The Pardu

The Pardu
Watchful eyes and ears feed the brain, thus nourishing the brain cells.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Reid Drops the "NUKE" Option


The United States Senate votes and passes the "nuclear option." Late in 2012, Senate Minority leadership convinced Harry Reid (D) Senate Majority leader to avoid and not being the nuclear option up for a vote. The conditions under which Reid agreed were clear. The filibuster would be enacted only in special cases and would cease to be a tool form the Right for Obama opposition. We read there was a 'gentleman's agreement' republicans would not declared a filibuster for each and every proposed piece of legislation and judicial nominations from the White House.

Many on the Left felt Reid was the victim of McConnell's political acumen and an unwitting and reluctant subject of GOP malfeasance.  It appears we hit the nail squarely on the head as the GOP never even put a crimp in their blanket opposition to "all things Obama.

Earlier today Huffington Post published the following article.


Senate Votes For Nuclear Option
Posted:   |  Updated: 11/21/2013 1:33 pm EST

C-SPAN Video

WASHINGTON -- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) pulled the trigger Thursday, deploying a parliamentary procedure dubbed the "nuclear option" to change Senate rules to pass most executive and judicial nominees by a simple majority vote. 
The Senate voted 52 to 48 for the move, with just three Democrats declining to go along with the rarely used maneuver. 
From now until the Senate passes a new rule, executive branch nominees and judges nominated for all courts except the Supreme Court will be able to pass off the floor and take their seats on the bench with the approval of a simple majority of senators. They will no longer have to jump the traditional hurdle of 60 votes, which has increasingly proven a barrier to confirmation during the Obama administration.
If you take a look at the following Facebook meme, you should get the picture.

As you know, if you visit here form time-to-time we will not leave a piece without dropping a bit of information. Some might be curious about the filibuster.

US Constitution Online

Q139. "Why can't I find anything about filibusters in the Constitution?"
 A. The short answer is because  there is nothing there to find: the  Constitution does not  contemplate  the filibuster in any  way, directly  or indirectly. So,  then, what is all  this talk about  the Framers, the  Senate, the  filibuster, and its    relationship to  the Constitution?
By way of definition, the filibuster is a delaying tactic that is a part of the rules of the Senate. It is a word that comes from the Spanish word for "freebooter," which means "pirate." The origin seems to be that a person who filibusters is plundering the time and focus of a deliberative body, like a legislature. Specifically, in the U.S. Senate, a filibuster is used by a single Senator or group of Senators to stop or delay action on a piece of legislation. It has long been the tradition of the Senate that debate may not be stopped unless those taking up the debate allow it to be stopped. In other words, once a Senator has the floor, he or she may continue to talk forever. This rule goes back to the very beginnings of the Senate. 

The Constitution allows each house of Congress to set its own rules. Early on, both houses had unlimited debate provisions. The House of Representatives, however, as a much larger body, found this rule unworkable and rules to limit debate came into effect. The Senate, until recently, never created such a rule. The term for the use of unlimited debate as a legislative tactic became known as a filibuster in the 1850's. The first attack on the filibuster came in 1841, by no lesser a figure than Henry Clay. It survived, though, until 1917, when the Senate adopted a rule allowing a filibuster to be stopped by a two-thirds vote. Such a vote is known as "cloture." Cloture ended the ability of a single Senator to hold up Senate business, but since a two-thirds vote can be difficult to get, it certainly did not stop the filibuster.

In 1975, the two-thirds rule was changed to three-fifths. Today, the three-fifths rule allows cloture on the basis of the vote of sixty Senators. In 2005, the filibuster again came under attack when threats to filibuster judicial appointments prompted calls for a rule change specifically against filibusters on judicial appointments.
So the filibuster has its constitutional origins in the ability of each house of Congress to set its own rules. It has its origins in the framers in that they saw the Senate as a place where extended debate and discussion would have a cooling effect on the actions of the more "heated" House. And it has its origins in the concept ingrained in our political system that the rights of the minority must be protected from the force of the majority.
The Senate procedure was not part of the Us Constitution. In fairness, the procedure has been used throughout modern US History and it has been used by both sides of the congressional isle.

McCain and McConnell have already run to microphones with clear threats of future Senatorial retaliation.

We will end this piece at this point with full knowledge the issue will be widely published here going forward. 

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