Posted by: coastcontact | November 21, 2013

Majority Should Rule

Although the rule allowing a filibuster in the United States Senate was created in 1789, the first Senate filibuster occurred in 1837.  Clearly the intent is to stop the Senate from conducting its business.  Since 1917, the minority has enjoyed the right to unlimited debate on legislation and nominations until the majority can amass a super-majority. In recent years, that has meant 60 votes.

One senator can impact the wishes of the majority.  It is clearly an undemocratic procedure.

There continues to be a debate about the rights of the minority in a democracy.  It revolves around the argument that even minorities have rights.  While that may have some validity, the opportunity to vote should not be denied.  The results of any election, whether in an elected body or the total electorate should determine a course of action.  Flibusters deny that opportunity.

I celebrate the Senate’s vote (52-48) to change the filibuster rule to change proceedings so that only a simple majority was required to clear the way for a final vote on all appointments except Supreme Court nominations.

In California there are regulations that require a two-thirds majority to change tax laws.  That too is undemocratic.  Thus we have tax laws that are almost impossible to change.

This rule change should not only apply to all senate business, it should apply to all elections and all representative bodies.  “Majority rule” is what democracy is all about.

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