Senators Getting Cold Feet on Changing Rules by Majority Vote

By: Monday December 10, 2012 3:01 pm

The one reason that a set of filibuster reforms that fall short of eliminating the 60-vote Senate may still allow for majoritarian democracy in that body is that it would set the precedent that the Senate can determine its rules with a majority vote rather than a 2/3 vote. The minority still obstructing consistently would [...]


Responding to Ezra Klein on the Constitutional Option

By: Thursday June 30, 2011 9:48 am

Klein believes that we shouldn’t open the can of worms of a Constitutional battle that would have to play out in the courts. He believes – and said yesterday that they debt limit negotiations have failed, but he oddly tempers that despair in arguing to let the process play out. This is a very reassuring take compared to… Ezra Klein yesterday.

Letting Another Crisis Go to Waste: Weak Agreement on Senate Rules Finalized

By: Thursday January 27, 2011 11:45 am

Make no mistake – the Senate, and all its members, are getting precisely what they deserve. Any future whining about how difficult it is to break a filibuster will go in one ear and out the other. They had their chance to fix this, and they punted. I don’t believe Republicans will be as generous.

Sen. Merkley Leads Drive Toward Senate Rules Reform

By: Saturday December 18, 2010 4:00 pm

Right now, the biggest date on the Senate calendar is January 5. Pressure will have to be put on the Democrats in Congress to change the rules and make the chamber more functional. As for what members need the most pressure, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) chuckled. “I’m sure in general that will become known.”

Hey, New York Times: Why Don’t You Tell the Senate to Just Pass the House Health Bill?

By: Friday February 26, 2010 4:33 pm

While it might be a “fact” that the House could pass the Senate bill unchanged, it is also a “fact” that the Senate could quickly pass the House bill unchanged. Maybe the reason the Senate is so dysfunctional is that major news organizations like the New York Times seem to ignore the simple facts about what the Senate can actually do, and, instead, lets senators get away with pretending there are no ways around their own made-up rules. The 60-vote threshold is not part of the Constitution, nor is it carved in stone. It can be changed. It should be changed.

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