Congress: Changing the filibuster rule come January has suddenly become a top priority for Senate Democrats who want to help their re-elected president complete his fundamental transformation of America.
Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on Monday blasted Democratic-led efforts to reform the filibuster, something the Democrats once vehemently opposed but which Majority Leader Harry Reid has promised to bring up in the next Congress, fearing the Republicans will dig in to block President Obama’s agenda.
What Reid and the Democrats will come up with is unknown at this point. Among the options is to ban filibusters that block the start of floor debates and House-Senate conference committees from convening.
One proposal would force senators to actually get up and talk endlessly in order to filibuster legislation, which senators were required to do until 1975, as depicted in the classic Jimmy Stewart film, “Mr. Smith Goes To Washington.”
Then there’s the so-called “nuclear option,” which would call for just a simple majority, or 51 votes, to change Senate rules. Changing the rules usually requires two-thirds of the chamber, or 67 votes. It’s something Reid vehemently opposed in 2005, when Senate Republicans ruled the roost.
When Obama, Reid, Biden and other Democrats Loved The Filibuster
When Democrats Opposed Changing The Filibuster
FLASHBACK–Reid:Effort to Curtail Filibuster ‘Is About the Arrogance of Power’