Now we know this might come as a shock to you, Gentle Readers, but this is not our ol’ Bipartisan Joe. This is Joe2.0. He’s taking names (tho he’s not saying Hair Füror, we all know who he means):
But then the violent mob of January 6th, 2021, empowered and encouraged by a defeated former president, sought to win through violence what he had lost at the ballot box, to impose the will of the mob, to overturn a free and fair election, and, for the first time—the first time in American history, they—to stop the peaceful transfer of power.
Handsome Joe’s main reason to talk to Georgeduh seems to be to talk to one Senator in West Virginia and to another in Arizona:
You know, last year, if I’m not mistaken, the filibuster was used 154 times. The filibuster has been used to generate compromise in the past and promote some bipartisanship. But it’s also been used to obstruct—including and especially obstruct civil rights and voting rights.
And when it was used, senators traditionally used to have to stand and speak at their desks for however long it took, and sometimes it took hours. And when they sat down, if no one immediately stood up, anyone could call for a vote or the debate ended.
But that doesn’t happen today. Senators no longer even have to speak one word. The filibuster is not used by Republicans to bring the Senate together but to pull it further apart.
The filibuster has been weaponized and abused.
At the beginning of his term, President Biden was a fan of the Senate traditions, and I guess we can say all that has changed! But you don’t have to read much between the lines to see that Handsome Joe is giving Coal Lieberman a way out of the hole he has dug for himself (see what I did there?): change the rules to a talking filibuster. Manchin can save face and save the filibuster. Seems pretty slick.
Here is the operative quote:
“The next few days, when these bills come to a vote, will mark a turning point in this nation. Will we choose democracy over autocracy, light over shadow, justice over injustice? I know where I stand. I will not yield. I will not flinch. I will defend your right to vote and our democracy against all enemies foreign and domestic. And so the question is where will the institution of the United States Senate stand?”
And then the closer:
“I ask every elected official in America: Do you want to be on the side of Dr. King or George Wallace?” Biden said. “The side of John Lewis or Bull Connor? The side of Abraham Lincoln or Jefferson Davis?”
And that brings us to Chuck Schumer’s realistic assessment on Voting Rights legislation, which is due for a vote this week and which is dependent upon the dynamic dysfunction of the Senate, Manchinema machine:
“I don’t want to delude your listeners: This is an uphill fight, because Manchin and Sinema both do not believe in changing the rules.”
And this is a one-two punch setup, me peeps: Give Manchinema a way out, set-up a vote that is sure to fail and apply maximum national pressure on them for the next round. I don’t pretend to know if it will work, but at this point it is worth a try.
You can call the Senate Switchboard at at (202) 224-3121. A switchboard operator will connect you directly with the Senate office you request (Manchin or Sinema). Be polite to the poor staffer who answers the phone, it is not their fault their boss is an asshole.