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Tuesday, October 25, 2016

UPDATE: The rules change passed, 48 to 52. Majority Leader Reid passed the decisive 51st vote.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) announced on Thursday morning that he will “go nuclear” by changing the Senate rules to end filibusters of President Obama’s executive and judicial nominees, except for the Supreme Court.

The Republican minority has blocked the appointments of Robert Wilkins, Nina Pillard and Patricia Millett, all of the president’s appointments to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, from receiving an up-or-down vote.

All of President George W. Bush’s six appointments to the court — which has jurisdiction over much of the activity of the federal government — were approved by the upper house of Congress. Due to the court’s seniority system, its power is heavily tilted to Republican appointees.

Rather than allowing a vote on the three court vacancies , Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) called for the vacant seats to be removed from the court.

Reid listed a litany of obstruction by Republicans in the Senate, including the unprecedented attempt to use the requirement for 60 votes to eliminate a part of the executive branch, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the attempt to block a Republican nominee for the Secretary of Defense and the successful filibuster of a sitting member of the House of Representatives. More than half of the 168 filibusters in the history of the United States have happened during the Obama administration, he noted. In addition, 75 of Obama’s executive branch nominees are still waiting for confirmation—and they’ve been waiting for 140 days, on average.

Since the Constitution was ratified, 23 district court nominees have been filibustered — 20 of them were nominated by President Obama.

Senate Democrats used this chart to illustrate their point:


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Copyright 2013 The National Memo
  • elw

    I say stop them anyway you can. They have an agenda of destruction, so take their power away and put them in a corner where they belong. Good for Harry.

    • Michael Kollmorgen

      The Democrats wasted the first term of Obama. 4 years of obstruction from the Republicans. Should have been done long ago.

      Now, let’s see if the Democrats can hold together long enough to make our government actually work.

      • elw

        Right on, I have my fingers crossed.

  • Lynda Groom

    McConnell is trying to switch the subject from the reality of the Senate to the bad roll out of the health care web site. It is not going to work. When the ladies from California switched sides earlier this week Mitch should have started to keep some of his earlier promises. Unfortunately he’s already proven several times to be a dishonest broker. The GOP only has themselves to blame for this.

  • dana becker

    “You may regret this a lot sooner than you think,” he said. After another attempt to confirm Millett failed, McConnell suddenly adjourned the Senate until 5 PM Thursday, which was rejected by the majority of the Senate.”

    See it is working already.

  • sigrid28

    Along with many other Democrats, I’ve been waiting impatiently since January 1, 2013, for Harry Reid to call the vote that would release the president’s nominees in the Senate by changing the rules governing the use of the filibuster. Bravo!

  • Sand_Cat


  • Michael Kollmorgen

    It’s about time!

    But, this may also backfire on the Democrats.

    IF the Republicans get a majority next time around, it’ll be pay back time. Let’s make dam sure these Republicans never get a majority in either house again.

    If a Republican gets elected as President in 2016, the Democrats can screw him worse than what is currently being done to Obama, only this time, by just a simple majority:)

    Other than this, Pay Backs are a real MFer. And, Republicans fully deserve major pay backs.

    Now, let’s work on the state level to clean this mess up!

  • Igor Shafarevich

    Arguably, the regard for responsibility that thrives where people embrace liberty has fallen low enough to undermine the very freedom upon which our prosperity and civilization rest.