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View Diary: Filibustered Senate Sequestration Replacement Bill Was a Beautiful Thing - RIP (74 comments)

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  •  the entire dynamic changes (2+ / 0-)
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    eXtina, elwior

    You're looking at it too statically.

    Now, the Republicans can pose however they want, and Boehner can blame the Senate for doing nothing, because everyone knows Reid will filibuster the Senate bill. Now, the sequester happens with only a minimum of token opposition that no one truly believes.

    Without Reid's filibuster, the Senate and the President agree not to harm the economy. It's purely the Republicans who would be demanding the US be punished.

    The longer Boehner's House held out, the more they would hurt their 2014 changes, pressuring the House to do something.

    With Reid's filibuster, the Republicans lose nothing politically, because the Senate Democrats join with the House in opposition. Both sites are blamed (correctly), and the Democrats are hurt for 2014, not the Republicans. In other words, no leverage on the House at all.

    •  I don't think it would have played out that way (1+ / 0-)
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      at all, frankly.

      The House has already -- twice -- passed bills that replaced the sequester with other cuts.  All they would have to do is take the Senate bill, amend it to take out the tax increases and to add in spending cuts this fiscal year, and pass that.  Speaker Boehner clearly has the votes now to pass what he passed twice last year.  The Senate bill would not get a single Republican vote, and the House bill would not get  single Democratic vote.

      And we'd be exactly where we are now -- the story would be that Republicans want to replace the sequester with other spending cuts starting immediately, and Democrats want to replace the sequester with tax increases now and spending cuts down the road (over the next 10 years).  

      Frankly, I think some people are reading too much into these details.  The vast majority of the public isn't going to look at those details, even if the Senate bill had not been filibustered and had passed with 51 votes.   Down the road, if/when people start to feel bad effects as a result of the filibuster, they are going to blame everybody -- the President and both parties in Congress.  And I think that everybody in Washington knows that, which is why the blame game is in high gear right now.    

      •  Frankly? (1+ / 0-)
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        "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

        by elwior on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 07:15:08 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  With Ferg (1+ / 0-)
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        Coffee--your points are logical but I think Ferg has it right. Using the majority threshold puts Reid in a much stronger negotiating position with Boehner. As it is now, Boehner knows that McConnell can effectively veto anything that Reid wants to do because of the filibuster--this makes Boehner even stronger. If Reid could bargain on equal footing, then Boehner has no choice but to negotiate in order to get something done. At some point, both sides have to agree on something. This is why McConnell is such a big force in any negotiation! See how irrelevant Pelosi is even though without her, Boenher can't get anything passed that the Senate and the President will sign off on. Without a filibuster-proof majority, McConnell is just as strong (in some ways stronger) as Reid because as long as his caucus holds together, nothing can pass without his approval despite the fact that Dems hold a 55 to 45 advantage. Last point, the Senate was never designed to require a super majority to pass bills. Because of the hyper obstruction by Repubs, they have created the perception that 60 votes are needed for everything. Reid could have changed this dynamic with filibuster reform. The Repubs won't be the least bit reluctant to change the rules once they get back in power. Senate Dems will have essentially wasted 8 years of being in the majority if Repubs take over the Senate in 2014. Should this happen, there is only one thing that would prevent Repubs from making a rule change---Joe Biden. Rule changes without a super majority require the Vice President's participation.

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