Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Hardkill

Should the filibuster be weakened or completely abolished?

10 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

Many people in this country, including myself, are getting very frustrated and worried that no new laws pertaining to Biden's agenda will get passed not only because of how much gridlock there is in the Senate, but also because Manchin and Sinema still don't want to weaken or eliminate the filibuster. Yesterday, the Senate Republicans filibustered Jan. 6 inquiry bill for an independent commission that would've investigated the Jan. 6 Capitol riot incident. Only 6 Republicans voted for the bill, which means that fell 4 votes short of the 60 senators needed to overcome the filibuster. The bill would've passed the Senate had Manchin and Sinema voted along the rest of the entire Democratic caucus to eliminate it. Manchin's only response to this was putting out a video on his twitter feed stating how furious he is with all of the Senate Republicans who voted against it and yet he still wants the keep the filibuster intact and giving a typical BS politician kind of apology to everyone in America saying that "you deserve better and I am sorry..."

Also, by keeping filibuster the way it is, the For the People Act bill, which would significantly improve voting rights throughout the country, will not be enacted. Manchin isn't even for the bill because he instead is propose for a watered down version of the bill that he claimed would've gotten enough bipartisanship support for it within the senate. Yet, only a couple of Republican senators are inclined to vote for Manchin's proposal. 

Furthermore, Chris Cuomo recently called out Manchin for wanting to keep the filibuster and saying how very concerned he is about the possibility that nothing will really get done for Biden's agenda because of the fact that nation has become more politically divided than ever, the Senate Republicans have become way to oppositional, and  Manchin himself is too obstinate to vote for weakening or eliminating the filibuster:

 

Edited by Hardkill

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am surprised that no one has responded to this given how dire this matter has become for the US.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As unbelievable as this sounds, the government is supposed to be much more objective and less partisan.  You see the corruption of causes throughout the entire government.

The supreme court is just one example of how when voting to confirm a justice, it is almost completely split on party lines.  This is not productive and it is a failure to uphold the constitution every time this happens.

As for the filibuster, I will first discuss arguments for keeping it.  American politics is becoming increasingly polarized.  If a minority does not have the ability to block bills, then radical changes from one party could be harmful.  Supposing one party had a majority, they could pass any bill uncontested if it were 51-49.  The filibuster is thus designed to maintain the status quo, serving as a safety net when both sides are radicalized.

the problem with these arguments is that currently it is not about policy, it is about partisanship.  As you are seeing right now, republicans are using the filibuster to restrict voting rights.  The Republican party would be in a lot of trouble if more people could vote.  This is why they must abuse every power and privilege they have to maintain power.

Weakening the filibuster by requiring only 55 would make it harder to abuse this safety net to restrict voting rights.  Considering that there is a reason to have this in place, it might be smart to keep it to ensure that a very close policy does not pass uncontested.  60-40 is very hard to get with how polarized we are.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, trenton said:

As unbelievable as this sounds, the government is supposed to be much more objective and less partisan.  You see the corruption of causes throughout the entire government.

The supreme court is just one example of how when voting to confirm a justice, it is almost completely split on party lines.  This is not productive and it is a failure to uphold the constitution every time this happens.

As for the filibuster, I will first discuss arguments for keeping it.  American politics is becoming increasingly polarized.  If a minority does not have the ability to block bills, then radical changes from one party could be harmful.  Supposing one party had a majority, they could pass any bill uncontested if it were 51-49.  The filibuster is thus designed to maintain the status quo, serving as a safety net when both sides are radicalized.

the problem with these arguments is that currently it is not about policy, it is about partisanship.  As you are seeing right now, republicans are using the filibuster to restrict voting rights.  The Republican party would be in a lot of trouble if more people could vote.  This is why they must abuse every power and privilege they have to maintain power.

Weakening the filibuster by requiring only 55 would make it harder to abuse this safety net to restrict voting rights.  Considering that there is a reason to have this in place, it might be smart to keep it to ensure that a very close policy does not pass uncontested.  60-40 is very hard to get with how polarized we are.

I get what you're saying and I agree with most of what you said, but how will anything ever get done these days if we keep the filibuster the way it is?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I certainly like the idea of winning an election and actually having it mean something, I get that the filibuster is meant to stop the tyranny of the majority but these days it’s not even tyranny because it’s like 60-70% popular approval of bill likes voting rights universal background checks and other things. If Republicans got into power it would suck having them being able to pass their agenda but I’d take it because they won’t the election. I like elections having consequences either good or bad depending on your beliefs and I like change happening. Ultimately the filibuster may be outdated for the current political climate just as I think the electoral college is, conservatives have many sneaky ways of holding on to power and this is one of them

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Hardkill said:

I get what you're saying and I agree with most of what you said, but how will anything ever get done these days if we keep the filibuster the way it is?

I did further research on this and found that the least populated 21 states have 41 senators.  These states represent 11 percent of the population.  In this case 11 percent can halt the progress of 89 percent. 

