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I said what, now? Was it intended to be a factual statement?
Why is it so galling to see stuff like this from Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ)?
Yet, today, Senator Reid has come to regard the same things he once championed as an inconvenience. And worse, he wants to allow a bare majority of senators to change the rules, rather than the two-thirds majority required by the Standing Rules of the Senate. In other words, he wants to break the rules to change the rules.

Allowing the Senate’s majority party of the day – Democrat or Republican – to write its own rules would mean it could control everything, rendering the minority powerless. Without the filibuster, as noted, senators could be totally shut out of the amendment process.

Because this:

Senate Republicans

This document, produced by the Senate Republican Policy Committee in 2005, went out under the name of then-chairman Jon Kyl. And now, just as Senate Republicans are putting up "Stop the Nuclear Option" web pages like this one, they are taking down and "disappearing" ones like ... the former link to the pro-constitutional option paper shown above.

But yes, you can still find it, thanks to the Wayback Machine.

Originally posted to David Waldman on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 11:08 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  So he's the second R-Senator to (0+ / 0-)

    McConnell?*

    *Execute a partisan flip-flop on the filibuster.

    •  I don't know where he fits into the order. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Simplify, schuylkill

      It's hard to tell.

      Here's Jeff Sessions, on May 23, 2005:

      After considerable effort and determination and commitment to principle, Senator Frist moved us into a position to execute the constitutional option, also referred to as the nuclear option. It has been utilized, as he demonstrated, many times by majority leaders in the past. It is not something that should be done lightly, but it is certainly an approved historical technique that has been used in this Senate.
      And again on May 24th:
      [T]he constitutional option is a valid power of the Senate majority.
      And Johnny Isakson on May 20, 2005:
      The rule of the Senate invoking cloture that requires 60 votes to bring up a simple majority vote is the application of a rule to supersede the constitutional dictate that this Senate vote up or down....
      And Lamar Alexander, on April 12, 2005:
      The argument that the Senate doesn't have the power to change this procedure would get thrown out of court in a summary judgement. From 1789 when the Senate first met and adopted its rules by majority vote, it has adopted its rules by majority vote as the Constitution provides.
      And March 9, 2005:
      I have no doubt that changing the Senate's cloture rule by a majority vote is clearly constitutional. Some have argued that the Senate's cloture rule, which allows just 41 of us to block up-or-down votes, carries over from one Congress to the next by rule V. But no less an authority than the distinguished Senator from West Virginia [Robert Byrd], when he was majority leader, argued very persuasively and with great common sense that this is not true.... So, very simply, the Constitution provides that 51 Senators can change the Senate rules to allow a majority to cut off debate on a President's nominee of an appellate court judge.... In the debates on the adoption of Rule XXII on the Senate floor in 1917, and later modifications in 1953 to 1959, and then 1960 to 1975, the debate and eventual compromises were driven by the threat of the constitutional option, which we are discussing today.
      And John Cornyn, on May 20, 2005:
      The record is clear: Senate tradition has always been majority vote, and the desire by some to alter those Senate rules has been roundly condemned by legal experts across the political spectrum.... To employ the Byrd option is not a radical move. It would merely be an act of restoration.... The constitutional power of a majority of the Senators to strengthen, improve, and reform Senate rules and procedures is expressly stated in the Constitution. it was unanimously endorsed by the U.S. Supreme Court, and it has been supported and exercised by the Senate on numerous occasions.... The Supreme Court has unanimously held in United States v. Ballin that, unless the Constitution expressly provides for a supermajority vote, the constitutional rule is majority vote.
      And May 17th:
      It is perfectly normal and traditional for a majority of Senators to vote on the rules and parliamentary precedents of this body. Senators have been doing that from the beginning of this great institution. There is nothing radical about Senators debating the need to confirm well-qualified judicial nominees, and there is nothing radical about a majority of Senators voting to establish Senate precedents and rules.
      Orrin Hatch, May 23, 2005:
      Just as the Constitution establishes a system of self-government for the Nation, it establishes a system of self-government for the Senate. Subject always to the Constitution itself, we choose for ourselves how we want to do business. It may not always be nice, neat, and orderly, but it is up to us to decide. One of the clichés that the judicial filibuster proponents dreamed up is the cry that any solution to this crises would require "breaking the rules to change the rules." Presumably, that catchy little phrase refers to the fact that invoking cloture on an amendment to the text of our written rules requires not just 60 votes but two-thirds of the Senators present and voting. This argument is, I suppose, intended to make people think our written rules are the only guide for how the Senate operates.
      And April 22nd:
      By what logic can the Senate of 1917 or 1949 or 1959 bind the Senate of 1975? As Senator Walsh of Montana said during the Senate debate in 1917 on the enactment of the original rule XXII: "A majority may adopt the rules in the first place. It is preposterous to assert that they may deny future majorities the right to change them."
      So... you tell me. Is Kyl the second? Third? Fourth? Twenty-fifth? What?
  •  The assertions in the 2005 memo (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Simplify

