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View Diary: Harry Reid working on plan to reform filibuster (125 comments)

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  •  Yea, but why now? (1+ / 0-)
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    They've had two years to reform the filibuster so that they could push a progressive agenda.  Now that the House is Republican and they'll be looking to cut Social they reform?  I think this is an end run around the Democrats who would block the decimation of social security.  I don't think there's any other way to look at it.

    •  Suspicious (1+ / 0-)
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      I am suspicious of the timing of this reform proposal and suspect that the GOP would only agree to change the filibuster in anticipation of controlling the Senate.  They will control the House in the next Congress, so they would not be risking much in agreeing to change the filibuster rules.

      •  They don't have to agree. On the first day of (1+ / 0-)
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        wilderness voice

        a particular Congress meets, the Senate can vote on its own rules, and it's a simple majority vote. If the Democrats are united, they can change the rules for the filibuster without a single Republican agreeing to the change.

        If they don't act on that day, then they'd have to wait two more years, because IIRC, a "Congress" (as in the 101st Congress) lasts two years (marked by the electoral term of the Representatives).

    •  It has to be done at the beginning of the session (4+ / 0-)

      They should've killed it in Jan. 2009. Once the rules were set, I believe they have to stick to them for 2 years.

    •  No, they can only do this at the beginning... (4+ / 0-)

      of a new session.

      At the beginning of a new Congress, the Senate adopts the rules, by simple majority vote, as its first order of business.  Any effort to change them during the ongoing session requires 60 votes.

      Art is the handmaid of human good.

      by joe from Lowell on Thu Dec 23, 2010 at 01:14:11 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Minor correction (1+ / 0-)
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        wilderness voice

        The rules can be changed by simple majority.  But rule changes are subject to a filibuster.  This means you need 60 votes to actually change the rules.

        The first vote of the Seanate is a simple majority vote because there are no rules in place, therefore the filibuster doesn't exist.

        My I find the strength to do the things I already know need to be done.

        by Edge PA on Thu Dec 23, 2010 at 01:46:18 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Yoiu can only change the fillibuster rule on the (1+ / 0-)
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      wilderness voice

      first day of the new Congress. Dems would have had to change the rule on Jan 3, 2009. At that point in time, I don't think anyone thought the GOPers would be as pissy as they were to work with.

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