Saturday, January 29, 2022

Joe Manchin Lays Out the Filibusters Changes He Supports

Senator Joe Manchin (DW.Va.) outlined the changes to Senate anti-pirate rules that he will support, but remained unwavering in his opposition to an outburst of pirates in comments to Congressional reporters on Tuesday.

Manchin’s comments came after Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (New York) reaffirmed his commitment to take another vote on Wednesday on federal voting rights, backed by all 50 Senate Democratic Assembly members, before pushing for filibuster changes. if the Republicans block the bill again. legislation.

Since nearly all Republicans oppose both the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, Democrats will need to change the filibuster rules in order to pass both bills. Senators Kirsten Cinema (Arizona) and Manchin remain the only two Democratic senators to openly oppose the elimination of filibusters in order to pass the voting rights bill they support.

Manchin said PBS NewsHour reporter Lisa Desjardins on Tuesday that he supported a series of rule changes to make the Senate “work better.” These include getting rid of the filibuster to start a legislative debate, also known as a motion to continue, changing the threshold for ending the filibuster from 60 votes to three-fifths of those present, and demanding a speaking filibuster with senators limited to two speeches each.

“I’m not in favor of breaking the obstruction, but I’m in favor of making this place work better by changing the rules,” Manchin said.

Senator Joe Manchin (DW.Va.) is one of two Democratic Senators who have openly opposed the elimination of filibusters for a Voting Rights Act.

Chip Somodeville via Getty Images

The changes will not necessarily allow laws such as voter rights bills, which are currently blocked by GOP filibusters, but filibuster reform and voting rights advocates remain encouraged by Manchin’s willingness to publicly support any change.

“It’s very gratifying to hear Senator Manchin make it so clear that filibusters are being abused and that the rules need to be updated and reformed,” Eli Zupnik, director of public relations for the anti-filibuster coalition Fix Our Senate, wrote in an email. “We now hope that he will continue to work with leader Sumer and others to do this in a way that puts an end to obstruction by Senator McConnell and allows popular legislation to debate in depth and then vote for or against.”

Manchin continues to negotiate possible pirate reforms with Senators Angus King (Maine), John Tester (Mont) and Tim Kane (Virginia). That changes under discussion included a filibuster clipping for voting rights bills and some form of “talking” filibuster. Based on Manchin and Tester’s comments, the “talking filibuster” option seems to be the preferred change.

“Every time there is a tenderloin, you eat a whole turkey,” Manchin said when asked for his opinion on the filibuster tenderloin.

Tester told reporters on Monday that he was “not crazy” about exclusion and instead advocated the return of some form of “talking filibuster.”

However, Senate Democrats need the support of Manchin and Sinema to change the rules without Republican support. Manchin said he still hasn’t returned now.

Schumer promises he will push for a rule change ahead of the Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration on January 17 and after a test vote on voting rights laws this week. Whether Manchin and Sinema or other Democrats vote for or against changes to the filibusters rules, this could ultimately be decided by a vote in the Senate Hall.

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