Frustrated by constant republican opposition to pass Obama candidate nominations, Harry Reid may finally invoke the “nuclear option” and end the GOP’s ability to filibuster nominees. Politico reports that this may take place as soon as today. Politico reports: “Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid may move toward a historic change in the Senate rules to eliminate the filibuster on most nominations as soon as Thursday, according to senior Democratic aides. Reid is strongly considering calling up one in a group of blocked nominees to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals for another round of votes, furious that Republicans have thwarted the nominations of Robert Wilkins, Nina Pillard and Patricia Millette. If a second go-round fails on that judicial pick, Reid would likely unilaterally move to change the rules of the Senate by a majority vote — the “nuclear option,” Senate sources said.” This is not the first time Reid has threatened to go nuclear: “Privately, Senate Democratic leaders insist they prefer confirmation of Obama’s nominees rather than a rules change. And lawmakers have been at this point before.” However, it appears that this time he means business.
Bloomberg adds some additional quotes from the Nevada Senator for color:
- REID SAYS `AMERICAN PEOPLE BELIEVE CONGRESS IS BROKEN’
- REID SAYS HE AGREES THAT SENATE IS BROKEN
- REID SAYS OBSTRUCTION OF NOMINEES `UNPRECEDENTED’
- REID SAYS CONFIRMATION OF NOMINEES IS `UNWORKABLE’
What happens next:
The rules change being discussed among top Democrats would eliminate filibusters on all executive nominees as well as all judicial nominees, except those to the Supreme Court. Such a rules change would pave the path toward smoother confirmation for two more key Obama nominees: Janet Yellen to lead the Federal Reserve and Jeh Johnson to helm the Department of Homeland Security.
Still, Reid’s strategy may backfire if and when the republicans regain majority of the Senate:
Republicans are publicly warning that the change would simply be a path to eliminating the filibuster on everything, even on legislation — which would mean when the GOP takes the majority, Democrats will regret pushing the nuke button.
“You always have to take it seriously. I just think it would be incredibly short-sighted,” said Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, the Republican whip. “It just seems to be something they keep coming back to when [Democrats] don’t get their way.”
Then again, since Congress long lost control of a nation whose entire future hangs in the balance of the daily S&P closing print, what Reid or his peers do, is largely irrelevant, especially since Mr. Chairwoman just got the green light to get to work and make Congress even more irrelevant.
via Zero Hedge http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/zerohedge/feed/~3/ct5lk0W22jQ/story01.htm Tyler Durden