Monday, October 12, 2015

Go for it

I hate the filibuster when the GOP controlled the Senate, kept hoping that Harry Reid nuke it, and was overjoyed when he did so for most confirmation votes. The argument against the filibuster that people like me made back then--that the constitution says it takes a majority vote for the Senate to pass something and the filibuster effectively changed that to a super-majority 60% threshold--still makes just as much sense when the Republicans are in control as it does when Democrats are. So even though limiting or ending the filibuster would take away some of my party's ability to stop the crazy shit the GOP keeps coming up with, I'm still for doing it.

That's the logical argument. If you want a political argument, O Democratic partisans, try this: Obama is still in the White House. Even if the Senate can pass crazy shit, the President will veto it and it won't become law. The Republicans don't have enough votes to override the veto, so it won't mean more crazy-ass legislation becoming law under the current political landscape. Plus, that landscape is about to change! Similar electoral math that made it easy for the GOP to get a Senate majority in 2014, heavily favors a switch back to the Dems next year. Demographic reality also gives the Dems a high probability of holding on to the Presidency. The Republicans will still have the House, so legislating still won't happen very much, but the less filibuster we have, the more powerful the Democrats' new Senate majority will be. So any benefit the Republicans will get from weakening the filibuster will probably only last for another year (during which time Obama will still have the veto). So even on a purely political level, a weakened (or even eliminated) filibuster is better for my team over the next three years than the status quo.