Friday, January 29, 2021

End The Filibuster

 ("Mitch McConnell Should Leave the History Lessons to Others")

The early years of the Obama presidency were spent in large measure in reduction of aspirations, created not by the imposing barrier of equal representation in the Senate, for the Democrats at moments numbered 60 strong, but by one word. The restructuring of our health care system diluted and Rube Goldberged, the greatest good sacrificed at the altar of the McConnell led threat of filibuster.

We have seen the Senate reduced in stature and purpose. This body neutered, made the place where governing disappears, where ideas go to wither and die.

As Joe Biden surveys the landscape before him, the devastations of Mr. Trump's doing omnipresent, he understands that he must cobble together his response not through the Senate but around it. His power to alter our course through 50 votes and his vice president's tie breaker nothing but illusion. 

It is long past time for the filibuster to go the way of the dodo bird. The image of Jimmy Stewart holding the floor in an act of nobility, of Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, of the filibuster being all that stands in defense of honor and integrity, is as unmatched to reality as the thought that Mr. McConnell stands at the ready to walk hand in hand down the Capitol aisle with the Democrats.

Let the Senate go back to being an actual functioning legislative body. Let those in the majority do what they were elected to do. Let our votes translate into action. Let us stop the pretense and meet the crying needs of the moment with certainty and strength.

End the filibuster.


PickleBiz said...

Once the filibuster is gone, all hope of a collaborative government goes with it. While it is certainly true that it has been viciously weaponized, and since McConnell it has probably been used more in a decade than in the century prior, abandoning it is abandoning a fundamental tenant of our democracy - majority rule, minority consent. It is really up to the voters to become so sick and tired of inaction in Washington that they put senators in office who really can work together - legislators who put country over party. Sadly I don't see this happening any time soon though, but removing the filibuster is an act of surrender to the forces that have eroded common sense and will put us even further away from our ideals. Yes the Dems have the upper hand now and can ram through some much-needed reforms that align with my personal views, but the next congress, if the Republicans hold the majority, will just undo everything. The whole damn thing is broken. Beyond repair it seems, until the people step up and throw the bums out. I'm not holding my breath.

Robert said...

The filibuster was nowhere in the contemplation of the founders and was later introduced not for the purposes now utilized. The House and the Senate were BOTH considered to be majority rules, the supermajority is a fictionalized conceit

Anonymous said...

I agree heartily!