Here is an article arguing in favor of removing it.  It argues that the filibuster was abused to delay the civil rights act of 1957.

https://www.gwhatchet.com/2020/08/23/the-filibuster-is-a-threat-to-democracy-and-should-be-eliminated/#:~:text=But the filibuster needs to be eliminated in,stand in the way of action is harmful.

If we keep the filibuster in a way that requires a 60-40 super majority, then realistically neither side can get anything done.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/31/2021 at 10:13 PM, Gidiot said:

I certainly like the idea of winning an election and actually having it mean something, I get that the filibuster is meant to stop the tyranny of the majority but these days it’s not even tyranny because it’s like 60-70% popular approval of bill likes voting rights universal background checks and other things. If Republicans got into power it would suck having them being able to pass their agenda but I’d take it because they won’t the election. I like elections having consequences either good or bad depending on your beliefs and I like change happening. Ultimately the filibuster may be outdated for the current political climate just as I think the electoral college is, conservatives have many sneaky ways of holding on to power and this is one of them

 

On 6/1/2021 at 3:37 AM, trenton said:

I did further research on this and found that the least populated 21 states have 41 senators.  These states represent 11 percent of the population.  In this case 11 percent can halt the progress of 89 percent. 

Here is an article arguing in favor of removing it.  It argues that the filibuster was abused to delay the civil rights act of 1957.

https://www.gwhatchet.com/2020/08/23/the-filibuster-is-a-threat-to-democracy-and-should-be-eliminated/#:~:text=But the filibuster needs to be eliminated in,stand in the way of action is harmful.

If we keep the filibuster in a way that requires a 60-40 super majority, then realistically neither side can get anything done.  

Yeah, I agree with you guys.

You know, sometimes I am not proud of being American. The US is supposed to be the number one country in the world that represent the best kind of freedom, justice, and equality in the world. Yet, our level of democracy is not as good as the other westernized countries including Canada, UK, Ireland, the Scandanavian countries, Germany, Austria, Australia, New Zealand, etc. It's truly a sorry sight.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Hardkill maybe you are not proud of America in practice, but you do have American values even though they are not normally upheld by the government.  If you want something to be proud of something it could be the continued struggle to allow freedom, justice, and equality to flourish.  You may be one of those who have The American spirit that shows us how this country was intended to be.  This way you think of American as the ideal rather than your location of birth.

The shortened version of the pledge of allegiance is

 "I pledge allegiance to liberty and justice for all."

 You could say this is what it means to be an American and you could be proud of it.  It is not allegiance to the flag, but rather the idea.

As for other nations you can compare them with the corruption index.  American corporations have too much power over the American government and it makes the country more corrupt then other westernized countries like the ones you mentioned.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

I'd argue that a minority of obstructionist Legislators (representing perhaps a quarter or a third of the country) being able to obstruct the will of the entire Country is actually far worse than a majority of Senators being able to pass whatever they want with a simple 51 to 49 vote. 

The filibuster is flagrantly anti-democratic. It's simply a Senatorial rule, not something to be found in the Constitution.

In theory our system is supposed function so that the other two branches of Government serve as a check on Legislative power and Senatorial overreach. The President could Veto said Bill, or one of the Courts could strike it down as Unconstitutional.

Obviously the System is not working as intended, but the Irony is that removal or modification of the Filibuster is completely necessary to address the numerous ways in which our system is undemocratic and dysfunctional. That will never happen if 40 Senators representing far less than %40 of the population (due to Senate seats not being proportional to population like in the House) can obstruct democratic reforms.

Edited by DocWatts

"The mind is inherently embodied.
Thought is mostly unconscious.
Abstract concepts are largely metaphorical." - George Lakoff

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, DocWatts said:

I'd argue that a minority of obstructionist Legislators (representing perhaps a quarter or a third of the country) being able to obstruct the will of the entire Country is actually far worse than a majority of Senators being able to pass whatever they want with a simple 51 to 49 vote. 

The filibuster is flagrantly anti-democratic. It's simply a Senatorial rule, not something to be found in the Constitution.

In theory our system is supposed function so that the other two branches of Government serve as a check on Legislative power and Senatorial overreach. The President could Veto said Bill, or one of the Courts could strike it down as Unconstitutional.

Obviously the System is not working as intended, but the Irony is that removal or modification of the Filibuster is completely necessary to address the numerous ways in which our system is undemocratic and dysfunctional. That will never happen if 40 Senators representing far less than %40 of the population (due to Senate seats not being proportional to population like in the House) can obstruct democratic reforms.

Yeah, it's a national tragedy.

I know that Leo says that it's only a matter of time before we become more democratic like the UK, Ireland, Scandanavian, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Austria, etc. He also is still optimistic about the US becoming more of a developed healthy Stage Green society like those same above mentioned countries. I want to believe that he is very likely right. However, I honestly don't see how this is ever going to happen for US considering that it seems that our country has now reached a point where we are now in this terrible perpetual political deadlock that we may never get out of until the end of time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0