The Senate enacted modest reforms to its filibuster rules with votes that kept bipartisan relations intact but left disappointed liberal groups fuming.It's streamlined a bit, but only a bit.
The reforms are the biggest changes to the Senate’s filibuster rules in decades but fell well short of drastic reforms demanded by labor unions and liberal-leaning advocacy groups.
The deal negotiated between Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) provoked an outcry from liberal groups.
Passage of the deal sets to rest Reid’s threat, which he had wielded for months, to use the so-called "nuclear option" to change the Senate’s filibuster rules through a simple majority vote.
The enacted reforms do not include the implementation of the talking filibuster, which would require senators seeking to block legislation to actively hold the floor and debate. If debate stops, the pending matter moves to a simple majority vote, under this proposal.
Nor does it shift the burden of sustaining a filibuster onto the minority party by requiring senators to muster 41 votes to continue blocking legislation. Now the burden is on the majority to round up 60 votes to overcome a filibuster.