Friday, December 31, 2010

Government: Senate's Returning Democrats Unanimously Favor Filibuster Reform

Among the chief revisions that Democrats say will likely be offered: Senators could not initiate a filibuster of a bill before it reaches the floor unless they first muster 40 votes for it, and they would have to remain on the floor to sustain it. That is a change from current rules, which require the majority leader to file a cloture motion to overcome an anonymous objection to a motion to proceed, and then wait 30 hours for a vote on it.

There need to be changes to the rules to allow filibusters to be conducted by people who actually want to block legislation instead of people being able to quietly say ‘I object' and go home, said Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo.

Hopefully that gives [Reid] the juice he needs to negotiate reasonable changes so we can stop the abuses next year, McCaskill said.

Merkley said on Tuesday it was too early to tell what proposal Democrats will ultimately push because talks, including conversations between the Democrats and Republican leadership continue.

For more, see Senate's Returning Democrats Unanimously Favor Filibuster Reform by Dan Friedman, December 22, 2010 at National Journal Magazine.

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