Filibuster Madness

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Back in 2005 Democrats filibustered ten of George Bush’s judicial nominees, ending with the famous “Gang of 14” compromise.1 Apparently Republicans have decided to get their revenge by filibustering every Barack Obama nominee, even ones that Republicans themselves unanimously approve of. Steve Benen has the capsule summary of Barbara Milano Keenan’s meandering journey to the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals.

So what’s the strategy here? Take your pick: (a) It’s just to piss off Democrats. (b) It’s got nothing to do with judges, it’s just to slow down the Senate so that it has less time for other business. (c) It’s habit. (d) All of the above. Me? I guess I’ll go with (d).

1By the way, whether or not the Democratic filibusters were defensible, they had pretty good reason for them. Everybody seems to have forgotten about this history, though, so here’s the background.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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