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View Diary: The clear way forward on filibuster reform: The constitutional option (105 comments)

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  •  What are those 41 Senators going to be (15+ / 0-)

    doing if they're not talking?  They'd have to be sitting in the Senate Chamber, so either they'll be milling around talking or someone will be standing and addressing the Senate.  OK, 3AM on a Saturday morning some may doze off, but I would hope the party trying to get business done would be disrupting the filibustering dreams.

    I like the idea of forcing 41 Senators to be present to show their obstinance and their dedication to obstruction.  I'll like it if/when Democrats are in the minority (though I will bet up to $100 that the Republicans will just do away with the filibuster entirely when they get the chance).

    •  I like it to (10+ / 0-)

      I was a little annoyed at first when it was proposed as an alternative to the talking filibuster, but the more I hear about it the more I like it. I'd still like to force them to talk, but the minority cloture requirement would still force them to be in the chamber to maintain the filibuster. Furthermore, it would retain the real value of a filibuster: it provides a mechanism by which the minority can block the majority if it tries to steamroll legislation.

      The problem has never been the existence of the filibuster. The problem is the ease with which a single individual Senator can bring the "greatest deliberating body in the history of the world" to a screaming halt.

      •  No, the existence of the filibuster is the problem (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TrueBlueDem, elwior, eps62

        Why should a minority be able to block a majority from passing legislation?  That's the opposite of how democratically elected legislative bodies are supposed to work - you know, majority rule, and all that.

        Every Senator represents his home state.  Period.  We have 50 states, and each state gets 2 Senators.  Thus, we have 100 Senators.  If 51 Senators agree that something should pass, it should pass.  You don't get extra super special filibuster powers just because you happen to be part of the losing side of an argument.  You lost.  You still have the same power as the other 99 Senators - no more, no less.  

        Remember that the Constitution was explicitly designed to quash factionalism and the kind of "minority party" rights that the filibuster represents.  The Founding Fathers didn't want minority parties gumming up government.  

        We ought to be abolishing the filibuster entirely.  That should be the threat behind every reform - agree to the reform, or we'll just abolish this undemocratic procedure that was abolished in the House ages ago.  

        •  I Disagree.....The Filibuster Can Be Useful If.... (6+ / 0-)

 is not abused.

          The filibuster, at it's best, could give any single Senator the ability to hit the red switch halting the sausage making assembly line.

          Obviously, the Republicans have MASSIVELY abused and corrupted the we now MUST reform it so that no one can simply/anonymously kill legislation.   The status quo is insanely stupid and undemocratic.

          If Reid submits to some kind of milquetoast "compromise" that gets Republican votes, he will have been had.

          We need robust filibuster reform now.  If the status quo remains in place....the Senate may as well just hang it up and go home as we'll just get four more years of the same bs and the public will continue to blame both parties.


          •  Why on Earth should 1 Senator (0+ / 0-)

            Be able to stop the business of 99 others?  

            Sure, the filibuster could be useful if it weren't abused.  And if men were angels, we wouldn't need any laws.  

            But in the world we live in, everything liberal is filibuster, and the PATRIOT act wasn't.  

        •  The major problem I've had is with the anonymous (9+ / 0-)

          holds and filibusters where we don't know which Senator is blocking things.  We can't pressure if we don't know and we can't hold them to account come election time if we don't know what slimy things they did while they were Senator.  More open-ness is a good thing.

    •  Now if we can get HD cameras added to C-SPAN2 (5+ / 0-)

      so we can have quality 3AM footage of those snoozing Senators, we've got the start of some solid polital ads.

      "While flooding/tornadoes/fires struck his home state, Senator Mcsleepy was asleep in the Senate."

      Filibuster reform now. No more Gentleman's agreements.

      by bear83 on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 10:37:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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