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(LA Times)   The filibuster can be eliminated by the majority party   (latimes.com) divider line 159
    More: Interesting, majority party, Strom Thurmond, filibusters, Goes to Washington, public laws, American Law, U.S. Senate  
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3796 clicks; posted to Politics » on 26 Nov 2012 at 11:26 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-11-26 11:59:53 AM

Dr Dreidel: Serious Black: Filibustering a motion to proceed is ludicrous. Toss that out, but leave the full filibuster.

I like Merkley's idea too. Five senators need to be on the floor to sustain a filibuster for the first 24 hours, then ten for the next 24 hours, then twenty after that. I'd personally say change it to twenty for the next 24 hours, and all forty after that. They don't necessarily need to be talking, but there needs to be a price for holding up legislation.

Also, we should presume consent is given to executive nominees if there is no up-or-down vote on their nomination within 90 days.

I also liked the "40 votes to sustain a 'filibuster'", rather than the "60 to break it" we have now from TFA. 58 or 59 votes to break a filibuster, out of 98 or 99 cast, should be enough.

I like the rising requirement rules (though, couldn't the majority just wait out the clock on that?), I like the "when shiat hits the fan, make 'em talk", I like the "only one chance at a filibuster vote" thing, rather than the...what, 9? they have now.


They waited out the clock on Bernie Sanders talking for eight hours, so I think waiting out the clock on forty people staying on the floor the whole time is just fine. And if the filibustering senators want to start wearing adult diapers, putting in catheters, ordering Chinese takeout to the Senate floor, and injecting themselves with caffeine to extend their filibuster, well, that's their prerogative.
 
2012-11-26 11:59:58 AM
You gut it now, then you will whine to no end the next time the opposing party is in the minority.

Personally, I think EVERYTHING should take a 2/3rd majority to pass.
 
2012-11-26 12:02:39 PM

Galloping Galoshes: Don't expect any argument from me. Both parties are getting so extreme that the folks in the middle are getting mighty lonely.


You look at the Democrats and think "they're getting so extreme"? What color is the sky in your world?
 
2012-11-26 12:02:50 PM

Geotpf: Oh, and the article has an error in it-the fillibuster can be changed by a simple majority at the start of a session of Congress (but not mid-session).


You're speaking of the Standing Rules of the Senate, and you are incorrect. Rule V specifically states "No motion to suspend, modify, or amend any rule, or any part thereof, shall be in order, except on one day's notice in writing, specifying precisely the rule or part proposed to be suspended, modified, or amended, and the purpose thereof. Any rule may be suspended without notice by the unanimous consent of the Senate, except as otherwise provided by the rules."

The second paragraph states that the rules remain in effect from one Congress to the next unless changed as provided in the rules.
 
2012-11-26 12:03:30 PM

Galloping Galoshes: Both parties are getting so extreme that the folks in the middle are getting mighty lonely.


Oh, you're one of those people.
 
2012-11-26 12:04:00 PM

mrshowrules: bulldg4life: People should be forced to stand in front of the senate and talk about why they are holding up the process. You shouldn't be able to just threaten to do it and be let off for free.

And, the idea that 60 votes is now needed to bring debates to an end is ridiculous.

Stand up and block legislation from being passed. If you can't do that, then a majority vote can pass legislation.

You should only have a fixed number of filibusters you can pull per Congress. Perhaps a fillibuster can only be used to delay any particular vote for 1 year (no longer). For instance, let's say you are late in 2013 or early 2014 and the DNC proposed new legislation that was not even discussed before. It might be reasonable to fillibuster until the 2014 election.

[upload.wikimedia.org image 500x396]


Too easily abused. Make it a percentage of bills that reach the Senate floor, to prevent a majority party just throwing out garbage at the beginning of a new Senate to wipe out the available filibusters.
 
2012-11-26 12:04:42 PM
The filibuster was meant to be an extreme measure that was used sparingly. The current 60-vote supermajority needed to pass anything is unconstitutional. That said, a complete repeal of the filibuster would take away a valuable tool of the minority party to protect against the excesses of the party in power.

