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Thu Feb 14, 2013, 06:59 PM

Have the Republicans played right into Harry Reid's hands?

Harry Reid has been taking enormous heat for not making any major reforms to the filibuster rules a few weeks ago when he had the chance. However, there may be more going on here than we thought.

Sen. Reid, his mild manner notwithstanding, is very wily and strategic. It's very possible that he realized that there would be a backlash if the Senate Dems pushed back on the filibuster a few weeks ago, so he kept his powder dry knowing that the Republicans would, as usual, go too far and, thus, make it clear to the American public that something has to be done. The groundwork is now clearly laid.

I'm going to wait and see what Reid and the other Dems do in the next few weeks. If they respond to this filibuster as they should and take action to reform the filibuster rules, we'll see that Reid was way ahead of the game.

If not, I'll just be wrong.

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Arrow 39 replies Author Time Post
Reply Have the Republicans played right into Harry Reid's hands? (Original post)
Empowerer Feb 2013 OP
TwilightGardener Feb 2013 #1
Empowerer Feb 2013 #3
davidpdx Feb 2013 #36
Hard Assets Feb 2013 #2
earthside Feb 2013 #8
Tx4obama Feb 2013 #4
davidpdx Feb 2013 #34
wryter2000 Feb 2013 #5
Empowerer Feb 2013 #37
annabanana Feb 2013 #6
HooptieWagon Feb 2013 #21
unblock Feb 2013 #27
davidpdx Feb 2013 #35
annabanana Feb 2013 #38
unblock Feb 2013 #39
NV Whino Feb 2013 #7
lamp_shade Feb 2013 #9
rateyes Feb 2013 #10
Cleita Feb 2013 #13
pscot Feb 2013 #16
rateyes Feb 2013 #17
Leeds Devil Feb 2013 #32
elleng Feb 2013 #11
freckleface Feb 2013 #12
Autumn Feb 2013 #14
ThoughtCriminal Feb 2013 #15
bvar22 Feb 2013 #18
Proud Liberal Dem Feb 2013 #19
donco Feb 2013 #20
former9thward Feb 2013 #22
Empowerer Feb 2013 #24
former9thward Feb 2013 #26
BlueStreak Feb 2013 #29
former9thward Feb 2013 #30
BlueStreak Feb 2013 #31
MrSlayer Feb 2013 #23
madinmaryland Feb 2013 #25
unblock Feb 2013 #28
blkmusclmachine Feb 2013 #33

Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:01 PM

1. I don't know. But Dems should save their ire for the GOP right now. I think they lied several

times over on whether they would filibuster--they are playing games.

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Response to TwilightGardener (Reply #1)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:02 PM

3. I agree

Much of the anger being directed at Sen Reid needs to be turned on those who are actually doing the dirt.

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Response to Empowerer (Reply #3)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 09:46 AM

36. I think more of the anger needs to be directed at the 7 spineless Ds that wouldn't back the reform

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:02 PM

2. I do not think so.

 

I thinK Reid needs to invoke the nuclear option, declaring that the "gentlemen agreement" has been irreversibly broken, and declare the Republicans hostile to American interest, and get the business done, passing meaningful legislation and putting in the people that is needed in place to remove the Republicans in 2014, starting with voter education, and showing what the Republicans has been doing and what Obama has done for them.

If they are gun nuts, ask them if Obama has taken away their guns yet. Ask them why not. And what will it become? Get these old noggin thinking!

The only problem is that we have the House to deal with. Which is still full of idiots that couldn't think their own way out of a paper bag.

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Response to Hard Assets (Reply #2)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:06 PM

8. The House will be pressured ...

... is my theory.

If the filibuster is reformed and the Senate passes and sends over to the House bill after bill after bill, then I think Boehner is going to finally feel the pressure to let there be votes in the House.

The filibuster deadlock now gives Boehner an excuse not to do anything unless it is clear that there is 60 votes in the Senate.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:03 PM

4. Yes, I agree. Filibuster reform will be easier now to get all the dems to vote yes next time. n/t

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Response to Tx4obama (Reply #4)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 09:36 AM

34. Next time when?

My understanding it has to be done on the first day. When is the next time it can be voted on?

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:04 PM

5. I hope you're right

I doubt it, though. What can they do at this point? Besides, what more evidence did the country have to see?

