While it may seem a strange way to conduct business, the filibuster within the Senate has existed as a procedure since 1806. It originated seemingly accidentally as an unforeseen consequence of a simple rules change, and has in one form or another regulated the legislative process ever since.
It has a much longer history; the first recorded filibuster was by Cato in the Roman Senate, opposing one of Caesar’s proposals in 60 B.C. However, the weight of tradition alone is insufficient to maintain this tool; one of McConnell’s unlauded triumphs was its preservation in the rules of the present Congress by passive opposition to the transfer of Senate leadership until language defining and guaranteeing it was inserted into the agreement. Otherwise, it may have been ended immediately with the convening of the new Senate — and it may well be again in 2022.
What is for us to consider rather is whether this tool is valuable enough to preserve, or instead fully deserves to be discarded as a relic of a long-outmoded past.
With a nearly $2 trillion price tag, what is hopefully the last COVID-19 relief bill is up for debate in the Senate today — and, probably, tomorrow and the next and…
Due to the curious process under which it’s being considered — the Reconciliation rules — there’s no chance of a filibuster on the table; on the other hand, both the complexity of the proposed legislation and certain parliamentary tricks will create some fairly significant delays. These are normal (if petty) maneuvers; more to the point is considering the complexity of the bill proper.
Trump’s second impeachment is over in record time, and of course they didn’t convict him. They were never going to.
Some among you are disappointed, but what’s unsettling is that a few of you are actually surprised. You seem to have been under the misapprehension that this was a trial or something instead of the latest installment of the D.C. Bread And Circus Show (Hold The Bread).
(To be fair: I also thought it was a trial. My bad. -Editor)
On Monday, the second Trump impeachment trial in the Senate is scheduled to begin.
(I know; just when you thought he was finally gone, right? Wrong. Trump is back in the headlines for another few weeks — and it’s a good thing for everyone. But more on that later. -Editor)
In order to prepare for the upcoming outcomes of these events, there are a few aspects of the proceedings that you should be aware of going into this so you can adjust your expectations. That way, there are few surprises and there will be little room for disinformation going forward. The proper correction for fake news is, after all, a strong infusion of the truth.
No, not the Presidential race, though to be sure we’re still working through some of the process. Instead, let us consider the Senate: presently deadlocked at 50 Republicans and 48 Democrats, with a probable two seats up for runoff elections in Georgia.
Republicans don’t seem to have quite realized yet that the Democrats are probably going to win both seats.
The first major candidate to drop out of the Democratic Primaries, Senator Harris was nevertheless in the race long enough to eviscerate Uncle Joe in the debates and to get spanked by Tulsi in her own turn. Her fundraising was legendary but her polling was abysmal (particularly after the Gabbard debacle), and she dropped out not only before New Hampshire and Iowa but actually before 2020 — on the 3rd of December 2019, in fact, before even such notable losers as John Delaney and Marianne Williamson.
As a result, we never profiled here alongside the other candidates — a deficit we mean to make up for now. So who is she really, and what was she before? (more…)