If you are one of the more than 211,000 members of the Daily Kos community who took action in the filibuster reform fight, here are four reasons why you should feel proud and excited today:
- Actual improvements to Senate rules are coming out of this. We didn't get the big ones we were looking for—the real talking filibuster and flipping the burden—but we are not coming away empty-handed. It's now going to be easier to confirm judicial nominees, harder to kill legislation just by wasting time, there will be fewer points in the legislative process for hostage taking, and secret holds are gone forever.
- We got Mitch McConnell to cave under duress. We got Mitch McConnell to agree to these changes because he was afraid that otherwise we would get even more. In other words, we got Senate Republicans to cave. That almost never happens on anything, but we just pulled it off. That is just hugely impressive.
- We helped trigger the construction of a huge new advocacy coalition. We only got #2 to happen because there are now two coalitions (see here and here) advocating for real filibuster reform. This is pretty amazing, given that back in 2010 the first "coalition" meeting on filibuster reform consisted entirely of myself, David Waldman, and Darcy Burner. In short, while it wasn't long ago that filibuster reform was just bathrobe-wearing, Cheetos-munching, DFH blogger silliness, now it's the mainstream center-left position.
- We are getting stronger. When we attempted filibuster reform two years ago, all we got was a "gentleman's agreement" between Reid and McConnell that accomplished exactly nothing. That's because two years ago we weren't powerful enough to scare McConnell into agreeing even to watered down reform. Now we are, and momentum is on our side.
The Daily Kos community played a foundational role in every step of this process. In the earliest days, we were the incubators of the idea that there should even be filibuster reform. Later on, we were instrumental in helping determine what specific reforms were needed, and also in bringing progressive groups together to push for these reforms. The rest of the way, as both a widely read blog and a grassroots activist community, we were essential in making sure filibuster reform was noticed by the public, the media and elected officials.
In short, we made change happen from scratch—how awesome is that? Further, every two years we will get another chance to build on these accomplishments, and the momentum for additional reform is unquestionably on our side.
I hope all 211,000 of you who took part in this fight feel excited and proud today, because in addition to being grateful to each and every one of you, that is exactly how I feel. Thank you, thank you, thank you!