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Blocking the Senate should be hard work

I think we all knew that the growing call for filibuster reform was going to meet with some resistance eventually. Well, here it is: Senior Democrats say Reid will not have the votes to change the rule at the beginning of next year. "It won't happen," said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who said she would "probably not" support an effort to lower the number of votes needed to cut off filibusters from 60 to 55 or lower. Sen. Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii) echoed Feinstein: "I think we should retain the same policies that we have instead of lowering it. "I think …

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The filibuster is what enables the 'secret hold' in the Senate

Next we’ll find out the Senate has a secret hold on puppies too. Besides blocking legislation that enjoys majority support from coming to a vote, the filibuster lies at the heart of a number of disruptive and anti-democratic practices in the Senate, including the so-called "secret hold." A secret hold – or for that matter, a non-secret one – is really nothing but a proxy for a filibuster threat. The Senate ordinarily moves its legislation to the floor by unanimous consent, often under the terms of a formal unanimous consent agreement negotiated by the party leaders, which dictates the agreed-upon …

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