It looks like President Joe Biden has also had enough of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-Ky.) obstruction because he is now in favor of changing filibuster rules.
On Tuesday, McConnell threw a temper tantrum on the Senate floor threatening to retaliate if Democrats change the filibuster, vowing that Republicans would adopt a “scorched earth” policy.
The filibuster currently requires 60 votes to pass most bills, meaning the 50 Democrats would need at least 10 Republican votes to pass anything, and that’s simply not going to happen because Republicans hate any piece of legislation that actually helps the country.
Democratic leaders are increasingly in favor of killing the filibuster entirely because Republicans never negotiate in good faith to reach real bipartisan compromise. It’s clear that Republicans will stand in the way of Biden’s legislative goals. And that’s why even he is calling for change.
“Aren’t you going to have to choose between preserving the filibuster, and advancing your agenda?” ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos asked in an interview set to air later this week.
“Yes, but here’s the choice: I don’t think that you have to eliminate the filibuster, you have to do it what it used to be when I first got to the Senate back in the old days,” Biden replied. “You had to stand up and command the floor, you had to keep talking.”
Indeed, a senator had to stand on the floor and talk— sometimes for hours— in order to filibuster a bill. Today, any senator can just send an email or make a phone call and say they are filibustering.
If senators have to literally stand and talk, Republicans will eventually run out of energy to filibuster and a vote can actually be held to pass a bill with a simple majority.
“So you’re for that reform? You’re for bringing back the talking filibuster?” Stephanopoulos asked.
“I am. That’s what it was supposed to be,” Biden said. “It’s getting to the point where, you know, democracy is having a hard time functioning.”
That’s an understatement. McConnell and the GOP are the reason why the Senate is functionally broken. They literally prevent Democrats from governing even though Democrats represent more Americans than Republicans do. Mitch McConnell should not get to have a veto in the Senate, especially since he’s in the minority. He refused to bring bills up for a vote as Majority Leader, he shouldn’t get to continue blocking bills as Minority Leader. He has even bragged about being the “Grim Reaper” of the Senate. It’s time to take his power away and start passing legislation that Americans overwhelmingly support and that this country needs.
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