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Nuclear Option Watch (Update – BOOM!)

Nuclear Option Watch (Update – BOOM!)


Senate Filibuster Rule Change Vote 11-21-2013

Before the vote:

Looks like Senate Democrats are about to invoke the so-called Nuclear Option.

What is the nuclear option?

The “nuclear option” refers to a move by the majority party in Senate — in this case the Democrats — to change the Senate rules to allow most executive branch and judicial nominations to be approved with a simple majority – 51 votes — rather than the 60 votes now required. Under the current rules, the minority party can block a nomination with just 41 votes, commonly called a filibuster.

On Abolishing the Judicial Filibuster:

As I understand it, the Reid proposal would eliminate the filibuster for lower-court judges and is designed to lead to the confirmation of the three pending D.C. Circuit nominees. As I’ve long made clear, I’d be happy to see the filibuster abolished for judicial nominees.

I will note, though, that I don’t see how Reid can abolish the filibuster vis-à-vis pending judicial nominees without setting a clear precedent that would enable a future Senate majority, in the very midst of a confirmation battle over a Supreme Court nominee, to abolish the filibuster with respect to that nominee.

As Roll Call (and others) have reported:

There’s long been concern among some supporters of abortion rights about deploying the nuclear option for lifetime appointments to the federal bench, because a Republican White House could team up with a future GOP-led Senate to confirm judicial nominees hostile to the landmark Roe v. Wade decision.

It would be funny indeed if folks on the Left who evidently rue Senate Democrats’ opportunistic decision in 2003 to inaugurate the filibuster as a weapon against judicial nominees were now to support an opportunistic rule change that would lay the foundation for making it much easier for a Republican president to appoint anti-Roe Supreme Court nominees.


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JimMtnViewCaUSA | November 21, 2013 at 11:07 am

Wasn’t this a _huge_ deal back when the Repubs considered it?
I hope they reflect on the rewards of caving to Dems.

    Democrats never care about their own hypocrisy. They will lie, scream and mislead in order to try to prevent something from occurring when it doesn’t suit them, however the instant that it gives them an advantage, it becomes “for the greater good.”

    I expect to see a young, ultra-liberal Judicial nomination for every single open federal appeals court seat no later than the end of December. The Dems will push them through on a party-line vote, and will change the face of the Judiciary for the next 30 years or more.

    Karen Sacandy in reply to JimMtnViewCaUSA. | November 21, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    Yep, McCain and his gangs avoiding “conflict,” so dems can win the next time.

    McCain sucks.

    Doug Wright Old Grouchy in reply to JimMtnViewCaUSA. | November 21, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    What’s the Big F’ing deal, Reid will rescind the nuclear option just before the 2014 final session and put the prior filibuster rules back in force. So, what the heck, where’s the problem, eh?

    Oops, lost my mind for a brief time, with a then GOP majority for 2015, the Senate might invoke a 67% percent rule to end filibusters once the new Congress meets in 2015. Still, once a GOP president takes office and with the GOP running both chambers, it might be time to tell the Socialists and their sycophants to go take a long coffee break, like forever! That would be friendly than a true purge!

    Aw shucks, still that’s what I believe Obama the Semi-Magnificent will do when the GOP takes control of both houses.

Reid had better be careful. The Dems won’t control the Senate forever. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander, or something like that.

    It really doesn’t matter. The damage is now done. Obama will have 13 months of Democrat Senate control to push through ultra-liberal nominees to every federal bench and cabinet post which can no longer be blocked, and cannot be removed even if the Republicans take over the Senate in January 2015 after the midterms.

    John Roberts the traitor (spit) had better eat his Wheaties. He’s about to have to deal with a whole lot of ultra-leftists trying to make unconstitutional law decisions stick at the appeals level.

      Republicans can still put a “hold” on a nominee, and they can also refuse to grant any unanimous consent, which will slow down the Senate like molasses in January.

Not A Member of Any Organized Political | November 21, 2013 at 11:14 am

There they (Dems) go Postal Again!

Today’s Democrat Party – Finally Sociopaths have a HOME!

NC Mountain Girl | November 21, 2013 at 11:21 am

This is being considered because Reid knows that in 2015 he is likely to have one of the lowest totals in his caucus since the Republicans held only 37 to 38 seats from 1977 to 1981. Thus by the time eliminating the filabuster will have a meaningful impact, he is likely to be retired.

Consider that if Hagen is in trouble in NC, I suspect Franken will be in trouble in Minnesota, as he won a three way race in 2008 only because of a botched recount. I hear Senate Democrat PACs are already pouring money into some states they didn’t think they would have to defend. If Democrats continue to freefall in the polls a lot of the corporate money will dry up because that money tends to follow the anticipated winners.