The best suggestion I've heard is to do away with the ability to block a bill by threatening a filibuster. Force the senators seeking to block a bill to spend hours upon hours reading Campbell's soup recipes in front of cameras, like they did in the old days. You can filibuster if you wish, but be prepared to look like a fool and give future opponents tons of footage to use against you.
 
2012-11-26 12:06:02 PM

bulldg4life: mrshowrules: You should only have a fixed number of filibusters you can pull per Congress. Perhaps a fillibuster can only be used to delay any particular vote for 1 year (no longer). For instance, let's say you are late in 2013 or early 2014 and the DNC proposed new legislation that was not even discussed before. It might be reasonable to fillibuster until the 2014 election.

I don't want a fixed number because they would just find a way around it by submitting ridiculous bills or splitting bills to a million pieces.

And, blocking things for a year would just create massive lame duck sessions.


Curse my lack of refreshing!
 
2012-11-26 12:07:10 PM

LouDobbsAwaaaay: We don't need it to be eliminated. We just need it to be returned to the "filibuster", not the fake version where you just pretend to filibuster and everyone goes home for the day.


This. Must be too simple or something.
 
2012-11-26 12:09:23 PM

TofuTheAlmighty: Oh, you're one of those people.


Mighty happy, too.

DarnoKonrad: You can't be serious. What's the last "extreme" thing the DNC has proposed?


And to all the others that jumped on me, I wasn't speaking of proposals, I was recalling the overheated, vitriolic rhetoric filling the airwaves. Demonizing the other side and avoiding thoughtful discussion of issues. Running for office 24/7, to the point that hard problems aren't dealt with and that every decision is colored by "what the other side might do with it."

HeartBurnKid: What color is the sky in your world?


Blue, with a tinge of brown near the horizon. Not terribly healthy, I'm afraid.
 
2012-11-26 12:09:39 PM

Klivian: mrshowrules: bulldg4life: People should be forced to stand in front of the senate and talk about why they are holding up the process. You shouldn't be able to just threaten to do it and be let off for free.

And, the idea that 60 votes is now needed to bring debates to an end is ridiculous.

Stand up and block legislation from being passed. If you can't do that, then a majority vote can pass legislation.

You should only have a fixed number of filibusters you can pull per Congress. Perhaps a fillibuster can only be used to delay any particular vote for 1 year (no longer). For instance, let's say you are late in 2013 or early 2014 and the DNC proposed new legislation that was not even discussed before. It might be reasonable to fillibuster until the 2014 election.

[upload.wikimedia.org image 500x396]

Too easily abused. Make it a percentage of bills that reach the Senate floor, to prevent a majority party just throwing out garbage at the beginning of a new Senate to wipe out the available filibusters.


Percentages are messing. If the measure is a 3/5ths majority for cloture. The minority should only be allowed to filibuster 2 bills of every 5.
 
2012-11-26 12:10:14 PM

dwrash: You gut it now, then you will whine to no end the next time the opposing party is in the minority.

Personally, I think EVERYTHING should take a 2/3rd majority to pass.


So the best government is the one that is too slow and ponderous to react to change?
 
2012-11-26 12:11:19 PM

imontheinternet: The current 60-vote supermajority needed to pass anything is unconstitutional.


The constitution allows both the House and Senate to make their own rules: "Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behaviour, and, with the Concurrence of two thirds, expel a Member." Therefore, you are wrong.
 
2012-11-26 12:14:39 PM

odinsposse: dwrash: You gut it now, then you will whine to no end the next time the opposing party is in the minority.

Personally, I think EVERYTHING should take a 2/3rd majority to pass.

So the best government is the one that is too slow and ponderous to react to change?


Absolutely... no legislation is preferably to the pork laden, massive loopholed, exempted pieces of crap they pass these days.
 
2012-11-26 12:14:44 PM

Mugato: RminusQ: Mugato: Filibusterering senators should be beaten to death.

If you ever want an excuse to shoot out your TV Elvis style just watch C-SPAN for 5 minutes.

Congressmen should be required to have their debates in the form of rap battles. MC Biden lays down the beat.

