How do you feel about denying the majority a quorum by leaving the chamber?
You will recall that I am fine with that. See Wisconsin thread. And no, I don’t think it is the same thing.
Aren’t they functionally equivalent? They both thwart the will of the majority. Could you explain your rationale or at least link to it please?
I’m not convinced that requiring a 60% approval for a vote is necessarily a bad thing. If you can’t either come up with a compromise that some of the opposition party can agree with or vote in an overwhelming number for your party, then let’s not have that piece of legislation.
Should a slight change in national sentiment from 49/51 to 51/49 cascade into a complete 100% reversal of legislative policy? That seems like an inherently unstable system to me, constantly swinging back and forth passing and repealing laws, etc.
"What We Think of the Fillibuster" sounds like a Parade Magazine cover headline. Or an Onion InfoGraphic.
I’m just busting your chops a little because that sort of “What is our GroupThink?” question bugs me in general, though I think in this instance, it made sense in the context of your entire OP.
Not to speak for Stone, but leaving the chamber to deny a quorum has the effect of the old-timey fillibuster. ALL business comes to a halt. It is, in effect, the nuclear option and thus, is used very sparingly. The US Senate procedural fillibuster is used by Republicans like red Solo cups at a beer pong tournament.
I would enact such a rule immediately if I thought we could get away with it. And so would the Republicans.
But doesn’t leaving the chamber and fleeing the state to deny a quorum to the majority party constitute thwarting the will of the majority?
You think it is the same thing. We get it. No, it is not. A quorum can be set at 50 percent, or whatever the local constitution or bylaws set it as. And yes, I am willing, as mentioned above, to bow my majority principles to constitutional requirements. I don’t see the filibuster as a constitutional requirement. If you want to play a semantic game on the distinction that I am making, then play it on the distinction, not a re-phrasing to your straw man of majoritarianism.
Requiring a quorum is needed to commence and continue business when there is a quorum call. A US Senate filibuster is initiated by one Senator and grinds all business to a halt. Just because they have some of the same features does not mean that they have all the same features. You may wish to compare what the Wisconsin Senate requires as a quorum (I believe it is in the Wis Constitution) to what the US Senate requires as a quorum.
Quorum calls are ordinarily made to prevent the majority from pulling a fast one.
Perhaps my memory does not serve me well, but it seems to me that you and your “conservative” buddies disapproved of the Democrats in Wisconsin withdrawing their quorum, as allowed by the Wis Constitution in that thread.
I’m afraid not. Cloture votes can’t be held until one hour after the start of the 2nd legislative day after the motion was introduced. Nor can the Senate rules be suspended without one day’s written notice except by unanimous consent. See the fifth and twenty-second articles of the Standing Rules of the Senate.
I think it’s fairly similar to the filibuster, in that it’s a legal but unintended side-effect of parliamentary rules. Thus, when one party starts using it to reflexively and automatically block every piece of legislation the majority presents, it will be comparable to how the filibuster is being used today.
In fact, (and again, it’s hard for me to be certain I’m not being 100% partisan here), I think that whole kerfluffle is a good example of something that WOULD be reasonable to filibuster. My understanding is that things went something like this:
(1) Walker campaigns for election on a fairly generic Republican platform of cutting government spending and lowering taxes, etc
(2) Walker is elected
(3) Walker announces he intends to cut collective bargaining rights for public unions
(4) the largest public protests in Wisconsin history (or at least in recent decades) spring up and lots of members of the public occupy the statehouse
(5) Democratic assemblypeople then flee the state, denying quorum
If anything, that’s pretty much a textbook example of a situation where a filibuster (or similar maneuver) IS appropriate.
To the contrary, I said at the time it was a perfectly legitimate tactic.
Because, you see, my standards don’t change based on whose ox is being gored.
Well, it does have a few limits, the cloture vote of 3-5ths being the obvious one.
No, only when unions are involved.