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You Can’t Support the Filibuster and Hate Executive Action

If people honestly want Congress doing more to set policy, then the filibuster needs to go

The United States is a huge country with serious problems that is part of an ever changing world. Significant technological developments are being made on a regular basis that are reshaping our economy. The federal government needs to respond to shifting realities.

This can either be done by legislation approved by Congress or by executive order. Doing nothing, though, is really not an option when so much is happening.

As long as the filibuster exists in the Senate it assures most things are going to be done by executive order. Getting a majority of the House, a majority of the Senate and the President to agree to a law that the Supreme Court won’t rule against is already a huge set of hurdles to overcome. The process is already “checked” four different ways. Needlessly adding some made up super majority required in the Senate makes the system effective unworkable.

The filibuster doesn’t really empower a Senate minority, so much as it empowers the President who is left with no other choice but executive action.

It takes real chutzpah for the same Republicans who use the filibuster to prevent Obama from adopting policy via legislation to now complain he is bypassing the legislative process.

If people honestly want Congress doing more to set policy, then the filibuster needs to go. I advocated for Democrats eliminating it when they held the Senate and I still want it eliminated now that Republicans are taking over. It would take a majority of senators only five minutes to get rid of the filibuster forever.

Photo by Phil Roeder under Creative Commons license

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Jon Walker

Jon Walker

Jonathan Walker grew up in New Jersey. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 2006. He is an expert on politics, health care and drug policy. He is also the author of After Legalization and Cobalt Slave, and a Futurist writer at