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Wed Jan 23, 2013, 12:54 PM

Harry Reid Declares He Has 51 Votes For Filibuster Reform

Source: TPM

Senate Democrats have the 51 votes necessary to weaken the filibuster, the top two Democrats declared unequivocally on Wednesday.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said he’s continuing discussions with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) over a bipartisan resolution. But when asked if he has the 51 votes for filibuster reform via the constitutional option if that fails, he didn’t mince words.

“Yes,” Reid said.

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) told reporters that the Merkley-Udall “full talking filibuster” approach likely won’t happen because it “does not have 51 votes.” But he said a more modest package that Reid has put forth to McConnell, aimed at shifting the burden from a governing majority to an obstructing minority, would pass.

Read more: http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2013/01/harry-reid-has-51-votes-filibuster-reform.php

57 replies, 7835 views

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Reply Harry Reid Declares He Has 51 Votes For Filibuster Reform (Original post)
UrbScotty Jan 2013 OP
HERVEPA Jan 2013 #1
NYC Liberal Jan 2013 #2
UrbScotty Jan 2013 #3
HERVEPA Jan 2013 #4
davidwparker Jan 2013 #48
merrily Jan 2013 #18
zipplewrath Jan 2013 #21
merrily Jan 2013 #25
PoliticAverse Jan 2013 #5
Dragonfli Jan 2013 #6
cascadiance Jan 2013 #7
Volaris Jan 2013 #42
bemildred Jan 2013 #8
stopwastingmymoney Jan 2013 #9
rampart Jan 2013 #10
Bandit Jan 2013 #11
PoliticAverse Jan 2013 #12
eggplant Jan 2013 #20
PoliticAverse Jan 2013 #23
eggplant Jan 2013 #31
leftyohiolib Jan 2013 #14
bluestateguy Jan 2013 #13
merrily Jan 2013 #17
golfguru Jan 2013 #43
robinlynne Jan 2013 #15
jeff47 Jan 2013 #32
robinlynne Jan 2013 #36
DCBob Jan 2013 #39
wicket Jan 2013 #16
yurbud Jan 2013 #40
wicket Jan 2013 #41
yurbud Jan 2013 #54
EC Jan 2013 #19
bfealk Jan 2013 #22
demwing Jan 2013 #49
cascadiance Jan 2013 #55
Firebrand Gary Jan 2013 #24
hrmjustin Jan 2013 #26
UnrepentantLiberal Jan 2013 #27
Smilo Jan 2013 #28
NinetySix Jan 2013 #29
sakabatou Jan 2013 #30
Javaman Jan 2013 #33
The Wizard Jan 2013 #34
healthnut7 Jan 2013 #35
KansDem Jan 2013 #37
humbled_opinion Jan 2013 #38
Phlem Jan 2013 #44
RandiFan1290 Jan 2013 #45
russspeakeasy Jan 2013 #46
xxxsdesdexxx Jan 2013 #47
BigD_95 Jan 2013 #50
awake Jan 2013 #51
Tom Rinaldo Jan 2013 #52
NorthCarolina Jan 2013 #53
blkmusclmachine Jan 2013 #56
Javaman Jan 2013 #57

Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 12:58 PM

1. How exciting. Reform without actual change.

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Response to HERVEPA (Reply #1)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 01:01 PM

2. Isn't he saying he has the votes for the nuclear ("constitutional") option?

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Response to NYC Liberal (Reply #2)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 01:11 PM

3. Seems to be the case... (nt)

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Response to NYC Liberal (Reply #2)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 01:15 PM

4. The nuclear option is just the method to get the "reform" passed.

Look at the body of the original message. What he's looking to use the nuclear option to do isn't worth much, and will still require the 60 votes to get something through. It'll just make the Rethuglicans look a little uglier when they do it, and they don't really care about that.

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Response to HERVEPA (Reply #4)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 01:08 AM

48. +1

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Response to NYC Liberal (Reply #2)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:17 PM

18. I thought the nuclear option was eliminating the filibuster entirely, not

only requiring an actual filibuster.

ETA: What makes anything about a filibuster "constitutional?" the Constitution says each house makes rules for its conduct of business (not exact words).

This is a confusing story.

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Response to merrily (Reply #18)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:40 PM

21. Actually

The "nuclear option" was a reference to changing the rules mid stream, without a 60 vote majority. This is creating the rules at the beginning of a session, using a relatively "standard" 51 majority vote.

What is changing is that the minority must muster 41 votes, instead of the majority getting 60. As such, people not voting, (absent, vacant, abstaining, etc.) can't obstruct progress, only those present, able, and willing to vote against progress can do so.

It is small, but it is not insignificant. The loss of Teddy wouldn't have been such a problem under these rules. The GOP would never have gotten 41 votes to obstruct. Teddy being dead, effectively had him "voting" with the minority. Under these rules a "dead" senator "votes" with the majority.