Throw in breakdancing.


Given the average age of a Senator, that would sound like a bowl of Rice Krispies.
 
2012-11-26 12:15:30 PM
The three reforms proposed in the linked article are logical and reasonable.

Which means they'll never be instituted.
 
2012-11-26 12:15:57 PM

mrshowrules: Klivian: mrshowrules: bulldg4life: People should be forced to stand in front of the senate and talk about why they are holding up the process. You shouldn't be able to just threaten to do it and be let off for free.

And, the idea that 60 votes is now needed to bring debates to an end is ridiculous.

Stand up and block legislation from being passed. If you can't do that, then a majority vote can pass legislation.

You should only have a fixed number of filibusters you can pull per Congress. Perhaps a fillibuster can only be used to delay any particular vote for 1 year (no longer). For instance, let's say you are late in 2013 or early 2014 and the DNC proposed new legislation that was not even discussed before. It might be reasonable to fillibuster until the 2014 election.

[upload.wikimedia.org image 500x396]

Too easily abused. Make it a percentage of bills that reach the Senate floor, to prevent a majority party just throwing out garbage at the beginning of a new Senate to wipe out the available filibusters.

Percentages are messing. If the measure is a 3/5ths majority for cloture. The minority should only be allowed to filibuster 2 bills of every 5.


That doesn't work. The minority party could just flood the inbox with a bunch of post office renamings.
 
2012-11-26 12:16:05 PM

Serious Black: Dr Dreidel: I like the rising requirement rules (though, couldn't the majority just wait out the clock on that?), I like the "when shiat hits the fan, make 'em talk", I like the "only one chance at a filibuster vote" thing, rather than the...what, 9? they have now.

They waited out the clock on Bernie Sanders talking for eight hours, so I think waiting out the clock on forty people staying on the floor the whole time is just fine. And if the filibustering senators want to start wearing adult diapers, putting in catheters, ordering Chinese takeout to the Senate floor, and injecting themselves with caffeine to extend their filibuster, well, that's their prerogative.


What I mean is that a rule which says: "A filibuster - X Senators voting against bringing a bill to the floor for an up-or-down vote - shall only be allowed within X days of the bill's first debate" is basically begging the majority to hold the bill for that long plus one day to break the filibuster. I guess so long as the voting threshhold never breaks 40 people and the filibuster window has a parallel "if it's not taken up after the same number of days, it dies" clause, I'm OK.
 
2012-11-26 12:16:22 PM
Don't remove the filibuster, just enforce it. Make them stand there and read the phone book.

That way supporters know who they are and the rest of the country knows who to blame. No more secret holds, no more threats.

Obstruct in public or shut up.
 
2012-11-26 12:19:44 PM

Galloping Galoshes: imontheinternet: The current 60-vote supermajority needed to pass anything is unconstitutional.

The constitution allows both the House and Senate to make their own rules: "Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behaviour, and, with the Concurrence of two thirds, expel a Member." Therefore, you are wrong.


The Constitution gives specific examples where supermajorities are needed to pass bills, and those exceptions are very limited. Congress was designed to be run by majority rule except in those instances. The filibuster evolved as a means for a senator to take extreme action against a bill he or she thought was especially bad for the country.

The fact that the House and Senate can establish their own procedures does not mean that they can alter their basic constitutional structure. If the House and Senate passed a rule that every vote had to be unanimous, do you think that would be constitutional as well? What about a rule that said the Supreme Court had to ratify each bill as constitutional before a vote could be called?
 
2012-11-26 12:20:21 PM

historycat: Don't remove the filibuster, just enforce it. Make them stand there and read the phone book.

That way supporters know who they are and the rest of the country knows who to blame. No more secret holds, no more threats.

Obstruct in public or shut up.


Standing around spouting off bullshiat in order to fark up a vote on something doesn't sound very democratic or even representative republic. Congress is full of farking over paid corrupt children. It's farking pathetic.
 
2012-11-26 12:24:06 PM

historycat: Don't remove the filibuster, just enforce it. Make them stand there and read the phone book.

