Foolish Fooling with the Filibuster
It's not surprising to anyone with a lick of sense that now that the Democrats are losing power in Congress and are reduced to a small majority in the Senate, that they would seek to change the rules to do away with the filibuster. With the House being in Republican control, the Dems' slim majority in the Senate is the only thing keeping the Obama Administration from being one of the major Democrat failures of this new and past centuries. The realization that a Republican filibuster in the Senate can defeat their slim majority is not an inspiring, first-decade kick-off for the progressive team, that's for certain.
That Senator Udall from my home state of New Mexico is leading the fight to eliminate the filibuster is enlightening in and of itself. It's glaringly obvious that the Democrat leadership looked around for a low-key, likable, innocuous, senatorial low-profile type to head up their campaign to do away with the filibuster. No Chuck Schumer types for this mission, oh no, pick a nobody like Udall that no one in the boroughs of New York or the ethnic ghettos of Los Angeles ever heard of. More importantly, they have got themselves a standard bearer whom most of Middle America has never heard of until now. Believe me, it's no accident that an obscure senator from one of our least-populated, bottom-performing states is the guy out in front here. It is fairly obvious that Udall had to be hand-picked by the Democrat leadership for this mission of undermining the power of the upcoming Republican congressional majority.
republic. Those Fathers of the Republic who preceded us were not blind to the vices that infect those of their own kind who would seek to lead.
Thomas Lifson adds:
Foolish indeed. Mitch McConnell has warned the Democrats that in a future Congress (say, in 2012), they may want to have a way of blocking a Republican Senate majority from passing legislation or confirming appointees. It is easy to imagine a GOP controlled Congress and GOP president undertaking vast reforms if the Democrat Senate majority no longer had the filibuster to block, say, total repeal of ObamaCare or elimination of thew Department of Education, among many other agenda items.
Because the GOP-run House can already block legislation objectionable to conservatives, this Senate move must be targeted at the Senate's confirmation powers for appointments (principally but not exclusively judicial), and treaties.
I would be very surprised if this move is successful. Too many Democrats are capable of looking two years into the future. There may be a move to make filibusters more difficult, instead of the mere declaration of intent to filibuster sufficient. Requiring a filibuster to involve actual speaking 24 hours a day would certainly slow down the Senate, and might not be such a bad idea.