Posted September 29, 2012 | comments 6 Comments

Letter to the Editor: The value of filibusters


Dan Flathers in his letter to the editor published in the Northern Virginia Daily on Sept. 20 correctly states that "the filibuster is valued by both parties." But the fact is that since 2001 the filibuster has been valued much more often by Republicans than Democrats.

During the six sessions of Congress between 2001 and 2007 when the Democrats were in the minority in the Senate, the Democrats used the filibuster an average of 34 times per session. In the six sessions of Congress between 2007 and today when the Republicans were in the minority, the Republicans used the filibuster an average of 64 times per session and the current session isn't over yet.

So in the past 12 years, the Republicans have used the filibuster almost twice as often as the Democrats. The Republicans have used the filibuster to kill (among many others) The American Jobs Act, The Disclose Act, The Dream Act and recently The Veterans Jobs Corps Act.

There are two conclusions to be drawn from this record: (1) You can't hold Obama accountable for continued high unemployment because the Republicans have effectively shut down Congress and with it the legislation necessary to implement Obama's economic policies; and (2) Just 41 out of 100 senators can use the filibuster to kill legislation tying Congress in knots. In order to reduce Congressional dysfunction, the Senate needs to change the super majority currently required to pass legislation from 60 votes to say 55 votes so that when one party or the other has a significant majority, that party can pass legislation in support of the policies for which that majority was elected.

Waller H. Wilson, Front Royal

6 Comments | Leave a comment

    Thank-you Mr. Wilson. The numbers are there, the information is free, if only more people weren't too lazy to use it.

      You're right Katybug, "seek and you will find". It's difficult to understand a mind so rigid and uninterested in learning the truth (regardless of a political party allegiance) that one would willingly accept everything at face value.

      It does take more effort to learn the truth from the lies: perhaps that is the basis of ignorance. I do believe some people are finally starting to question the nonsense coming from the Republican Party. The debates will start in a few days, I want to hear Romney tell us how he will help this country.

    Now I understand what it's like to be a straight man in a Monty Python skit...

    Thanks for the illumination, guys!

    Bulleye self description, Flathers.... As Monty Python succinctly pointed out to the skit's straight man, "clearly the parott has died, he is no more, he is deceased, he is dead...."

    Bwwaaahhhhh hahahahaha.

    Thank you for a really good letter, Mr. Wilson. As has been said, the facts are there but some would rather not acknowledge the facts. I guess they are afraid it would just test their beliefs all around in today's "new" Republican Party----not "your father's Republican Party"----that has moved so far to the radical right.

    Nailed it Mr. Wilson.

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