I don’t know what it will take for Sinema and Manchin to stop behaving like oblivious obstruction-enablers and recognize the filibuster for what it is and has always been– a tool of obstructionist racists, first slaveholders ably assisted by their public servant, and inventor of the Senate filibuster, John Calhoun, and later generations of Dixiecrat klansmen who used it to block all anti-lynching and civil rights legislation.
The filibuster does not encourage “bipartisanship” as these two asshats keep insisting. It promotes the opposite, particularly when one of the parties embraces the radical “alternate reality” of their enraged leader. As the filibuster is currently constituted, it allows one member of the minority party to block debate on anything not budget-related, with an email. Then it’s 60 votes or suck it if you want to discuss a bill on the Senate floor.
Here’s a point Schumer should make to those two holdouts, today — OK, you don’t want to abolish the filibuster, not ready to go there, fine. What’s your objection to changing the rule back to what it was just a few years ago — you stand up and talk and when you stop talking, if nobody else from your party immediately steps up, filibuster over? Why not put the burden back on the party filibustering, instead of the one trying to get on with normal Senate business?
And we add this second change to the filibuster rule — we’ve banned reading the phone book or Dr. Seuss, canceled Green Eggs AND ham, your standing, talking filibuster has to be speeches on the merits of your meritless objection.
Make those two changes to the filibuster rule and it’s game over for Mitch, Lindsey, Lyin’ Ted, Hawley, Ron Johnson from Wisconsin and their Big Lie embracing ilk. There is no merit to their positions on anything in the debate over voting rights, the violence of American policing, investigating the January 6 Trump riot, raising the minimum wage, doing everything that can be done to avoid climate catastrophe.
Their objections and obstructions are frequently based on demonstrable lies — as in the ridiculous and dangerous case of their now “peaceful” January 6 non-insurrection. The clown in Congress who recently dismissed the Capitol riot as a normal tourist event is on videotape screaming and crapping his pants as he frantically barricades the door against the peaceful MAGA tourists on that sunny January 6. Those 70 Capitol Police who’ve retired or quit since the peaceful riot? Faint-hearted alarmists who do not know a transformational lie when they see it.
I truly don’t get why that reasonable change to the out-of-control filibuster rules would even be an ask for Sinema or Manchin.
Then again, they don’t pay me the big bucks to suggest these kind of policy strategies. I hope this will be the issue that finally gets Democrats off their asses to pressure the two “moderate” holdouts to get the filibuster under control.
If not this issue — a bipartisan investigation to hold the lying propagandists and provocateurs responsible for the riot at the Capitol that stopped the certification of a fair election as members of Congress hid from the peaceful tourists (and later Kevin McCarthy announced that there’s no debate that Biden is the president), truly a matter of Superman’s “Truth, Justice and the American Way” — what issue would be important enough?
Manchin and Sinema could continue to enable Mitch and the slim minority to hold on to its unchecked ability to obstruct until one of the older member of the Democratic caucus finally has a debilitating stroke (as many of us often feel about to have when reading about Manchin and Sinema). Then, that day, hello Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and goodbye filibuster, motherfuckers!