Reid is running out of options, fast, unless he considers throwing Obama under the bus.

    Throwing Obama under the bus would be easy enough. BO isn’t running for office again. Obamacare, however, is tied to billions of dollars in loans and contracts to Democratic supporters, everything from seed money for insurance companies to employment for Democratic foot soldiers in the next election.

      NC Mountain Girl in reply to Valerie. | November 21, 2013 at 11:41 am

      It’s not as easy as all that. The problem that gave Obama the nomination in 2008 despite many Democrat insiders misgivings about his experience and executive ability still looms large in 2013. If black voters stop turning out in mass and voting 90% Democrat the Democrat party cannot win statewide elections in many so called blue states such as Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois and Pennsylvania. Throw Obama under the bus and Reid risks causing the Democrat party to cease to be able to present itself as a national party and becomes instead merely a party of the nation’s urban areas and the coastal states.

        Not A Member of Any Organized Political in reply to NC Mountain Girl. | November 21, 2013 at 11:51 am

        and if he doesn’t throw Obama under the bus……

        “Reid risks causing the Democrat party to cease to be able to present itself as a national party and becomes instead merely a party of the nation’s urban areas and the coastal states.”

        What you said is true I think either way Reid twists in the ill wind.


So what happens if the GOP wins the Senate in 2014?

    The nation remains screwed until at least 2017 when the next president takes office.

    Obama will simply nominate those individuals he is going to nominate, they won’t pass (and likely won’t even be brought up for vote) in the Senate, and Obama will go out there every damn day and say “Well, those obstructionist Republicans won’t let me appoint good people to do the people’s business.”

    It gives the Democrats a 2016 campaign issue to say “give us back control of the Senate and the Presidency so we can get past those Republican obstructionists.” Plus, as noted above, the fear factor on the left regarding a anti-Roe, anti-Casey, appointment to the bench on the fly.

      A better response by Republicans would be to fully vet each nominee in committee hearings, vote out a committee recommendation, not to confirm in many cases, bring it to a floor vote, and defeat it. Would they be smart enough to do this? Probably not.

    Same Same in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | November 21, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    If McConnell becomes majority leader he will promptly disregard the Reid Rule as improperly passed and go back to business as usual. Obama and Reid will have stacked the federal judiciary for a generation and the Tame Republicans will let it slide without even using the new rule themselves.

    Juba Doobai! in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | November 21, 2013 at 6:57 pm

    The Democrats will change the rule back; then, they will talk about comity. The GOP will talk about reaching across the aisle and about compromise. They won’t change back the rule after the Democrats change it back after the election when the GOP wins control of the Senate.

I love the smell of desperation in the morning.

Reid admits he expects big problems in the 2014 senatorial races. They’re going to ram stuff in as best they can while they can. The Democrats are starting to act like 1945 Berlin government clerks shredding documents as the Russians enter the city.

(I want credit for not using ‘Nazi’).

Joe Trippi was on Gretta last night talking common sence, but when Gretta asked him if the democrat party was dead he sadly shook his head and said they weren’t but they were in a tough spot, and then started to say something about the American people being willing to – I assumed forgive – I turned it off and called my Senator.

American people are generally kind and honest people who do forgive, they do not forgive an attack. Which is what democrats did, they attacked our health care, they weaponized the IRS to stiffle desent, they minulipated employment numbers to swindle the office of president.

Look what they did to Joe the Plumber when he asked Obama a simple question their minions dug into every corner of his private life and published it. Look what they did to Sarah Palin, the tea party.

This Harry Ried “nuclear option” is an attack on our representatives no matter how he tried to sugar coat it. Democrats are weary of the representatives of the stinkey masses rain on their parade.

They have no moral coumpus, only lust for power.

WOW. He pulled the trigger. But Reid just voted Nay, which means he doesn’t have the votes and he knows it, so he retains the right to re-open the issue by voting against his own motion.

The final count will be interesting.

Babs Boxer voted No, also. Hmmm…

    persecutor in reply to pjm. | November 21, 2013 at 12:49 pm

    Reid voted “No” because under Senate rules, it preserved his right to make a motion to reconsider, in case it didn’t go his way. He always does this to protect for the unanticipated and so did Lott when he was Majority Leader.

48 Yays ! “The decision of the chair is not sustained”

Wait ! I misunderstood what was moved ! Freaking Reid won ! It’s nuked !

Now Mitchell asks for yeas and nays, they revote ? OK, I’m clueless on this procedure ….