That way supporters know who they are and the rest of the country knows who to blame. No more secret holds, no more threats.

Obstruct in public or shut up.


I'll add:

Committees can only consider any issue or nomination for 90 days, then must send it to the Senate floor, regardless of "holds".

But other than that, yeah. If the minority is actually willing to read soup can labels and the phone book to stop legislation, it might be a good idea to reconsider it.
 
2012-11-26 12:24:10 PM

imontheinternet: Galloping Galoshes: imontheinternet: The current 60-vote supermajority needed to pass anything is unconstitutional.

The constitution allows both the House and Senate to make their own rules: "Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behaviour, and, with the Concurrence of two thirds, expel a Member." Therefore, you are wrong.

The Constitution gives specific examples where supermajorities are needed to pass bills, and those exceptions are very limited. Congress was designed to be run by majority rule except in those instances. The filibuster evolved as a means for a senator to take extreme action against a bill he or she thought was especially bad for the country.

The fact that the House and Senate can establish their own procedures does not mean that they can alter their basic constitutional structure. If the House and Senate passed a rule that every vote had to be unanimous, do you think that would be constitutional as well? What about a rule that said the Supreme Court had to ratify each bill as constitutional before a vote could be called?


If the Senate passed a rule that every vote had to be unanimous, that would probably be constitutional. However, requiring another branch to act, or even the other house, would not be, as that falls outside the "rules of its proceedings."
 
2012-11-26 12:25:46 PM

The Jami Turman Fan Club: If the minority is actually willing to read soup can labels and the phone book to stop legislation, it might be a good idea to reconsider it.


Disagree with this. Just look at recent history...Senate GOPers woud block all sorts of things the Dems proposed, solely to frustrate Obama's ability to accomplish something.
 
2012-11-26 12:26:10 PM

The Jami Turman Fan Club: Committees can only consider any issue or nomination for 90 days, then must send it to the Senate floor, regardless of "holds".


The entire house can pull something out of committee. But the majority party controls the committees, and committee votes are determined by simple majority. If something gets stuck in committee, at least some members of the majority party are involved in keeping it there.
 
2012-11-26 12:27:34 PM

Serious Black: Filibustering a motion to proceed is ludicrous. Toss that out, but leave the full filibuster.

I like Merkley's idea too. Five senators need to be on the floor to sustain a filibuster for the first 24 hours, then ten for the next 24 hours, then twenty after that. I'd personally say change it to twenty for the next 24 hours, and all forty after that. They don't necessarily need to be talking, but there needs to be a price for holding up legislation.

Also, we should presume consent is given to executive nominees if there is no up-or-down vote on their nomination within 90 days.


Don't like your latter proposal. I can imagine a GOP president nominating a horse for a judgeship and having the GOP-led senate hem and haw on purpose for three months to get that nag on the bench. I wouldn't doubt they would exploit and abuse that rule if it came down to having such a rule.

The GOP are masters at exploiting rules. It's as if rules were made to be tested to their utmost limits by the GOP.
 
2012-11-26 12:31:14 PM

dericwater: The GOP are masters at exploiting rules. It's as if rules were made to be tested to their utmost limits by the GOP.


Really. I give you Robert Byrd, acknowledged premier expert on the Senate rules, who was... a Democrat. I recall one time he very carefully filled the amendment tree for a bill, ensuring that President Clinton's proposal would get an up or down vote in the end. Unfortunately, a lot of Senate Democrats wanted to amend it, and he pissed them off as well, and Clinton's bill lost.
 
2012-11-26 12:32:11 PM

dericwater: The GOP are masters at exploiting rules. It's as if rules were made to be tested to their utmost limits by the GOP.


My experience is that all congressmen and staffers are experts at exploiting rules, regardless of party affiliation.
 
2012-11-26 12:33:07 PM

Mugato: historycat: Don't remove the filibuster, just enforce it. Make them stand there and read the phone book.

That way supporters know who they are and the rest of the country knows who to blame. No more secret holds, no more threats.

Obstruct in public or shut up.

