Democrats Urging Harry Reid To Change Filibuster Rules

Posted by | December 23, 2010 15:59 | Filed under: Top Stories

Republicans exercised their filibuster rights more than ever this past session, and Democrats, wanting to change the ability to do that, have sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid asking him to address it.

The letter, delivered this week, expresses general frustration with what Democrats consider unprecedented obstruction and asks Reid to take steps to end those abuses. While it does not urge a specific solution, Democrats said it demonstrates increased backing in the majority for a proposal, championed by Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M., and others, to weaken the minority’s ability to tie the Senate calendar into parliamentary knots.

Among the chief revisions that Democrats say will likely be offered: Senators could not initiate a filibuster of a bill before it reaches the floor unless they first muster 40 votes for it, and they would have to remain on the floor to sustain it. That is a change from current rules, which require the majority leader to file a cloture motion to overcome an anonymous objection to a motion to proceed, and then wait 30 hours for a vote on it.

True, the feelings are reversed when Democrats are in the minority, but it’s a good idea to raise the bar for allowing a filibuster to happen.

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Copyright 2010 Liberaland
By: Alan

Alan Colmes is the publisher of Liberaland.

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