|THIS IS WHY THE DEMS WENT NUCLEAR|
Senate Democrats pushed through a historic change to the chamber’s rules on Thursday, doing away with filibusters on executive appointments and most judicial nominations in a bid to ease the gridlock gripping the chamber.
The move, known as the “nuclear option,” passed by a vote of 52-48, with all but three Democrats voting to reform the chamber’s rules and every Republican opposing the measure.
“I support the step a majority of Senators took today to change the ways of Washington by changing the way Congress does business,” President Obama told reporters at the White House.
“This gridlock has not served the cause of justice. In fact it has undermined it.
“A majority of Senators believe, as I believe, enough is enough,” he said. “Public service is not a game. It is a privilege.”
VIDEO COURTESY OF MSNBC
The mid-session revision to Senate rules will prevent use of the filibuster to block executive and judicial nominations, with the exception of Supreme Court nominees. It lowers the 60-vote threshold to move forward on such nominations to a simple majority. The change does not apply to legislation, meaning that all bills will still require 60 votes to clear the Senate.
Fed up with the pattern of obstruction that has grounded the chamber’s business to a halt, Senate Democrats cast aside the minority’s objections and moved ahead with the first change to filibuster rules since 1975, when the chamber reduced the threshold required to surmount a filibuster from 67 to 60. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid argued that curbing abuse of the filibuster was a necessity for the hidebound institution to function properly.
“The Senate is a living thing,” the Nevada Democrat said during a speech on the Senate floor. “To survive, it must change.”
I can only say, it’s about freaking time!