Standing around spouting off bullshiat in order to fark up a vote on something doesn't sound very democratic or even representative republic. Congress is full of farking over paid corrupt children. It's farking pathetic.


So put the spot light on the guy doing it and the issue he's railing against. If he's up there long enough, CNN, FOX, and MSNBC will catch wind and start airing it and the public will judge him, for better or worse.

I think this would add a bit more democracy into the process than legislation and nominations quietly dying at the hands of a couple senators and scantly documented by the media.
 
2012-11-26 12:36:44 PM
"I'm sure we can come to some arrangement," said Ford. "Excuse me!"
he shouted.
Mr. Prosser (who was arguing with a spokesman for the bulldozer drivers
about whether or not Arthur Dent constituted a mental health hazard, and
how much they should get paid if he did) looked around. He was surprised
and slightly alarmed to find that Arthur had company.
"Yes? Hello?" he called. "Has Mr. Dent come to his senses yet?"
"Can we for the moment," called Ford, "assume that he hasn't?"
"Well?" sighed Mr. Prosser.
"And can we also assume," said Ford, "that he's going to be staying here
all day?"
"So?"
"So all your men are going to be standing around all day doing nothing?"
"Could be, could be ..."
"Well, if you're resigned to doing that anyway, you don't actually need
him to lie here all the time do you?"
"What?"
"You don't," said Ford patiently, "actually need him here."
Mr. Prosser thought about this.
"Well no, not as such ...", he said, "not exactly need ..."
Prosser was worried. He thought that one of them wasn't making a lot
of sense.
Ford said, "So if you would just like to take it as read that he's actually
here, then he and I could slip off down to the pub for half an hour. How does
that sound?"
Mr. Prosser thought it sounded perfectly potty.
"That sounds perfectly reasonable," he said in a reassuring tone of voice,
wondering who he was trying to reassure.
"And if you want to pop off for a quick one yourself later on," said Ford,
"we can always cover up for you in return."
"Thank you very much," said Mr. Prosser who no longer knew how to
play this at all, "thank you very much, yes, that's very kind ..." He frowned,
then smiled, then tried to do both at once, failed, grasped hold of his fur hat
and rolled it fitfully round the top of his head. He could only assume that
he had just won.
"So," continued Ford Prefect, "if you would just like to come over here
and lie down ..."
"What?" said Mr. Prosser.
"Ah, I'm sorry," said Ford, "perhaps I hadn't made myself fully clear.
Somebody's got to lie in front of the bulldozers haven't they? Or there won't
be anything to stop them driving into Mr. Dent's house will there?"
"What?" said Mr. Prosser again.
"It's very simple," said Ford, "my client, Mr. Dent, says that he will stop
lying here in the mud on the sole condition that you come and take over from
him."
"What are you talking about?" said Arthur, but Ford nudged him with
his shoe to be quiet.
"You want me," said Mr. Prosser, spelling out this new thought to him-
self, "to come and lie there ..."
"Yes."
"In front of the bulldozer?"
"Yes."
"Instead of Mr. Dent."
"Yes."
"In the mud."
"In, as you say it, the mud."
"In return for which you will take Mr. Dent with you down to the pub?"
"That's it," said Ford. "That's it exactly."
Mr. Prosser took a few nervous steps forward and stopped.
"Promise?" he said.
"Promise," said Ford. He turned to Arthur.

/always reminded of this scene when the topic of the filibuster (as it is currently) comes up
//if this quote needs cited then this site is farked
 
2012-11-26 12:37:32 PM

Trivia Jockey: The Jami Turman Fan Club: If the minority is actually willing to read soup can labels and the phone book to stop legislation, it might be a good idea to reconsider it.

Disagree with this. Just look at recent history...Senate GOPers woud block all sorts of things the Dems proposed, solely to frustrate Obama's ability to accomplish something.


As it stands now, they can block anything they like, for as long as they like outside of the public view. Forcing them to stand and speak in chamber puts the obstruction in full view of the public eye. That can't be anything but a good thing. If your senator is consistently in the press, doing nothing but reading soup labels and the sports pages, you might consider electing someone that will actually work for you, rather than complain about a faceless "do-nothing" legislature. Obstruction as a tactic is not always bad, but put a face on it.
 
