Sunday, January 27, 2013

McConnell On Filibuster Cave: "We Beat The Liberals"

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's (D-NV) capitulation on filibuster reform was galling enough, as it left the Republicans with the ability to force a 60-vote supermajority to advance bills. To add to the wound, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) crowed about the deal in a fundraising email entitled, "We Beat the Liberals." According to McConnell, the supermajority is a normal part of Senate "checks and balances" and a "simple majority" is to be resisted. Regardless of minor tweaks to filibuster rules, GOP obstructionism and Congressional gridlock will continue:

The Kentucky Republican’s 2014 re-election campaign fired off a fundraising email to supporters after the finalization of the bipartisan rules change agreement, which passed Thursday night. The agreement negotiated by McConnell and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) leaves the 60-vote threshold intact but speeds up the legislating process.

The email, subject line “We Beat the Liberals,” bragged that President Obama was “furious” after liberal senators and left-wing groups failed to pass their “dangerous scheme” to break down the checks and balances in the Senate.

“You see, they had been pushing a plan to end the filibuster, allowing Harry Reid and the Obama Democrats to pass their agenda with a simple majority,” wrote Jesse Benton, McConnell’s campaign manager. “Well, Mitch McConnell stood strong and stopped that scheme dead in its tracks.”

...“[B]ottom line,” Benton declared, “Mitch McConnell saved the ability of Republicans to filibuster any bill at 60 votes. Period. … We all owe Leader McConnell a debt of gratitude today. We won the first battle. But there will be many more to come.”

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