Tag Archives: filibuster

Albert Mohler: A Revealing Week in the U.S. Senate

On Tuesday this week, the U.S. Senate failed to pass legislation that would protect the lives of children born alive, that would have prevented and made illegal infanticide after a botched abortion. It should be inconceivable that such an event would happen in the United States Senate, but it did happen.

It was both tragic and telling.

A bare majority—53 senators—voted in favor of the legislation, but 44 opposed it. Given the filibuster rules in the Senate, 60 votes were needed for the measure to proceed to the Senate floor for a full vote.

From time to time legislation—by virtue of the fact that it passes or fails to pass—offers something of a diagnostic test of the moral condition of the United States, of its people and its culture. Something like a moral MRI or CAT scan. What the scan revealed this week is chilling: What you see is the culture of death staring back at us ominously.

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Hugh Hewitt: Time to Extend the Reid-Rule Reforms

U.S. Senate

Whether the decline began with the sliming of Robert Bork or the segregationist filibusters of civil rights legislation, the modern U.S. Senate has been on a downward spiral for some time.

What the Senate needs now is an overhaul of its rules, one that preserves the rights of the minority in some cases—key legislation, for example, and perhaps appointments to the Supreme Court—while also reflecting the speed at which the world moves today. Simple majorities on appropriations and time limits on debate over minor nominees are two obvious reforms. They could be traded, for example, for agreement on the high court vacancies and how long those debates should last.

The Senate’s dysfunction is astonishing to Americans who have to make things actually run, who have to do their jobs to keep their jobs. Donald Trump has shrewdly taken aim at the Senate’s vulnerability as an issue. It would be best for both parties to head off change imposed from pressure from the outside with change organically orchestrated from within by those with care for the body and its original design.

It is time to extend what I call the “Reid-rule reforms,” and it’s time to do so now.

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