Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Mocking Byrd

Rich Bond has a great article (courtesy RealClearPolitics) which sets forth the history of the so-called "nuclear option" in the Senate. If the Republicans succeed in changing the Senate rules to prohibit filibusters on judicial nominees, it will not be the first time that a proverbial mushroom cloud hovered on the north side of the Capitol.

Robert Byrd, former majority leader and accomplished demagogue, is decrying the use of this option, but Grand Senator Kleegle used that same option four times according to Bond, when it suited his needs. The problem now is that it doesn't suit his needs.

I agree with Bond that calling it the "Byrd Precedent" is much wiser than the stupidity of the Republicans allowing it to be called the "nuclear option" which got its name from Democrats who said they would "go nuclear" on Republicans by stopping all Senate business if they dared to allow the Senate to be governed by majority rule. As Byrd himself said "the Senate was never intended to be a majoritarian body." Of course not. At least when Republicans are in the majority, that is.


Blogger Cranky Yankee said...

Let's interject some facts shall we.

GOP says,

• Originated a proposal in 1975 to reduce the supermajority from two-thirds to three-fifths.

Byrd and Senate Records Say,

• That his 1975 action was to prevent the Senate from switching to a simple majority vote.

GOP says,

• Broke a filibuster in 1977 with a simple majority vote.

Byrd and Senate Records Say,

• In the 1977 case, the Senate had already voted 77 to 17 to cut off debate when senators attempted a "post-cloture" filibuster.

GOP says,

• Threatened in 1979 to change Senate rules to break a filibuster, asserting that "this Congress is not obliged to be bound by the dead hand of the past" and that "rules have been changed from time to time."

Byrd and Senate Records Say,

• In the 1979 case, also about "post-cloture" filibusters, he was supported by Senate Republican leader Howard Baker (Tenn.).

GOP says,

• Made other parliamentary maneuvers in 1980 and 1987 to stifle debate.

Byrd and Senate Records Say,

• That his actions in 1980 and 1987 "did not contravene any precedent or standing rule" and "ensured that Senate procedure would conform more closely" to the rules.

See the wapo article from 4/10 and the Senate records to put it in a little context.

Quite frankly I hope the GOP tries this and the moderate (sane) GOP Senators reject it.

5:49 PM  
Blogger That Dude said...

So you're defedning the former leader of the KKK?

1:35 PM  
Blogger Cranky Yankee said...

Who said I was defending him? I'm just interjecting somefacts into a right wing website. I could follow your logic and say that because you are a republican you support all the racist statements guys like trent lott have made. Of course that logic is laughible and you should be embarrassed by it. Think about your logic...

Now if by saying "defending," assuming you are not taking the usually wingnut tactic of deflect, dismiss and deride by changing the frame to Byrd's racist past, you are asking if I am siding with him against this ridiculously dubious rethug attack, then yes I am defending Grand Senator Cleagle.

4:58 PM  

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