Now that Barack Obama has been re-elected and the Democratic Party holds sway in the Senate – again – unions and leftist groups are calling for filibuster reform. Reform’s the wrong word for it, actually: they’re calling for an end to filibustering as a tool of negotiation.
The newly-created Fix The Senate Now coalition, comprised of a series of liberal groups including the United Auto Workers, Common Cause, and the Sierra Club, is calling for Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) to ram through an end to minority party filibustering:
Facing unparalleled challenges–a languid economic recovery, crushing debt, and threats at home and abroad–the country cannot afford another two years of inaction fostered by outmoded and broken legislative institutions. In recent decades, Senate conventions have devolved to remove incentives for bipartisan comity, collegiality, and compromise. Whereas Senators once resorted to filibustering only in rare and exceptional instances of intense opposition, rampant obstruction has now transformed standard operating procedure.
Of course, these groups had no problem when the Democrats routinely filibustered President Bush’s judicial nominees. Then, it was just a tool to help compromise take place. But now, filibustering must be stopped at all costs.
Just another day in Democratic hypocrisy.