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View Diary: Are we losing 'flipping the burden' now, too? Then change the quorum rules. (77 comments)

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  •  Does Reid Have the Votes? (1+ / 0-)
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    hawkseye

    Remember, Reid's purpose in trying to do a negotiated deal is to avoid having to use the "Constitutional Option" (ending debate on the new rules at the beginning of the new Congress by 51 votes, for those needing a simple definition).  That means he will need 66 votes to cut off debate for a rules change in order make these changes under the "rules".  So where does he get all those votes?

    First, lets make the unlikely assumption that all 45 Republicans will vote for these changes.  I am basing this assumption on the fact that Republicans will see that they either vote for these moderate changes or they will face a tougher set of filibuster rules being passed by Dems. alone under the Constitutional Option.  Still, I would agree that all 45 voting yes is unlikely since some of the far right will scream majority tyranny and vote against any changes.  However, lets assume 45 Republican votes as a "worst-case" assumption.

    Now Reid still needs 21 Dem. votes to reach 66.  Where does he get them?

    So far I have heard at most 4 Dem. Senators seeking a negotiated deal.  However, even Carl Levin who is in this group said he could support the 41 vote requirement to shift the filibuster burden to the minority.  But lets assume that all 4 back Reid. So we have 5 votes counting Reid.  He still needs 16 votes.

    This is where things get blurry.  While there may be somewhere between 45 & 51 Dem. votes for the talking filibuster, its clear that there are 51 Dem. votes for the 41 vote rule which Reid is "reportedly" considering tossing overboard.  But how many of the 51 are hard corp supporters of the tougher rule(s) (i.e., squarely in the Merkley-Udall camp), and how many would simply vote for it/them if it/they came up for a vote?  I'm not sure?  But, by my math, if Merkley-Udall have at least 30 hard corp supporters for the 41 vote rule and nothing less, Reid will not have enough votes to pass a watered-down set of new rules.

    My gut is Reid will have a tough time rounding up 66 votes.

    "Some men see things as they are and ask, 'Why?' I dream of things that never were and ask, 'Why not?"

    by Doctor Who on Thu Jan 24, 2013 at 06:28:47 AM PST

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