Here’s what happened with the Senate yesterday:
The 50 Democrats in the Senate who voted to debate the For The People Act represent 43 million more Americans than the 50 GOP senators who oppose it. Which of course means that a mere 41 Republicans —who represent a only 21% of the country— blocked the bill that 68% of the country supports.
Sen. Joe Manchin cosponsored a measure in 2011 that would eliminate the filibuster on motions to proceed to debate, so maybe Ol’ Joe will take this opportunity to revisit that?
Senate Republicans banded together Tuesday to block a sweeping Democratic bill that would revamp the architecture of American democracy, dealing a grave blow to efforts to federally override dozens of GOP-passed state voting laws. The test vote, which would have cleared the way to start debate on voting legislation, failed 50-50 on straight party lines—10 votes short of the supermajority needed to advance legislation in the Senate.… While many Democrats and liberal activists insist the fight is not over—pledging to launch a final, furious push over the coming weeks to change the Senate’s rules to pass the bill—they face long odds as key lawmakers have insisted they are not willing to eliminate the chamber’s supermajority rule to override Republican opposition.
[Mitch] McConnell and other Republicans have taken aim at numerous provisions in the Democratic legislation, including a proposal to publicly finance congressional campaigns, potential new disclosure requirements for political donors, and a realignment of the Federal Election Commission meant to break partisan gridlock in enforcing election laws. And they have maintained their solid opposition to the ballot-access provisions in the Democratic bill—such as a guaranteed period of early voting, mandatory no-excuse mail voting, and a broad new automatic voter registration system—by arguing that the federal government simply has no role in dictating state election laws.
The bottom line is that nothing is going to get through the Senate unless the filibuster is taken down; not any infrastructure bill, not any voting rights bill, nothing. The Biden Agenda is dead and Mitch McConnell and his wrecking crew will campaign on it. Their strategy is pretty naked: block everything, run out the clock, elect Republicans to continue sacking and pillaging the Treasury.
As we’ve noted before, the Senate (and the Electoral College) are the most anti-democratic (little dee) institutions in the country. The Senate serves no real function, the rules that govern it are arbitrary and not defined anywhere in the Constitution. Amply be-chinned Russian asset Mitch McConnell is still running the show from a minority power position.