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #21)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:52 PM

25. Thanks, but I am only more confused.

Now that you mention it, though, I think you are correct: The nuclear option was indeed making any change to the filibuster rule with only 51 votes, though the change that were discussing at the time that the term "nuclear option" became popular was eliminating the filibuster entirely.

This is what TPM says:
In other words, 41 senators could silently block debate from beginning, but once 60 senators vote to move to debate, filibustering senators must speak on the floor.
So, one Senator giving notice of intent to filibuster, or whatever mumbo jumbo now they use to faux filibuster is out the window, which is a good thing.

But, they need 60 Senators even to require a real filibuster. That is going to be as hard as getting 60 to vote for cloture. It really is not very much of a reform.


As far as Kennedy, his temporary replacement was appointed fairly quickly, wasn't he?

IMO, there should be a uniform rule about filling Senate vacancies, but I guess that would take a Constitutional amendment and that is a separate issue anyway..

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 01:16 PM

5. So he has 51 votes, but not for the talking filibuster then ? n/t

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #5)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 01:21 PM

6. “full talking filibuster” approach likely won’t happen because it “does not have 51 votes.”

“The proposal from the majority leader,” Durbin said, “suggests changes in reducing and eliminating the motion to proceed, how many cloture votes you’ll face in conference committee, what happens to nominations after cloture, whether it’s 30 hours a piece or 2 hours a piece


Sounds like a deal negotiation to limit it's use for some things while leaving the "phone it in and call it a filibuster" for passing the laws themselves. I am sure we will get a handshake deal assuring Reid they promise not to obstruct everything. Reid likes handshake agreements from Republicans or at least has often given that impression.

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Response to Dragonfli (Reply #6)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 01:26 PM

7. I recall that two of the remaining senators to get the talking filibuster were Boxer and Leahy...

... and he just needed two votes for the talking filibuster. It seems that they shouldn't be blocking this.

Shouldn't we all be calling Boxer's and Leahy's offices to pressure them to do the talking filibuster now? If it's not them blocking it, then who on the Democratic side is LYING about their support for the talking filibuster? They need to be exposed for not being honest to their constituents on where they stand.

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Response to Dragonfli (Reply #6)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 09:06 PM

42. "Reid likes handshake agreements from Republicans..."

There's a reacharound joke in there somewhere, but I'm too tired to actually find it at the moment...

Someone else will have to "handle the ball" on this one

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #5)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 01:32 PM

8. The deal seems to be that to obstruct, you must show you have 41 votes.

As opposed to emailing Harry anonymously.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 01:51 PM

9. I just called Boxer's office


The number is 202-224-3553

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 01:57 PM

10. caution : this reform looks good now, but we may have ample time for regrets.

dems are almost sure to be in the minority in 2015. look at the map, and be very afraid of what might happen with reid as minority leader.

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Response to rampart (Reply #10)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 02:03 PM

11. You do know Senators are elcted by the entire state and not by district as Representatives are?

In most states Democrats have a majority of voters. It is because of gerry-mandered districts that Republican Representatives even have a chance......

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Response to rampart (Reply #10)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 02:19 PM

12. If the Republicans take the Senate in 2014, they could just change the rules anyway. n/t

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #12)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:38 PM

20. So let's do nothing for the next two years? n/t

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Response to eggplant (Reply #20)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:42 PM

23. No, I was refuting the idea that the rule shouldn't be changed now

because the Democrats might become the minority party in the Senate in 2014.


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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #23)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 04:41 PM

31. Heh. My bad. Let's agree to violently agree. ;-) n/t

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Response to rampart (Reply #10)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:00 PM

14. WE ALREADY HAVE REGRETS look at all the bills and appointments that have been silibustered

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 02:21 PM

13. Now would be a really good time for Ruth Bader Ginsberg to announce her retirement

This will allow her replacement a greater likelihood of a prompt confirmation.

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Response to bluestateguy (Reply #13)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:15 PM

17. If she wanted to retire, I think she would have done it during his first term, rather

than bank on his re-election.

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Response to bluestateguy (Reply #13)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 10:05 PM

43. Why should she retire?

She can live to be 100, and it is a lifetime appointment.

Besides the pay is great, working conditions are superb and she gets deluxe healthcare.
She would be nuts to retire prematurely.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:09 PM

15. the more odest package looks like NOTHING. 41 votes to filibuster needed to kill

voting on any bill. In toher words the republicans can kill any bill they choose to do, and can do it now with our permission. How is this anything good?

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Response to robinlynne (Reply #15)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 04:48 PM

32. Because it puts the effort on the minority

Right now, need to gather 60 senators to break a filibuster. Senator in the hospital? That's a vote to keep the filibuster going.

After this change, that ill senator is a vote to break the filibuster. In addition, you could keep calling votes over and over again to tie up the minority while your side can go do whatever they want.

Right now, a filibuster is as difficult as a phone call. After this, it takes much more effort. It's not as good as the "talking filibuster" bill, but it's still a huge improvement.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #32)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 06:01 PM

36. interesting.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #32)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 07:31 PM

39. yes. that is the real significance.

it could help.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:13 PM

16. Then DO IT!

n/t

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Response to wicket (Reply #16)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 07:56 PM

40. No shit. Democrats have folded so often, announcing their intentions to do something good

doesn't even merit a blip of optimism until they actually do it.