    were not meant to be factual assertions.

  •  The majority does write the rules. (0+ / 0-)

    That does not make the minority party powerless.

    Man, this entire thing is so dumb. This is beneath high school debate team-level stuff.

    Government and laws are the agreement we all make to secure everyone's freedom.

    by Simplify on Thu Dec 13, 2012 at 02:15:51 PM PST

  •  Isn't he gone in two weeks? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    suesue, Mother Mags, jomsc, Matt Z
    •  Yes, but he'll no doubt come back here to AZ (0+ / 0-)

      and pick up where he was before he entered Congress -- as a lobbyist for energy and extractive industries. But then, he did that during his decades in DC too, didn't he?

      stay together / learn the flowers / go light - Gary Snyder

      by Mother Mags on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 09:21:26 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Allow me to extend my middle finger across the (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RJDixon74135, suesue, jomsc, Matt Z

    aisle

    Slow thinkers - keep right

    by Dave the Wave on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 06:42:18 PM PST

  •  look. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    suesue

    It doesn't matter.  When the GOP is in the minority, they want to keep the filibuster, when they Dems are in the minority they too want to keep it.  They both flip when control goes the other way because well filibustering is powerful.

  •  Maybe so, Senator Kyle (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    suesue, jomsc
    Without the filibuster, as noted, senators could be totally shut out of the amendment process.
    But, with the fake filibuster we have now, ONE senantor easily can (and has) shut everybody else out of the entire process. We, the people, are fucking tired of that.

    Figure it out.

    “Social Security has nothing to do with balancing a budget or erasing or lowering the deficit.” -- Ronald Reagan, 1984 debate with Walter Mondale

    by RJDixon74135 on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 06:51:25 PM PST

  •  Ya know.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    suesue, jomsc

    Thankfully, we only have to listen to the esteemed Senator Kyl (cR-AZy) for just a little bit more.
    As of January 4th he will be but a jaded memory in the hallowed halls of the Senate.
    Buh bye Jon, it's been, ummmmm, well, it's been.  Enjoy retirement.

    I think, therefore I am........................... Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose....AKA Engine Nighthawk - don't even ask!

    by Lilyvt on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 06:54:54 PM PST

  •  Oh this is easily explained. (0+ / 0-)

    Back then he was in the majority and would have benefited from a curtailing of minority rights.  Now he is in the minority and minority rights are sacrosanct.

    Just your standard Republican hypocrisy.

    I'm living in an age that calls darkness light.

    by electricgrendel on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 06:59:28 PM PST

  •  Exactly - the Wayback Machine. (0+ / 0-)

    Me thinks the GOPoops don't quite know how the intertubes work.

    "The most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed." ~ Steven Biko

    by Marjmar on Sat Dec 15, 2012 at 07:38:55 PM PST

  •  Watching Them Squirm (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matt Z, weinerschnauzer

    As they are hoisted on their own petards.

  •  Let's see. HOW many Senate votes (0+ / 0-)

    Does it take to approve the rules at the beginning of a new session?  2/3 of the Senators?  So what happens when they CAN'T get 2/3 to approve the old rules?  Because its pretty clear, with the number of Democratic Senators pledged to support filibuster reform that there are not enough votes to reach the "required" 2/3 majority to approve the OLD rules.  So, what happens then?  Does the Senate operate with no rules at all?  Or does it not go into session at all because they can't agree on the rules?  

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