Mar 17, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 26 • By THE SCRAPBOOK
Terry Eastland noted three weeks ago in these pages (“After the Filibuster,” February 24) that “President Obama and Senate Democrats have gone to great lengths to secure the appointment of executive-branch officers and judges and thus help advance his policies and programs.” A key move was Senate majority leader Harry Reid’s uprooting of that age-old Senate tradition, the filibuster. No longer could the president’s nominees be held up by a determined minority in possession of a mere 41 votes. Instead of a supermajority of 60, a bare majority of 51 senators would henceforth be able to cut short debate (cloture) and move to a vote. Eastland took care to note that Reid’s procedural steamroller was not entirely bad news for opponents of the president:
The new threshold doesn’t guarantee confirmation, and some Republicans think it will work in some cases in their favor. Thus, where under the old supermajority rule red-state Democratic senators (seven are up for reelection this year) were able to hide, in effect, behind cloture votes on left-wing nominees, now they will be on the record with up-or-down votes and thus at risk of upsetting more conservative constituents or damaging relationships with their colleagues and the president.
It took less than a month for this observation to be revealed as prophetic. Legal writer Ed Whelan, in his National Review Online column, provides a succinct summary. On March 6,
seven Democratic senators joined Republicans to deliver a smashing defeat to President Obama’s nomination of Debo Adegbile to be Assistant Attorney General for DOJ’s Civil Rights Division. . . . One welcome consequence of the abolition of the supermajority cloture rule is to make Senate Democrats accountable for their votes. If . . . the supermajority cloture rule were still in effect, the seven Democrats who oppose Adegbile would probably have been inclined to stand aside and let Republicans take the heat for blocking the nomination. . . . It’s a great lose-lose for Democrats. The Adegbile nomination is defeated, and red-state and purple-state Democrats who voted for him and who are up for re-election this November may pay heavily for doing so. That list includes Kay Hagan of North Carolina, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire, Mark Udall of Colorado, and Mark Begich of Alaska.
Helluva job, Harry Reid!
1:34 PM, Feb 26, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
There appears to be a new Obamacare strategy on the left: to tell people their Obamacare horror stories are made up. First, Harry Reid said, "Despite all that good news, there's plenty of horror stories being told. All of them are untrue, but they're being told all over America."
10:21 AM, Feb 26, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Harry Reid spoke about the Obamacare "horror stories" on the Senate floor this morning. He said that "all are untrue."
"Despite all that good news, there's plenty of horror stories being told. All of them are untrue, but they're being told all over America," said Reid.
2:00 PM, Jan 30, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Ted Cruz says that anyone in favor of the so-called immigration reform bill "should go ahead and put a 'Harry Reid for Majority Leader' bumper sticker on their car."
Obama tougher on Congress than Iran.7:07 AM, Jan 13, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
The Iran nuclear deal is in place. And Senate majority leader Harry Reid is preventing the Senate from voting on Iran sanctions to be implemented in case the Iran deal fails. Reid is holding up the vote at the urging of President Obama.
The Emergency Committee for Israel is calling on Reid to allow a vote on the sanctions bill that's supported by many Democrats and Republicans, and well over half of the Senate.
"Who says President Obama isn't tough?" ECI asks in its statement.
3:01 PM, Jan 9, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
More than 70 foreign policy experts have signed a letter addressed to the leaders in both parties in both houses of Congress urging them to enforce Iran's compliance with the nuclear deal agreed upon in Geneva late last year. Read the full text of the letter, organized by the Foreign Policy Initiative, below:
6:26 AM, Jan 9, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
A group of House Republicans has written a letter to Barack Obama to warn that the immigration bill he supports will have an adverse effect on American workers. The immigration bill will, the letter writers say, lead to an increase in unemployment and poverty, help collapse the middle class, and decrease wages for American citizens.
11:23 AM, Dec 23, 2013 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
Drudge is headlining a report from Fox News foreseeing the demise of Las Vegas and Atlantic City. In other words, the end of civilization as we know it.
9:05 AM, Dec 20, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
NBC's Kasie Hunt reports on Twitter that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid "has been hospitalized."
8:01 AM, Nov 25, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
Bill Kristol, with Donna Brazile, Cokie Roberts, and Matthew Dowd, yesterday on ABC News:
Dec 2, 2013, Vol. 19, No. 12 • By THE SCRAPBOOK
Setting aside the flaming dirigible that is Obamacare, the big news out of Washington heading into the Thanksgiving holiday is that Democrats have finally made good on their threat to eliminate the filibuster for judicial and executive branch appointments. For the last few years, Senate majority leader Harry Reid, with enthusiastic support from the liberal base, had been threatening to strip the minority party in the upper chamber of this important power.
8:27 AM, Nov 21, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
The Senate is preparing to go nuclear, according to the Huffington Post. Which is to say: Harry Reid wants to change Senate rules in order to roll Republicans who he believes are getting in his way.
5:22 PM, Oct 24, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
Senate majority leader Harry Reid says that "Everybody" is "willing to pay more" taxes. He said so in an interview with a Nevada Public Radio host.
Hosted by Michael Graham.4:11 PM, Oct 15, 2013 • By TWS PODCAST
THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with staff writer John McCormack on the latest in the government shutdown and debt ceiling talks: