Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Very Temporary Filibuster

The amusing part about arguments like this one, in the comments thread of one of Yglesias' posts, is that you have so many Dems arguing that the filibuster is respected "out of respect for the institution", and that it means that "you just need sixty votes to pass a bill, face it".

They never admit that this wasn't the case under the Republicans. The Republicans pushed hard against the filibuster all the time, and didn't let the Dems get away with implying that you "need sixty to pass." It has only been the case since the Dems took control.

They also never stop to consider that it will stop being the case if the Republicans take over again. They either will not, or cannot, admit that the Republicans will come down on the filibuster like a ton of bricks. The "sixty to pass" rule will once again become "Democratic obstructionism", the Republicans will once again blame Democrats for not "reaching out" to pass Republican bills, and DINOs like Lieberman and Nelson will once again vote for cloture.

It's a mug's game. The Dems are suckers. They should NEVER stop hammering the Republicans day, after day, after day, NEVER letting up on the idea that the Republicans are abusing the filibuster. They should NEVER accept the idea that "you just need sixty to pass". They should NEVER let up on threats to go "nuclear", even if they don't plan to do it, just to keep the Republicans guessing.

But they'll do all of those things. Rank and file and Congress alike: suckers the lot of 'em.

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