Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY) wrote in an op-ed for The Hill that in order to end partisan gridlock and pass critical voting rights legislation, the Senate filibuster must be eliminated. Rep. Maloney leads the House Democrats’ campaign arm and represents a swing district.
NBC News congressional reporter Julie Tsirkin reported that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) earlier today said:"100% of my focus is on stopping this new administration... 100% of my focus is on standing up to this administration."
The Hill reports that the Koch brothers-funded Americans for Prosperity organization is launching a new ad campaign in support of preserving the filibuster. It is no surprise that the Koch brothers and Senator Mitch McConnell are interested in preserving the ‘Jim Crow’ filibuster and wielding it to protect special interests and block critical progress on voting rights and democracy reforms included in the “For the People” Act” (S1).
Ahead of President Biden’s address to Congress tonight, media outlets are previewing the bold priorities he intends to outline in his speech. These include calls for Congress to pass gun violence legislation, immigration legislation with a path to citizenship for Dreamers, a push for drug price legislation to lower the cost of prescription drug prices, police reform legislation; and voting rights and democracy reform measures.
In a weekend interview with Medhi Hasan on MSNBC, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) asserted that his priority is delivering “big, bold change” as the “number one goal” for Democrats and reiterated that “we cannot fail” to pass S.1, the For the People Act: “failure is not an option. We cannot fail to pass S.1. And we will, we will.”
Today, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 51, the Washington, D.C. Admissions Act. Introduced by D.C.’s own non-voting Representative Eleanor Holmes Norton, the bill would make the District of Columbia a state, thereby ending the disenfranchisement of its residents and finally giving them voting representation in Congress.
President Biden’s legislative ambitions face a crucial test in the narrowly divided Congress this month, with key Democratic senators signaling they want to pump the brakes.
Once obscure, the Senate filibuster is coming under fresh scrutiny not only because of the enormous power it gives a single senator to halt President Joe Biden’s agenda, but as a tool historically used for racism.
Gun control groups are joining the progressive fight to end the filibuster as the Senate voting rule threatens their goal of passing comprehensive gun reform.
The filibuster is a procedural tool of the Senate that delays or prevents a piece of legislation from being brought to a vote. It is a vestige of a deal made to appeal to segregationists and has historically been used to block passage of civil rights legislation.