2012-11-26 12:37:41 PM
The filibuster can be eliminated by the majority party

Only if that party has a super-majority.

The best thing that could be done right now is to make Senators who threaten to filibuster actually do it. That would cut out 95% of that bullshiat right away.
 
2012-11-26 12:38:26 PM

Nuclear Monk: So put the spot light on the guy doing it and the issue he's railing against. If he's up there long enough, CNN, FOX, and MSNBC will catch wind and start airing it and the public will judge him, for better or worse.


Except the public doesn't watch, understand or care about any of that.
 
2012-11-26 12:40:54 PM
Ever notice how the folks insisting that X, Y, or Z violates the letter and spirit of the constitution seem to have no problem with their party using the filibuster - which is found nowhere in the constitution - to force the Senate to impose a 60 vote supermajority requirement instead of the constitutionally mandated majority?

Senate rule reform is needed. Right now those rules vest far too much power in the hands of the minority party or, in many cases, a single senator.
 
2012-11-26 12:41:08 PM

dwrash: odinsposse: dwrash: You gut it now, then you will whine to no end the next time the opposing party is in the minority.

Personally, I think EVERYTHING should take a 2/3rd majority to pass.

So the best government is the one that is too slow and ponderous to react to change?

Absolutely... no legislation is preferably to the pork laden, massive loopholed, exempted pieces of crap they pass these days.


wrong. the harder you make it to pass the more people you have to give a handout to to get their vote. that would result in even more pork.
 
2012-11-26 12:42:04 PM
Reform could happen and Elizabeth Warren is going to help. Enjoy having her in the Senate Republicans.
 
2012-11-26 12:42:32 PM

dwrash: You gut it now, then you will whine to no end the next time the opposing party is in the minority.

Personally, I think EVERYTHING should take a 2/3rd majority to pass.


How does that make any sense at all?
 
2012-11-26 12:44:17 PM
They should enforce old school filibusters, where you are on the floor, reading from a book, wearing a diaper.
 
2012-11-26 12:46:02 PM

lilbjorn: The filibuster can be eliminated by the majority party

Only if that party has a super-majority.

The best thing that could be done right now is to make Senators who threaten to filibuster actually do it. That would cut out 95% of that bullshiat right away.



This. At a minimum, they need to restore the whole point of the rule in the first place - that once a senator is recognized and has the floor, he/she will not be cut off from speaking. The filibuster rule has transformed from a legislative debate rule to a de facto supermajority requirement. Either return it to its true roots or get rid of it.
 
2012-11-26 12:46:17 PM
The filibuster can be eliminated by the majority party

But they won't do it. This discussion happens as often as the electoral college debate. Neither are going away. The Senate isn't going to dispose of a key political tool, and a Constitutional amendment beridding us of the EC won't pass (And this is a joke and will never f*cking happen, stop linking to it.).
 
2012-11-26 12:46:32 PM

Galloping Galoshes: If the Senate passed a rule that every vote had to be unanimous, that would probably be constitutional.


There's a term in interpreting the law called "expressio unius." It means that when specific exceptions are given to the regular rule, one should interpret those examples as being an exhaustive list. The Constitution provides such a list of bills that require a supermajority, and everything else was placed under majority rule. If the House or Senate sought to usurp the Constitution by replacing majority rule with unanimity, the Supreme Court would strike it down, even under an extreme original intent or textualist view.
 
2012-11-26 12:48:21 PM

More_Like_A_Stain: As it stands now, they can block anything they like, for as long as they like outside of the public view.


Yup, that's why I fully support filibuster reform.
 
2012-11-26 12:50:38 PM
I don't know, I admit I don't know everything about politics but it all sounds like playground bullshiat only it's performed by old white guys.
 
2012-11-26 12:51:18 PM

lilbjorn: The best thing that could be done right now is to make Senators who threaten to filibuster actually do it. That would cut out 95% of that bullshiat right away.


