Longstanding Problems Are Still Problematic

Posted on  

"Longstanding Problems Are Still Problematic"

A Josh Marshall correspondent says people should stop whining about filibusters:

The Framers didn’t design the Senate as a clone of the House. It is obviously frustrating to both sides when dirt gets thrown in the gears. But I think people tend to get aggravated about what’s going on today, and forget about how this has been happening for over 200 years in the World’s Most Deliberative Body.

I don’t think this is remotely persuasive. Not only does it neglect the considerable evidence that the situation has, in fact, worsened over time, but it’s not even the sort of thing that would be persuasive. If the framers had deemed it crucial that the Senate operate via supermajority, they could have written that into the constitution. What’s more, it’s not really clear what relevance the framers have here—they wanted an un-elected Senate, they wanted slavery, they wanted lots of things. Last, the fact that some version of this problem has existed for a long time is no reason not to change it. An anti-lynching bill could have passed during the Hardin administration if not for the filibuster. That counts as a point against filibusters, not for them.

« »

By clicking and submitting a comment I acknowledge the ThinkProgress Privacy Policy and agree to the ThinkProgress Terms of Use. I understand that my comments are also being governed by Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, or Hotmail’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policies as applicable, which can be found here.