Filibuster reform is just fine

The OlympianNovember 26, 2013 

Republicans can holler all they want about a rule change adopted by the U.S. Senate last week, but it was their own obstructionist tactics that finally ended misuse of the time-honored filibuster. Perhaps now the Senate can actually get some work done.

A simple majority of senators can now approve presidential appointments to Cabinet posts and the federal judiciary. This reform was long past due.

Republicans have filibustered President Obama’s executive appointments 16 times, something than had previously been done only 20 times in the past 60 years. Republicans have blocked one appointment, for the little-known Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, for more than two years.

None of these objections had anything to do with the nominee’s qualifications. It was about denying Obama the presidential prerogative to choose his own team. News flash: It’s called an election.

The filibuster was doomed, of course, as soon as it no longer meant senators had to stand on their feet and continue speaking night and day. Of late, a single senator could trigger a 60-vote supermajority by merely uttering the threat of a filibuster.

The Senate has been stalled for too long. It was past time for filibuster reform.

The Olympian is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service