Tags: McConnell | Democrats | Rule | Gimmicks

McConnell: Dems Should Avoid Rule Gimmicks

Wednesday, 05 Jan 2011 10:23 AM

Any Democratic attempt to seek ways to reduce filibuster threats will only come back to haunt them, according to Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell. In an Op-Ed piece Wednesday in The Washington Post, McConnell wrote that “any rule change aimed at making it easier for one party to force legislation through the Senate with only a slim partisan majority would undermine the Senate's unique role as a moderating influence and put a permanent end to bipartisanship.”

mcconnell, rule, change, gimmicksPartisan rule changes aimed at “empowering the majority at the expense of the minority” is a “well-worn myth,” McConnell wrote. “Over the past four years, Democrats have used such gimmicks to pursue their most prized legislative goals while attempting to minimize the number of uncomfortable votes they've had to take.”

McConnell believes that “a change in the rules by a bare majority aimed at benefiting Democrats today could just as easily be used to benefit Republicans tomorrow. Do Democrats really want to create a situation where, two or four or six years from now, they are suddenly powerless to prevent Republicans from overturning legislation they themselves worked so hard to enact?”

Democrats pushing for changes to the filibuster must have forgotten how it was used to block legislation when Republicans were in the majority, McConnell wrote, adding that, “given the ease with which majorities can shift these days, Democrats might want to be careful what they wish for.”

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