Anyone who has followed my writing since 2010 knows that I am a very strong proponent of of filibuster reform. I am especially proud to have volunteered for the campaign of the man who has taken the lead in pushing to reform the filibuster, Oregon’s Senator, Jeff Merkley. I could not be more pleased that Elizabeth Warren has opted to join Jeff and make filibuster reform her first priority, and I urge you to join the struggle.
U.S. Sen.-elect Elizabeth Warren said yesterday she will join an effort to change the U.S. Senate filibuster rules, which she said repeatedly paralyze action on vital issues.
In a commentary in The Huffington Post, Ms. Warren said she plans to join seven other newly elected senators to lead the reform attempt on the first day of the new Senate session in January. If adopted, the rule change would require an opposing senator to stand on the floor defending his or her opposition to continue any delay on votes.
Currently, she said, rules do not require the senator opposing a vote to remain in the Senate chamber addressing the bill to continue the delays.
Senate rules currently require three-fifths, or 60 out of 100 votes, to end debate on a measure or an individual filibuster and allow it to go to a formal vote. But a single member can call for a filibuster to hold up votes on bills without remaining on the Senate floor to defend the delay until a closure vote is successful.
Ms. Warren said she wants to revert to a previous practice that would require any member of the Senate who wants to block closure of debate on a bill, to take to the floor to speak in defense of their opposition. That delay would then be limited to the time the opposition speaker continues voicing their opposition on the floor… [emphasis added]
Inserted from <The Worcester Telegram>
Rachel Maddow interviewed Elizabeth Warren last night.
The Democratic argument in opposition to filibuster reform is this. If the Republicans take back the Senate, this will impede our ability to block their most heinous proposals and appointments. This is wrong for two reasons. First, as Republicans have proven for the last four years, the governing party must be able to govern, even if we disagree. Republican abuse of the filibuster has given us four years of minority rule in the Senate. Second, you may be absolutely certain that if Republicans ever gain control of the Senate again, they will kill the filibuster without the slightest hesitation, so there remains no valid reason not to reform it now.
Jeff Merkley and has a place for you to go to reform the filibuster. I urge you to do so!