image: john kerry

VIDEO: McConnell Filibusters His Own Bill?

Yesterday in the Senate, GOP Senate Leader Mitch McConnell proposed making his own solution to last year’s debt ceiling impasse permanent.

Senator Reid was about to put McConnell’s proposal up for a vote, when another Senator objected to the motion to proceed, so that it would require 60 votes, not 51 to pass.

Which Senator, you might ask? None other than Mitch McConnell. The Senator filibustered his own bill–I guess there’s a first time for everything.

Sen. McConnell argued that his own proposal didn’t deserve a simple up-or-down vote, claiming that “matters of this controversy always require 60 votes.” That’s just not true–as Common Cause’s Stephen Spaulding told Melissa Harris-Perry last weekend, the Framers considered requiring a supermajority on all votes, but decided against it.

Alexander Hamilton said in Federalist 22:

The necessity of unanimity in public bodies, or of something approaching towards it, has been founded upon a supposition that it would contribute to security. But its real operation is to embarrass the administration, to destroy the energy of government, and to substitute the pleasure, caprice, or artifices of an insignificant, turbulent, or corrupt junto, to the regular deliberations of a respectable majority.

That’s exactly what’s happening today. The Senate is unable to move forward on legislation, and the rules of the game have become so twisted that we can’t get anything done–it’s time for a change.

Common Cause’s lawsuit to stop the unconstitutional filibuster abuse has its first hearing next Monday, December 10, and our Bob Edgar will be speaking alongside the other plantiffs afterwards.

Until then, let your Senators know that you want reform, and stay tuned to our website and our Fix The Filibuster page for the latest reform updates!

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