Quote of the Day
They say that women talk too much. If you have worked in Congress you know that the filibuster was invented by men.
Clare Boothe Luce
They say women talk too much. If you have worked in Congress you know that the filibuster was invented by men.
Clare Boothe Luce
The power of the silent filibuster to distort Senate politics is now accepted on Capitol Hill and by the press as normal and not worth mentioning. Let me be the skunk at this political garden party and say this stinks. Representative government was not designed to work this way by the Founding Fathers.
In the first 50 years of the filibuster, it was used only 35 times. But the last Congress alone had 112 cloture motions filed, plus threats of more. This is the tyranny of the minority.
We demand that segregation be ended in every school district in the year 1963! We demand that we have effective civil rights legislation - no compromise, no filibuster - and that include public accommodations, decent housing, integrated education, FEPC and the right to vote.
No one likes the Electoral College, expect perhaps those who were elected because of it. No one likes gerrymandering, except those doing the gerrymandering. No one likes the filibuster, except those doing the filibustering.
Voter suppression laws, overzealous filibuster use, you name it - the Republicans use every tactic they can to stop our democracy from actually selecting the person with the most support.
To be honest, I haven't seen much serious budget planning since the Republicans took control of the House after the 2010 elections and grabbed onto the Senate filibuster. It's not the White House's fault that John Boehner couldn't deliver on a bigger deal.
There is no Senate rule governing the proper uses of the filibuster.
Filibusters have proliferated because under current rules just one or two determined senators can stop the Senate from functioning. Today, the mere threat of a filibuster is enough to stop a vote; senators are rarely asked to pull all-nighters like Jimmy Stewart in 'Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.'
There are two ways of looking at the talking filibuster. My way is as a form of unanimous consent.
You know, the purpose of reconciliation is to avoid the filibuster. The filibuster is an effort to talk something to death.
Healthy debate has been replaced by automatic sensors that eliminate the need for actual talking during a filibuster - a la 'Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.' Robust debate is necessary in a democratic society. Instead, our discourse has been relegated to media spin by expert entertainers.
It used to be in the Senate that if you were filibustering, you stood up. There was a physical dimension to it, that you - when you became exhausted you would have to leave the floor. That was the idea of the filibuster.
It seems as though there are Members in this body who want to filibuster just about everything we try to do, whether it is stopping judicial nominations, the Energy bill, or this Medicare bill.
President Barack Obama has it right - there is a lot to change about Washington. The problem is, not much will get changed unless we confront the runaway filibuster in the U.S. Senate.
We've seen filibusters of bills and nominations that ultimately passed with 90 or more votes. Why filibuster something that has that kind of support? Just to slow down the process and keep the Senate from working.
We've seen filibusters to block judicial nominations, jobs bills, political transparency, ending Big Oil subsidies - you name it, there's been a filibuster.
The House of Representatives eliminated the filibuster way back in the 19th century, and somehow it managed to survive.
During the Obama years, the Republicans have done an unprecedented amount of stonewalling on cabinet-and-below appointees. I would also argue that their war on judicial nominees has been way beyond what went before. Really, if the president nominated God to serve on the D.C. Court of Appeals, Mitch McConnell would threaten a filibuster.
The argument most commonly made in the filibuster's favor is crudely partisan: 'Our side may be in the majority now, but someday it will be in the minority, and when that happens we'll want to block the other side's extremist agenda.'
Filibusters should require 35 senators to... make a commitment to continually debate an issue in reality, not just in theory. The number of votes needed to overcome a filibuster should be reduced to 55 from 60.
We shouldn't deny the right of the minority to filibuster, but we need to do a much better job of making them own it. That way, the American people could figure out who is being obstructionist and who is willing to compromise.
I mean, if you go back to 1960 on major pieces of legislation, the filibuster was used about eight percent of the time.
My way of viewing the talking filibuster was as a way of doing unanimous consent with your feet. You object by going down and talking.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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