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Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) (R) attend the unveiling ceremony of a statue of former U.S. President Gerald Ford in the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol in Washington May 3, 2011. REUTERS/Joshua Robe
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid came to the floor Thursday morning and made the case for changing the rules of the Senate to allow up or down votes on executive nominations, and to reiterate that the agreement made with Republicans in January had failed because Republicans broke their word.
"Senator McConnell committed to end the constant Republican obstruction and return the Senate to a time when nominations were processed more efficiently. Those were his commitments. Those were his promises. By any objective standard, they've been broken."
Reid made a strong case that the Republicans had turned the traditional role of the Senate from "advise and consent to deny and obstruct," showing that the Republicans continued obstruction was a refusal to "refuse to accept law of the land." "Instead," he said, "they're blocking qualified nominations to circumvent the legislative process, to force wholesale changes to laws or restructure entire agencies."

In response, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell came to the floor with crocodile tears and threats.

“Senate Democrats are gearing up today to make one of the most consequential changes to the United States Senate in the history of our nation. And I guarantee you, it is a decision that, if they actually go through with it, they will live to regret.

“It’s an open secret at this point that Big Labor and others on the Left are putting a lot of pressure on Senate Democrats to change the rules of the Senate – and to do so by breaking the rules.

“That would violate every protection of minority rights that have defined the United States Senate for as long as anyone can remember.

“Let me assure you: this Pandora’s Box, once opened, will be utilized again and again by future majorities – and it will make the meaningful consensus-building that has served our nation so well a relic of the past.

Then, getting really creepy, he invoked Reid's tombstone: "No majority leader wants written on his tombstone that he presided over the end of the Senate," McConnell said. "Well, if this majority leader caves to the fringes and lets this happen, I'm afraid that's exactly what they'll write."

The fight is on, and as of now still scheduled for next Tuesday when a number of President Obama's nominees will come to the floor for a vote, potentially an up or down vote.

Send an email to Harry Reid and your Democratic senators telling them to hang tough and to vote for real filibuster reform.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Thu Jul 11, 2013 at 08:22 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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