I do see Leahy has the chair, they didn’t pull Biden in …

I hope the R’s have the balls to shut the place down !

Not so much as a bathroom break without a recorded quorum roll call and full reading of every bill, and every other damn thing.

The END of ‘unanimous consent’ needs to start NOW !!!

Roosevelt tried court packing, it bit him in the ass. The R’s better git to the biting now !

    The whole “Court Packing” plan by Roosevelt got him exactly what he wanted. There’s a rhyme that we all learned in law school: “The switch in time that saved the nine.”

    What it boiled down to is that one of the SCOTUS Justices changed his vote and started pronouncing Roosevelt’s patently Unconstitutional power grabs to be Constitutional. Had it happened a few months earlier, we would live in a much more Fascist nation than we live in now (and yes, Roosevelt WAS a Fascist).

    If you want a GREAT example of how absurd it became, read “Wickard v. Filburn” where a farmer, growing wheat on his own property, which never left his property, to feed to his OWN livestock, was found to be engaging in interstate economic activity for the purposes of Federal Constitutional review, because if he was using his OWN wheat, he wouldn’t be BUYING wheat on the market, which might destabilize wheat quotas and subsidies for farmers not to farm, because wheat was traded nationally.

      Yep. The Commerce Clause has been twisted beyond all recognition.

      Witness also now the EPA’s power grab under the ‘Clean Water Act’. According to them, a puddle in your yard after a rain is under their jurisdiction as a ‘navigable waterway’.

      Just WAIT and see the havock if the left gets their ‘Climate Change’ crap passed !

Crisis, opportunity. It never ends. The Left is ALWAYS on the offensive. No regret, no shame, no looking back. Kind of impressive, really, the total commitment and lack of compunction, the animalistic drive.

More is coming. But we’ll probably be too busy schadenfreuding over Obamacare to miss the wonderful treats in store for us over the next year.

I heard that terror Mitch McConnell croaking and harrumphing with refined umbrage in the well of the senate this morning. Stern stuff. I’m sure the Left has been duly put on its heels and won’t try anything like this again!

    …But we’ll probably be too busy schadenfreuding over Obamacare to miss the wonderful treats in store for us over the next year.

    1. Indeed. IMO it is hubristic to project today’s climate of opinion to next November, let alone to November 2016.

    Today’s climate means the voters might give the GOP coalition another hearing. Nothing more. It remains for the GOP to make the case it can govern competently.

    2. The vote on the nuclear option was 52-48. Three Democrats voted against their party.

    Although specific names don’t come to mind, I’m pretty sure that between them the GOP Establishment and the Tea Party rammed through enough suboptimal nominees to hand at least three seats to the Democrats.

And right after Reid ended the Filibuster as we knew it, he called for cloture on one of the judges, and the R’s granted Unanimous Consent to skip the quorum call and roll call !

IOW, the R’s are flatter than a pancake, they’ve been 100 % rolled !

The next tiny step will be applying the new rule to legislation, not just appointments !

Here’s Harry on this subject !

Lying sack of shit…..

Time to do a top-to-bottom reform of the Federal judiciary…

when we gain control of the Senate after 2014.


If you like your Republic, and you vote for Conservatives, you can keep your Republic.

Otherwise you’re screwed.

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | November 21, 2013 at 1:24 pm

Years ago Reid passed Obamacare without a single Republican vote despite it being one of the biggest society changing pieces of legislation ever using an arcane progess called “budget reconciliation”. Remember that was called the “nuclear option” then. Now he’s nuking the filibuster and reducing minority rights.

Reid is clearly the most partisan, hackish Majority Leader the Senate has ever had – at least in my lifetime.

The real radical extremists are not the Tea Party, but the “progressive” Democrats. They’re the ones that are making huge changes in society and its governing institutions.

[…] Detonate The Nuclear Option In The Senate: Well, it will be nice for the Republicans to have when they take back the Senate in […]

Yucca Mountain awaits you harry reid.

The next phase-in of Obamacare, applying to small business, is due to come into play right before the midterm elections next year. Causing MANY millions of company insurance policies to be cancelled, and premiums doubled.

Hmmm…. How much you wanna bet Obama comes up with an extension or exception that pushes that little fact PAST the elections ?

Democrats have just moved our separated 3 houses of government a step closer to an autocratic system of ruling by their taking. Following Obamas lead by over stepping the constitution, these self-serving egotists have snatched a power grab of the nth magnitude. Like Reid and is ilk who are using the O’s shirt tail they have done an egregious and unforgiveable action to our country. These elected who have willingly taken 225 years of proven constitutional government with self-correcting protocols and legislated them away to benefit the movement of one more step closer to a socialist society. Obama and his mentor Ayres have accomplished all this in 5 years. This must come back and bite them all in the ass starting at this time next year.

