Why do we need a stinkin' U.S. Senate? It's just a bunch of pompous old windbags from the South, some of whom cannot even speak simple English!
Talking to you, Senator Mushmouth, aka Jefferson (for Davis not Thomas Jefferson) Beauregard Sessions III.
Senators Udall, Harken and Merkeley did give it the old college try:
For months, Udall has been promoting the "Constitutional Option," which would allow the senators to declare the first day of a new Congress a new Senate... a simple majority of senators to approve a new set of Senate rules without needing 67 votes to overcome a filibuster on rules reform. Udall had claimed repeatedly that he was going to call at the beginning of the new Senate for it to "exercise its constitutional right to adopt its rules of procedure by a simple majority vote."
.... instead of forcing a vote on the issue, Udall, Merkley and Harkin merely talked about it a few hours on the floor yesterday, and then gave up. Because they didn’t have 51 supporters, they decide to bend to the will of leadership....
Which is to say that ol' pussyfootin' Harry Reid cut a damned smoky back room deal with pompous old windbag Addison Mitchell McConnell Jr., aka bitchin' "Mitch" McConnell.
FireDogLake, my source above, has a bit of info on Senate reform:
The cursed filibuster:
These filibusters are the reason there was no budget passed this year, and why as many as 125 nominees to executive branch positions and 48 judicial nominations were never brought to a vote. They have produced public policy that we strongly opposed, most recently preserving the tax cuts for the rich, but even bipartisan measures like the food safety bill are routinely filibustered and delayed.
Udall sent me, and possibly a million other voters, an e-mail which claimed:
We forced an important discussion on rules reform, and there were important victories:
* We’ve finally put an end to "secret holds" so now senators must be on the record opposing bills and nominees. This will help restore some accountability to the chamber so that senators are no longer able to block bills and nominees without facing the consequences of doing so.
* We’re reducing the number of Executive branch nominees that require confirmation so the President can appoint the best and brightest to government and fill empty posts without unnecessary delay in the Senate;
* We neutralized an important obstructionist tactic — forcing bills and amendments to be read in their entirety on the Senate floor;
* And finally, we sent a clear message that unprecedented gridlock is unacceptable, culminating in an agreement between leadership to make the Senate more deliberative than obstructive.
OK. Fine. But what about the backlog of judges Obama nominated and all the unfilled judgships around the country?
Given the unsavory tone of the House in the 112th Congress, I'm talking to you, Darrell Edward Issa, the California congressman with the interesting history with stolen cars, factory fires and insurance policies purchased only days before claims were filed, and a military education in guns and explosives, not to mention the other kooks in the House, it might be a good idea to retain the filibuster.
Oh yeah, and keep the Senate, with its weak-kneed Democratic majority. They might even earn their keep this go-around.
But, my God! Oklahoma, Arizona, Kentucky, Georgia, South Carolina, Alabama! How come you keep electing those dimbulb doofuses to the U.S. Senate time after time after time?
A backlog of some 400 really decent house bills from the 111th that went nowhere on account of those senatorial schlags from the South. Given the tenor of the House in the 112th, it's a sure guarantee that most of the legislation that gets passed will be pure crap -- so let the pileup begin in the 112th Senate.
Last note: Please send us some Egyptians! Immediately! We need a little revolution here!
Next to the last footnote: And two dozen Tunisians, please!