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Response to wryter2000 (Reply #5)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 09:56 AM

37. Folks out in the real world need a lot of evidence. They are not as immersed in this as you may be.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:04 PM

6. Having missed the "first day" when a simple majority was all

Last edited Thu Feb 14, 2013, 09:35 PM - Edit history (1)

that was required to reform the filibuster rules, any change they try to make now will be, (you guessed it) filibustered.

I think he'd have a hard time getting 60 votes for a change.

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Response to annabanana (Reply #6)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 09:32 PM

21. Exactly. It needed to be done on day 1, when only a simple majority was needed.

Instead, Harry got a promise from the children they wouldn't block nominations if the Dems wouldn't modify filibuster rules. Their promise lasted about 3 weeks. Their word is no good, they simply can't be trusted. Time for recesd appointments and nuclear options. And Obama needs to take Harry to the woodshed for fucking up so royally.

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Response to annabanana (Reply #6)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:22 PM

27. that's not necessarily the case. the "nuclear option" only requires 51 votes.

my understanding is that this can happen at any time. basically, that's would be the democratic majority disputes the rules and reid finds for the democrats (even if in flagrant contradiction to the written rules, e.g., that 60 votes are actually required for cloture). republicans object, but the dispute is resolved by simple majority vote.

it's less palatable to do this after the first day because it involves some overtly slimy actions (disputing a very clear-cut rule and "finding" in favor of the obviously "wrong" position) but the senate makes its own rules and resolves them themselves, so republicans have no recourse.

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Response to unblock (Reply #27)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 09:39 AM

35. I don't see it working that simply

The ship has sailed and we are SOL until the next congress convenes.

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Response to unblock (Reply #27)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 11:10 AM

38. What's the technical term for the "nuclear option"?

So I know when it's being discussed politely..

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Response to annabanana (Reply #38)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 01:18 PM

39. some call it the "constitutional option"

other distinguish, with the constitutional option reserved for changing the rules on the "first day" of a new congress and the nuclear option for any other day; others simply use the term "nuclear option" for drama and/or opposition.

here's a summary of the process:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_option

A point of order is a parliamentary motion used to remind the body of its written rules and established precedents, usually when a particular rule or precedent is not being followed. When a senator raises a point of order, the presiding officer of the Senate immediately rules on the validity of the point of order, but this ruling may be appealed and reversed by the whole Senate. Ordinarily, a point of order compels the Senate to follow its rules and precedents; however, the Senate may choose to vote down the point of order. When this occurs, a new precedent is established, and the old rule or precedent no longer governs Senate procedure. Similarly, it is possible to raise a point of order and state that the standard procedure of the Senate is actually different than the current rules and precedents suggest. If this point of order is sustained, a new precedent is established, and it controls Senate procedure thenceforth.

The nuclear option is a potential response to a filibuster or other dilatory tactic. A senator makes a point of order calling for an immediate vote on the measure before the body, outlining what circumstances allow for this. The presiding officer of the Senate, usually the vice president of the United States or the president pro tempore, makes a parliamentary ruling upholding the senator's point of order. The Constitution is cited at this point, since otherwise the presiding officer is bound by precedent. A supporter of the filibuster may challenge the ruling by asking, "Is the decision of the Chair to stand as the judgment of the Senate?" This is referred to as "appealing from the Chair." An opponent of the filibuster will then move to table the appeal. As tabling is non-debatable, a vote is held immediately. A simple majority decides the issue. If the appeal is successfully tabled, then the presiding officer's ruling that the filibuster is unconstitutional is thereby upheld. Thus a simple majority is able to cut off debate, and the Senate moves to a vote on the substantive issue under consideration. The effect of the nuclear option is not limited to the single question under consideration, as it would be in a cloture vote. Rather, the nuclear option effects a change in the operational rules of the Senate, so that the filibuster or dilatory tactic would thereafter be barred by the new precedent.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:04 PM

7. Reid's not that smart

If it works in our favor, it will be strictly accidental.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:13 PM

9. Exactly right. Did you notice how quickly the President responded? Think he and Harry had a plan?

I do. And you're right about Harry being wily and strategic.... and very, very smart. Stay tuned.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:14 PM

10. Harry wasnt keeping powder dry. He was doing exactly what he wanted to keep the

progressive agenda from being enacted. He is a liar and a coward.

