…when the Republicans wanted to use the “nuclear option” of ending the practice of filibustering in Congress? Now they’re on track to become the world-record holding, all-time champions of the filibuster.
“Nearly 1 in 6 roll-call votes in the Senate this year have been cloture votes. If this pace of blocking legislation continues, this 110th Congress will be on track to roughly triple the previous record number of cloture votes – 58 each in the two Congresses from 1999-2002, according to the Senate Historical Office.”
A cloture vote is called to end debate so that the overall matter before the Senate can be voted on. You need a supermajority (three fifths of the Senate) to win a cloture vote. You call a cloture vote when your opponent is filibustering (i.e., has the floor and won’t shut up). For some reason, most media outlets seem to be avoiding the word “filibuster” when reporting on Congress these days. For example, the recent overnight Senate debate was described in terms of Democratics “failing to force a vote” on Iraq withdrawals. Another way of reporting this would have been “Republicans filibuster Iraq war vote.” Because that’s what they did. (As is their right, but only because they didn’t eliminate that right back when they were in charge.)