Friday, April 20, 2012

Dear media: Tell readers the truth about GOP filibustering - Jonathan Bernstein - Plum Line - The Washington Post

The founders did not contemplate constitutional amendment by minority obstructionism.  They opted for future majorities to ratify treaties and to overurn a Presidential veto.  They never imaginged, nor did anyone until Mitch McConnell implemented it to wreck Barack Obama's legislative agenda that everything would require a60 vote super-majority, effectively amending the constitution by making the filibuster routine.  Technically it is a vote to cut off debate - a cloture' vote. As implemented by today's GOP it makes the Senate a chamber where the majority cannot rule. - GWC
Dear media: Tell readers the truth about GOP filibustering - The Plum Line - The Washington Post
by Jonathan Bernstein
"The death-by-filibuster of the Buffett Rule in the Senate yesterday revealed, among other things, that the news media still has a ways to go in learning how to report on the era of the 60-vote Senate.
Most Americans, not surprisingly, do not realize that majorities can no longer get their way in the Senate. After all, it wasn’t that long ago that most key votes in the Senate were based on simple majority voting. Only since 1993 has constant filibustering been common, and only in 2009 did Republicans create a situation in which virtually everything requires a supermajority. Reporting in these circumstances is a bit tricky, but if you are going to tell the full story of a bill killed by filibuster, you need to report not just the outcome — a bill lost — but that majority sentiment was thwarted by a minority.
So, how did the major papers do yesterday? Neither the New York Times nor the Washington Post had the word “filibuster” in their on-line front page headlines or teaser"

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