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Response to yurbud (Reply #40)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 08:20 PM

41. YUP!!!!

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Response to yurbud (Reply #40)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 01:22 PM

54. ....and sadly, Reid just proved me right.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:32 PM

19. Then hurry up and do it

before some blue dog changes their mind.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:40 PM

22. BFD - No talking filibuster, no reform

If there is no talking filibuster, we won't get any change at all.

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Response to bfealk (Reply #22)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 06:31 AM

49. and you base this knowledge on?

what?

Really...on what?

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Response to demwing (Reply #49)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 02:11 PM

55. Well, if the Republicans don't have 40 votes to maintain a filibuster, the blue dogs will help them.

... by making sure that the Dems don't have 50 votes there to vote something in when the filibuster is "stopped" then. And of course with no talking filibuster, NOONE will know about it, just the way the corporatist lobbyist owned senators want it!

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:52 PM

24. Get it done. The talking filibuster is essential... Sunlight = Disinfectant

We have an absurd amount of Senate confirmations to get done, get them done! Judiciary.....

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:53 PM

26. This should be interesting.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:56 PM

27. What a surprise.

 

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 03:57 PM

28. Reid: We have 51 votes

but McTurtle doesn't want this so.................

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 04:10 PM

29. An additional aspect of this change that many of you don't seem to recognize

 

is that the minority, in putting together 41 votes to block the progress of any bill, confirmation, etc., would have to go ON RECORD as having voted to stop the bill proceeding to a vote. This way, although the majority might only be able to put together 56 votes to proceed (enough to pass the measure, but currently not enough to break the filibuster), the change would permit any majority to successfully vote to pass the measure if the minority were unable to muster the full 41.

As it is now, if a Senator chooses to exercise the filibuster, it is the MAJORITY who have to go on record to proceed. So what we have now is the lazy man's filibuster, where I don't have to prove that I have 41 votes (maybe I only have 28), but YOU have to prove that you have 60 -- and no one who is holding up the works ever has to have their name spoken in the same breath with obstruction

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 04:11 PM

30. We'll see when the vote comes up.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 04:52 PM

33. Weaken? It should read, "no longer grossly abused". nt

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 05:30 PM

34. McConnell is a jerkoff

It's about time he was neutered.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 05:37 PM

35. Hope So!!!!

Enough of the playing around that the R's do. They would be in deep trouble money wise if they only got
paid for what they do. Which is nada!!

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 06:46 PM

37. Then do it! And let's get this show on the road!


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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 06:51 PM

38. I don't even get why they allow it

Just end it, fillibuster has stopped serious progress. Look when a party wins an election it is because the people have chosen those ideas for the country, it is not like 20 years ago and more when people really didn't have a good idea of what was going on and Repubs could lie and get away with it, because information was often biased and filtered slowly. Today the internet and multimedia allow fast transition of information, everyone knows everything that is going on, the country voted to follow a Democratic President and Democratic Senate so let them lead, sure Repubs can debate however they want they can stand against anything and go on the record and make it known why they are against whatever but they should not be allowed to obstruct. If America doesn't like something that the ruling party does then I am sure America will rightfully let them know about it via elections... but until that happens the Repubs need to sit down and shut up or as I used to hollar to my kids, be quite and color.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 10:14 PM

44. What are ya waiting for Harry.

I'm waiting............

-p

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 10:19 PM

45. It's Fitzmas all over again!!11



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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 10:28 PM

46. Harry is full of shit, as usual.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Wed Jan 23, 2013, 11:32 PM

47. Called Senator Boxer and left a message asking her to support the "Talking" filibuster proposal.

Tried calling Senator Feinstein, but wasn't able to leave a message. The recording suggested that I call her California office. Sent both of them emails as well.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 06:51 AM

50. Reid is weak

 

Im so sick of this guy

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Response to BigD_95 (Reply #50)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 09:03 AM

51. Sec. Clinton could lend him some "balls" she know how to stand up to the right

I only wish that Reid had half the ball that Sec. Clinton has

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 09:10 AM

52. Dear Harry. Anything weaker than what you have the votes for is trivial, and our problems aren't

You need to arm twist the votes for forcing a talking fillibuster as the Democratic proposal. Shifting the responsibility onto the minoirity to produce 41 no votes can be your olive branch offer to McConnell if compromise is that important to you. Anything less than that is an insult to every voter who has been promised real reform.

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 10:36 AM

53. Harry Reid declares 'just kidding'. nt

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 09:48 PM

56. All Over Now. 4 More Years Of The Last 4 Years.

How bad are the DC "Democrats" willing to lose in 2014/16 ??

1 Party, 2 Faces

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Response to UrbScotty (Original post)

Fri Jan 25, 2013, 08:28 AM

57. Well that turned out to be a complete crock. nt

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