Filibuster ‘Fixed,’ Opportunity Missed

Senators Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell agreed to some minor fixes to the infamous filibuster which has allowed Republicans to slow down and prevent the most inconsequential of Obama’s initiatives.

Much is said about Harry Reid being pugnacious and obdurate as his youthful boxing career trained him for.  Looks to me like he’s devoted himself to prolonged and repeated clinches instead.

Progressive senators working to dramatically alter Senate rules were defeated on Thursday, with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and his counterpart, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), set to announce a series of compromise reforms on the Senate floor that fall far short of the demands. The language of the deal was obtained by HuffPost and can be read here and here.

 Fix the Senate Now, a coalition of over 50 progressive and labor organizations that has been tirelessly advocating for an end to the silent filibuster, called the emerging deal a “missed opportunity.”

“While the provisions included in the likely agreement may help with streamlining certain nominations, potentially a significant step forward, the agreement avoids measures that would actually raise the costs of Senate obstruction,” the group said in a statement. “Neither the talking filibuster provision nor the shifting the burden provision is expected to be included in the final package. While certain details remain important and unresolved, such as potential conditions attached to the elimination of filibusters on the motion to proceed, we know enough to sum up the agreement as follows: a missed opportunity to provide meaningful filibuster reform, while advancing some decent procedural improvements.”

Huffington Post

From Oregon: Fix the Filibuster

From a reader in Oregon: “We had the fortune of meeting our Senator in lil ole Pacific City on Friday.  Good gathering, pointed Qs re the war, civil rights & the dysfunctional Senate filibuster issue, below.  I encourage you all to support it if possible.”
Dear Friends –
We’re rocking!  So far, 148,919 people have signed our latest petition this week, calling on the leaders of the U.S. Senate to make sure that filibuster reform is strong and meaningful. To date, our campaign has now won the support of 391,000 Americans.
Next week we can end the silent filibuster and stop the hidden obstruction which has stalled progressive reforms for years.
Thanks to your advocacy, we have succeeded in putting filibuster reform squarely on the Senate’s agenda. Now we need to make sure that those reforms include the talking filibuster so we can end the back-room obstruction that defines the modern Senate. 
Our ability to reinvest in America, hold Wall Street accountable, create clean energy jobs and fight global climate change, and reform our broken campaign finance laws hangs in the balance.

Every last supporter of filibuster reform needs to step up right now. Our success depends on your voice.

We’re so close. Let’s get this done.
Senator Jeff Merkley