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Response to rateyes (Reply #10)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:17 PM

13. I kind of can't help agreeing with you.

I don't believe Harry is alone. We have a very right wing government right now on both sides of the aisle. Our centrists and progressive are too few to be able to make any noise about it.

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Response to rateyes (Reply #10)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:29 PM

16. Occams razor

Why make up complicated explanations when the truth is staring us in the face.

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Response to pscot (Reply #16)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:30 PM

17. bingo

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Response to rateyes (Reply #10)


Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:16 PM

11. I don't think they CAN change the rules now.

Have to wait until the NEXT Congress, unfortunately.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:16 PM

12. Dream on...would that it were true! n/t

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:18 PM

14. Another form of chess is it?

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:26 PM

15. To find powder this dry...

one would have to move to Arrakis.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:31 PM

18. Isn't the window to reform Senate Rules closed?

I thought that had to be done before the actual session started.

Unless I'm mistaken, all they can do now is cry.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 07:47 PM

19. Don't you know

Reid and other Democrats are working with Republicans to make sure nothing gets done for the rest of us?!!

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 09:25 PM

20. Harry Reid!

implementing a rope a dope?Hardly...even if he is a ex-boxer.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 09:41 PM

22. You are wrong on this.

The Senate rules can only be changed on the first business day of the Senate. That has come and gone. Rules can't be considered again until Jan.,2015 when a new Senate convenes.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #22)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:08 PM

24. There are other ways to do this - that are not limited to the first business day...

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Response to Empowerer (Reply #24)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:22 PM

26. It takes 67 votes to change a Senate rule.

After the first business day. So any changes would require R support.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #26)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:38 PM

29. Unless you are a Republican. In 2005, Bill Frist threated to do that MID-SESSION with 51 votes

And he had the audacity to refer to that as "the Constitutional option" even though the Constitution clear says that the rules must be set at the beginning of the Senate term.

Basically he was going to change the rules arbitrarily and dare somebody to challenge him. This is why it is more accurate to refer to that as "the nuclear option" because it would depart radically from both precedent and the explicit language in the Constitution.

Here is some of that background
http://mydd.com/users/cicero/posts/the-quotnuclear-optionquot-bill-frist-ready-to-end-the-filibuster

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Response to BlueStreak (Reply #29)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:48 PM

30. Thanks and what you are saying is true but ...

in the Frist situation the so-called gang of 14 stopped that threat. Bottom line I think the Senate is such an old boys club that the only real chance at changing rules is at the beginning of the session.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #30)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 01:06 AM

31. Yes, but it was under threat of "the nuclear option", which was illegal

Frist didn't care. Maybe he was bluffing, but he said he would go through with changing the rules on a simple majority, even though such a thing is illegal. He was effectively daring the Dems to sue him in SCOTUS, and given what happened in 2000, he probably figured Scalia and company would find some way to back him up.

And of course, he knew the Dems were always invertebrates, so it would never have to go that far. They would cave. They always cave.

No way Reid would do the same thing. He's a Democrat, after all. I.E. No backbone. And he also knows that if it got to the SCOTUS, they would slap him down..

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 10:31 PM

23. Just how long are we going to keep up this charade?

 

Reid isn't keeping his powder dry to trick the Republicans. If the past four years haven't convinced the People that the Republicans are anti-everything, letting them do more of the same won't.

Harry Reid is doing just as he is told by the people that own him, the people that own everyfuckingthing. Besides, the filibuster reform should have happened in 2009, when it could have made a difference.

Remember 2009? Yeah, we had overwhelming majorities in both houses and then did everything possible to avoid doing anything that would upset the owners.

We need to stop pretending our party isn't as bought out as the Republicans. They are and they aren't really trying to hide it anymore.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:15 PM

25. No. His powder will always be dry, and he will keep getting abused by the repukes. nt

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:26 PM

28. it's not clear (yet) that the deal has failed. republicans appear to be backing away from filibuster

it's starting to sound like they'll let the cloture vote success next week.

reid's goal was to prevent the anonymous holds from letting republicans filibuster anonymously. he succeeded in that all the obstructionist republicans had to go on record opposing cloture, and it's starting to look like they can't sustain that position for very long. if this becomes the pattern, than reid's deal will prove largely successful after all.

at the moment, though, republicans certainly aren't co-operating, unsurprisingly. let's see how this plays out.

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Response to Empowerer (Original post)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 05:42 AM

33. Win by losing.

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