Saturday, March 27, 2021

Filibuster--Not So Threatened After All

Late this evening Paul Mirengoff wrote a post at Powerline, BIDEN’S RADICAL AGENDA LIKELY TO HIT WALL, in which he explains why the filibuster is likely to remain. The long and the short of it is simple: There are more Dem senators than just Joe Manchin who, for various reasons, are unwilling to do away with the filibuster. Read the entire post--it's worth it.

Mirengoff bases his post on an article at CNN--Democratic divisions on Biden's agenda broader than just Manchin. He quotes this key passage:

The push by liberal Democrats to enact President Joe Biden’s sweeping agenda is running into problems beyond just Sen. Joe Manchin: A handful of Democrats are not falling in line and could limit the scope of the party’s ambitions on an array of critical issues.

Some Senate Democrats like Sen. Jon Tester of Montana are not yet sold on the House-passed bills to expand background checks on gun sales. Eight Democrats are resisting calls to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour.

And it’s more than just Manchin and Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema who are opposed to changing Senate rules so a filibuster can be defeated by 51 votes, rather than 60: The two New Hampshire Democratic senators are resisting those calls as well, in addition to several others who are not yet persuaded that such a change is necessary.

“No,” Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, a New Hampshire Democrat, told CNN when asked if she would support eliminating the 60-vote threshold. “I think we should look at ways to reform the filibuster, but I don’t think getting rid of it is the best approach.”

New Hampshire’s junior Democratic senator, Maggie Hassan, who faces a tough reelection bid next year, also has “concerns about eliminating the filibuster,” a spokesperson said, though backs some reforms.

Mirengoff goes on to discuss all this at greater length. I offer this simply to talk some commenters in off the ledge. :-)

I don't really mean to make light of the dire straits our republic is in. However, I do believe that the Dems are not in as much control as many fear. It's all bad enough, but it's not time to despair. 


  1. So you refer to an article by Paul Maringoff that quotes at length an article from CNN. Then literally quote the passage of Maringoff's article the quotes CNN. Typical Maringoff all his posts at Powerline are based on other people's posts with very little -if any- value added. But my question to you is: why didn't quote and refer to the original article directly?

    1. My answer to you is that I don't want to pretend that I have the time to randomly comb the internet for news. I want interested readers to know how I got my information. I do, i fact, refer--by link--directly to the original article. I always try to give credit to all sources. Also, in fairness to Mirengoff, while you may regard his reflections on this news story as valueless, others may regard them as offering some value. Have a nice day.

    2. AND who the hell would ever read anything by CNN.

  2. As best i can figure, we seem to have entered a strange media multiverse where several different realities are being conjured. As a result, I never believe anything reported anywhere at face value but always assign it to the particular universe from whence it appears to emanate.

    This doesn't mean I don't believe there is truth or reality. Rather it's a tool for sorting out the blizzard of conflicting reports and opinions. Someone once remarked that one of the most difficult things for the human mind is to hold up and consider multiple, conflicting propositions at the same time. That, however, is what we all must do now that we live in a world where every published piece is corrupted by the writer's narrative. The only way to the truth seems to be comparing each story to concrete events--- i.e., is the universe described at odds with or consistent with what my lying eyes observe?

    So, for example, the Wuhan Flu. In the the Fauci Universe it is an endless killer justifying every suffocating precaution. My lying eyes don't see it. Reality doesn't seem to line up. And that's not how the Faucis of that universe act. They sit next to friends in baseball games, maskless, laughing. The GOPe universe posits that all will be well if we simply organize for 2022 and take back the House. But how many of them stood up against the real fraud of 2020? What are they doing to prevent it recurring?

    Most of the time, though, I admit I just don't know which reality is real. We are being bombarded with intentionally misleading and fake news all the time. Sometimes by good people who don't realize they are part of it. In this crazy time nothing is too far fetched it seems. Aliens? Who knows? Global cabal of reptile lords? Geez...nothing would surprise me anymore.

    1. For me its become helpful to start with the premise that every "news" article is a scribe for one or another 3-letter agency, because thats essentially what it has become. Now that the American people have confirmed to the Leviathan that they are not actually accountable, they simply use "journalists" as their mouthpieces when they want something - lobbying congress is so yesterday.

      The most recent example of this that I saw, being a gun guy, is the propaganda about the CO shooter. In no less than 3 separate publications on the same day, they focused on some very openly false talking points about pistol versus rifle, doing the usual, intentional interweaving of one concept to the other to create confusion and fear. Much of the confusion is of the ATF's own making, since we let them all make their own law now... but following the news, I know they are trying to seize more power the last year or two around this issue of defining AR platforms to be far more restrictive. They had a lot of pushback, but the time to sow their oats again is now.

      For a gun enthusiast, the distortions are patently obvious (one comment suggests that you "cut the back of the rifle off" to make it a pistol, which of course renders it inoperative, I laughed out loud at that part) and also clear where they came from - they pull some "former cop" as their "expert" to feed the lines to, and he unashamedly repeats them for an eager media after being the on-call expert in their rolodex... which the ATF or FBI gave them, of course.

      For the uninitiated, it sounds really official and scary. By design, obviously.

      And with the rule above in mind, it all makes sense: The ATF desires this new rule, so they feed their memo to the media.

      I'm so old I can recall when "journalists" would not only be deeply embarrassed to be found a stooge of the government, but they would be fired quickly.

