representing 60% of the entire population of the US would be all that's required to end a filibuster.

    I haven't done the math, but I'm guessing that this would mean that in at least some cases, Dems would only need 50-55 votes to break a filibuster, when you realize that they control most high population states such as CA, NY & IL (and split most others like FL & PA).

    Is there a way to run the numbers without having to do it manually? It would be pretty easy with a SQL query but I don't have access to any such DB. It probably wouldn't be that hard to put one together, since the population of each state is pretty static during any given congress, and senate votes are public information. You could even take into account how each state voted for their senators, to break it down by party ID (although that would be a poor way to reform the filibuster). I'll try to put one together for myself later.

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Sat Aug 10, 2013 at 09:13:02 AM PDT

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