This sentiment has been expressed about a dozen times in this thread alone. It's also misinformed.
This change to the Constitution was not the result of, say, a formal amendment, but a procedural rule adopted in 1975: a revision of Senate Rule 22, which was the old cloture rule. Before 1975, it took two-thirds of the Senate to end a filibuster, but it was the "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" filibuster: if senators wanted to stop a vote, they had to bring in the cots and the coffee and read from Grandma's recipe for chicken soup until, unshaven, they keeled over from their own rhetorical exhaust.

For the record, nothing like Senate Rule 22 appears in the Constitution, nor was there unlimited debate until Vice President Aaron Burr presided over the Senate in the early 180os. In 1917, after a century of chaos, the Senate put in the old Rule 22 to stop unlimited filibusters. Because it was about stopping real, often distressing, floor debate, one might have been able to defend that rule under Article I, Section 5 of the Constitution, which says, "Each house may determine the rule of its proceedings."

As revised in 1975, Senate Rule 22 seemed to be an improvement: it required 60 senators, not 67, to stop floor debate. But there also came a significant change in de facto Senate practice: to maintain a filibuster, senators no longer had to keep talking. Nowadays, they don't even have to start; they just say they will, and that's enough. Senators need not be on the floor at all. They can be at home watching Jimmy Stewart on cable. Senate Rule 22 now exists to cut off what are ghost filibusters, disembodied debates.
 
2012-11-26 12:56:23 PM

Mugato: I don't know, I admit I don't know everything about politics but it all sounds like playground bullshiat only it's performed by old white guys.


It does have striking similarities to people defecating in sandboxes. You know what other species does that? Turtles.

usr.audioasylum.com
 
2012-11-26 12:56:42 PM

Galloping Galoshes: Serious Black: Also, we should presume consent is given to executive nominees if there is no up-or-down vote on their nomination within 90 days.

Probably unconstitutional. The Senate's "advice and consent" is required.


They took care of that with the war powers act didn't they? If you can commit war for 90 days why not fill a job?
 
JFC
2012-11-26 12:56:52 PM
Reforming the filibuster doesn't come up in the Whitehouse petition site search.
Someone ought to make one.

https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/ (pops out)
 
2012-11-26 12:57:05 PM

DarnoKonrad: You can't be serious. What's the last "extreme" thing the DNC has proposed?


Feeding poor people.
 
2012-11-26 01:00:37 PM

coeyagi: Mugato: I don't know, I admit I don't know everything about politics but it all sounds like playground bullshiat only it's performed by old white guys.

It does have striking similarities to people defecating in sandboxes. You know what other species does that? Turtles.


...and they're always talking about gay marriage leading to marrying turtles. Wishful thinking perhaps.
 
2012-11-26 01:01:53 PM

Galloping Galoshes: imontheinternet: Galloping Galoshes: imontheinternet: The current 60-vote supermajority needed to pass anything is unconstitutional.

The constitution allows both the House and Senate to make their own rules: "Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behaviour, and, with the Concurrence of two thirds, expel a Member." Therefore, you are wrong.

The Constitution gives specific examples where supermajorities are needed to pass bills, and those exceptions are very limited. Congress was designed to be run by majority rule except in those instances. The filibuster evolved as a means for a senator to take extreme action against a bill he or she thought was especially bad for the country.

The fact that the House and Senate can establish their own procedures does not mean that they can alter their basic constitutional structure. If the House and Senate passed a rule that every vote had to be unanimous, do you think that would be constitutional as well? What about a rule that said the Supreme Court had to ratify each bill as constitutional before a vote could be called?

If the Senate passed a rule that every vote had to be unanimous, that would probably be constitutional. However, requiring another branch to act, or even the other house, would not be, as that falls outside the "rules of its proceedings."


Expressio unius est exclusio alterius. The expression of one thing excludes all others. There are a number of specific cases in the Constitution where more than a majority vote is required, i.e. treaties. This is a common legal notion in contracts, and it was mentioned by many of the people who were part of the Constitutional Convention. That would suggest that any rule requiring more than a majority vote by either chamber is unconstitutional.
 
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