    2. Amen - & since you touched on the gun issue - please allow me to vent:

      All this BS you hear about “Assault Weapons” is just another gaslight/false flag. Notice you never see the term “Assault Weapons” defined? BC then you’d be on to their ruse. Come with me here...

      What is an “Assault Weapon”? The term is derived from the German “Stürmgewehr” (literally “Storm Rifle”) developed in 1943. A banana-shaped 30rnd magazine fed a shorter version of the standard Mauser 7.92x57mm round. The weapon was designed by the renowned Hugo Schmeisser for either fully automatic fire or semi-automatic fire by means of a Selector Switch located on the receiver. Designated the StG44 or MP (Maschinenpistole) 44 the design was blatantly ripped off by Russian Antonin Kalashnikov for his AK-47 a few years later. It too can fire full auto or semi-auto as of course does the M-16/M-4 Carbines now used by the U.S. military.

      The AR(Armalite Rifle) 15 DOES NOT have this Selector Switch, ergo the AR-15 IS NOT an “Assault Rifle” but you never hear that from any of these disingenuous politicians/media hacks who will flatten anyone between them & the nearest camera/microphone. The AR-15 can only fire semi-automatic ONLY.

      I have an AR-15; ergonomically it’s a disaster. WWII rifles have much better beefier stocks. Moreover, .223/5.56mm round is limp wristed compared to the 7.92x57mm, .30’06, or .303.

      End of rant.


    3. To paraphrase "Mouse" some time ago... You anonymous people need to become un-anonymous or we'll lump you'all together forever.

  3. A fair question might be now that these other democrat politicians have witnessed that a payoff was given to Manchin with his wife's appointment to some obscure position by Biden, why shouldn't they get in on the gravy train too. Would that line of thought be beyond the pale based on what we've witnessed just in the past two months?

    On the other hand, much of what the democrats want to do, even if passed without a filibuster in place, would be tied up in the courts for years - long enough for the remaining sane and borderline crazy Americans to realize just how corrupt and power hungry that party has become. HR-1 would be a good example where states would sue based on constitutional grounds. And with respect to executive actions on gun control, lawsuits would undoubtedly stop the most egregious affronts to the 2nd Amendment cold.

    As I've said previously, the democrats know they have a limited amount of time to 'fundamentally change' the country. The first milestone will be the next national election in less than two years.


    1. “Held up in court for years”, not if after packing the court.
      Comment by Cheese.

    2. How’d that court thing work for Obamacare? Just sayin’

  4. We shall see: if its CNN, its effectively a mouthpiece for the DNC trying to call out dissenters and bring them in line.

    However, the quote from Shaheen is interesting about "reform." I doubt some wet noodle politician is thinking the same as I am, but IMO, the "filibuster" is not what it used to be when they just vote on cloture constantly. If you really believe in something, your side should do it the old fashioned way - standing on the floor, 24/7, lecturing, posturing, reading war and peace, whatever... until the other side relents.

    Never adjourning is another parlour trick I have no respect for whatsoever. Throw reconciliation in there, too.

    This laziness is one of the many aspects of our government that have caused its descent into something worse than useless. It is the enemy of the people.

    1. Anon, could you please add some identifying initials to set yourself apart from the other Anons? Others are now doing that and it really helps those of us who are trying to follow commenters. Thanks...

    2. Not a bad idea. Let's say "Bee".

      Reason for doing so (instead of the occasional simple-minded inanities that I am hiding behind anonymity because cowardice, instead of some good old fashioned prudence)... is that any time I log in, blogspot always defaults me to an old blogspot account I have, shared with some others on a very unrelated topic. For whatever reason they don't allow or I can;t figure out the procedure to have an alternate name associated to the same email.

      They would most definitely NOT want to be associated with anything I have to say about politics, and I respect their wishes. I therefore switch to anonymous every comment, and then wait patiently for Mark to approve me. ;)

      Sincerely yours,

  5. There are a number of factors at work in all this.

    Dem senators still have to get reelected and--contrary to what some commenters here like to say--elections are not over and done with, Dem victories are not all assured. Schumer knows that, too, and therefore his ability to pressure senators is limited by his own interest in preserving or expanding his slimmest of majorities. If he pressures a senator to take a step that then loses him his majority, he may well have cut his nose to spite his face. Dem senators from smaller, or Red, states also know that the filibuster helps preserve their influence. WV, NH, MT, and others.

  6. Anyone looking to Manchin to vote on the side of sanity is now apt to be disappointed. He appears to have been bought and paid for via his wife’s appointment to a position in the Zhou Administration. Only he can put down that negative optic by doing the right thing in spite of her appointment. I don’t like to lose, so won’t bet on that.

    In the end, it’s all about politics. “What have you done for me lately?” Not what is right.

    1. Mirengoff isn't convinced that was enough to get him to vote against the filibuster. What will Biden do if Manchin doesn't vote against--try to fire Manchin's wife?

    2. One of Kamel's few (mentionable in polite society) skills is exacting revenge on your political opponents. A big reason she was brought on by team O.

      Would not be surprised if she quietly tosses a couple daggers at his back if he doesn't fall in line on the big ones like guns.

      Really don't understand WV in this regard...

    3. I too am not convinced it's enough to get him to vote against anything filibuster or HR1 or beyond quite frankly. But hey... what goes around comes around.