Should they next remove the equality of all senators, such as those from the small and less populated states?

The Senate never was about majority rule.

This will be played as Democrats usurping power and will reinforce that perception of how ObamaCare was mandated without regard for minority rights.

By showing that it is just about taking power at all costs, Democrats are helping the Republicans more than anyone.

    Yeah… and this is how it is being portrayed on Yahoo by AP:

    “Democrats pick up a win as a measure to make it harder for the GOP to block presidential nominees passes.”

To about 1840 or so the House also had a version of the filibuster. It wasn’t quite the same as the Senate but by rule and decorum, one needed a super-majority to move bills through.

Up to the 1890s there was a variant of this called the “disappearing quorum”: the House needed a super-majority to make a quorum, so the minority party if disciplined enough would refuse to answer whenever a quorum just happened to be call, causing everything to stop. Then House Speaker Reed (a Pub) said, “The best system is to have one party govern and the other party watch”, and set about to eliminate this, and he did. The Democrats howled but the Pubs prevailed, and so now we have a modern House in which 218 yea votes makes things happen.

I shall suggest that it is time for the Senate filibuster to disappear completely.

Yes, I believe that major changes in our government should be done on a bipartisan basis: Social Security. Medicare. Civil Rights Bill. Decision to go to war in Iraq. And so on. Our country’s parties should agree on the big things.

But if the Democrats are going to behave like monkeys at a zoo then Speaker Reed is right: one party governs, the other opposes. And the party that is in power has the RESPONSIBILITY to govern wisely or else end up out of power.

The lack of a filibuster will hurt the next fourteen months. But the public (I predict) will see how the Democrats govern, and in a year the public shall vote. Eliminating the filibuster removes the one big excuse Harry Reid has had in his time as majority leader, that he couldn’t get anything done because those eeeeeevil Rethuglicans wouldn’t let him.

Okay Harry, let’s see your real agenda. I think the American people will figure out what you’re up to and will decide to oppose you, particularly if the Pubs are smart enough (and remember, we’re called the Stupid Party for a reason) to hoist him on his petard next October.

Budget? No excuse now, they have to pass a budget. Raving red lunatics for the appeals courts? Make clear that they’re loonies. And so on.

How is it the Pubs can win the House and win most state district and senate races (the Pubs do hold a sizable majority in the state legislatures right now), and yet lose Senate races? Because Dirty Harry, Chuckles Schumer, and Dirty Dick Durbin have managed to keep power and avoid responsibility.

No longer. Now they’re responsible, 50% + 1.

I predict they shall be called on it in November 2014.

    There is one major flaw in this concept, and that is that when you have 50% of the population living in economic slavery to the Government by accepting handouts, they will vote for what is in their economic interest. aka the Democrats which promise them free stuff and money, while saying “soak the rich” over and over again.

    This has become a war between the decayed urban centers where the minorities and the morally bankrupt have gathered (we shall generally call them “takers”) and the more rural population centers which are generally “producers.”

    Where there are many “takers,” they will consistently send someone who promises to take from the “producers” in order to maintain the “takers” standard of living without disruption. The “producers” on the other hand, have to fight their OWN local takers, or those fortunate few amongst them who bleed with compassion for the plight of those less fortunate, and think that “Society should do something!”

    But, those compassionate few know that they cannot change the course of so many by volunteering alone, so they misleadingly claim “social justice” is necessary to raise those unfortunate many from the dregs of society.

    In order to change the outcome, we need to change the equation. Perhaps an amendment that only those with a positive tax balance are eligible to vote in the next election? Only those with a stake in “funding” the government get to make the decisions? Perhaps then use that to pass a “fair tax” proposal.

Making bold moves requires good results. If you dare and fail, you get punished for hubris and overreach. If you succeed, you’re Ronald Reagan.

pablo panadero | November 21, 2013 at 2:55 pm

Not sure if the dems have really thought this through. With filibuster gone they have no excuse to not pass a budget from the senate. When we run up against the spending limit, house tells senate no money until you produce a budget. Dems can’t afford to split their coalition by actually making decisions on priority and therefore a budget.

I’m uncertain the ‘shoe on the other foot’ waiting game is the Democratic strategy; My thought is that this is a chess vs. checkers mentality

So as we approach the anniversary of the public murder of an American President by a lover of the Soviet state, the Left publicly murders legislative comity, while their incompetent POTUS comedy plays on. Iron-fisted, single-party rule is being thrust upon us. The triumph of defeating soviet totalitarianism has morphed into American totalitarianism.

There is no silver lining, this is a devastatingly low point. While there has been precious little reaching across the aisle for many years, the memory and tradition of such comity was always present. Say good-bye to middle-ground and to common ground and to steady governance. The political pendulum will swing ever more widely and ever more rapidly — with Republicans and Democrats in perpetual savaging of each other.

The Left has given us this wasteland. General Sherman said that the South chose the remedy of war, and it was incumbent upon him to give it to them abundantly. The Left has released the Kraken of all-out acrimony, and I do not know how the Right can avoid responding in kind. The essential fabric of self-governance and acceptance of elected authorities has been torn apart this day. What will thrive next are factions of relentless INSURRECTION on both the Left and the Right. We can no longer hope in a cooperation for the common good. Government imposed order with increasing levels of brutality will fill the coming days. And the manipulation of elections with government resources will become so profound that no one will believe fair elections are even possible. Ben Franklin said the country had a republic, if they could keep it. If he is looking down on us now, he will more likely say: “Venezuela says hello!”

    Another Voice in reply to Mark30339. | November 21, 2013 at 10:55 pm

    It was always Obama’s intent to change the way America functioned as a nation. Mission accomplished. Dinesh D’Souza – Obama & 2016 called it and no one believed him.
    Perhaps it time to re-release this movie.

The best way to fight this is having the republican house refuse to fund the government until this is overturned.

Several states have voter ID laws that can protect against election theft. That is …. until a few newly minted federal judges set those laws aside. 2014 can become another Democratic cheat-a-thon and the Republican majority in the Senate doesn’t happen.

Is there any other good reason to do this now? Watch the dockets.

What a short sighted small person he is. It’s simple: if this was done TO his party, and not BY his party, would he be accepting this?

And what an IDIOT : this sets s precedent under law – but it’s all about HIM, and his legacy and his time as Senate Majority Leader.

God – what a mess.

That Harry Reid is a hypocrite is hardly a surprise. He’s part of that 99% of all politicians who are hypocrites, ruining it for the rest.

Reid is the Senate Majority Leader doing what he has to do.

The question is why does he feel he has to do it?

Harry Reid knows Obamacare is not simply a one-time oopsy event, but a major problem that will sprout showers of political bombshells between now and October 2014, by which time tens of millions of Americans will have had their insurance cancelled, premiums & deductibles jacked up, doctors & hospitals restricted, or are moved to part time status or layed off. Doesn’t matter if they get the website humming like a turbine engine, people in the many millions – half or so Democrats – will not be appeased by the ease with which the website now allows their own government to screw them over.

Harry Reid sees the handwriting on the wall and is setting up for the Dems to go freakin’ nuts trying to get as much of their agenda through as possible before they see a new Senate Majority Leader via a new GOP majority. His ‘nuclear option’ today is nothing more than an admission of political defeat.

Beginning January 2017, imagine what a GOP White House, Senate, and House could do without worrying about Democrat filibusters.

I sure wish I could hear the Supreme Court discussions… particularly John Roberts, and the damage he has wrought.

Harry Reid hasn’t backed a winnah! He’s an enforcer.

And, most people don’t care who gets to be a judge. It’s been a political “thing” for ages! Sure. Once an “all white men’s club.” But that’s gone, now.

It’s also true the president gets to fill “bench seats” on the Federal bench. (That’s how you got the stink-o John Roberts.) NONE of Obama’s idiots will outpace John Roberts!

It ain’t “nuclear” for most people. And, it also ain’t the greatest way a politician can pay off contributors!

On par with sending Caroline Kennedy to Japan as an ambassador. Far, far, far, from Camelot.

I’m not betting that voters throw out all the dems. Because they already decided they like the GOP house even less.

Also, no one talks about “da lobbyists.” But “da lobbyists” just took a big bullet over health care! They bought themselves something that hasn’t been digested, yet.

But at some point … given that our “yoots” know more about programming than the old timers … A look at the ObamaCare roll-out may supply years and years of books and commentary.

How, exactly, can you spin an epic fail … that will be associated with giant cost increases … no matter what … And, turn this into a rosy picture? At least Jimmy Carter had peanuts to fall back on.

These corrupt bastards. This will come to haunt them when the lose the Senate to the Tea Party.

Wait till you see THAT party.


Democrat Senator Dianne Feinstein steals over ONE BILLION DOLLARS by insider trading