Harry Reid Escalates Filibuster Showdown Over Judges | TPMDC:
by Sahil Kapur
Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) told a Nevada radio station Friday that if the Republican minority doesn’t stop abusing the filibuster, the Senate will ultimately devolve into a majority-rule body like the House of Representatives.
“It’s been abused, and if it continues to be abused, I am confident the rules will be changed,” he said on KNPR, declaring that while it isn’t his preference to end the super-majority rule in the Senate, “unless these characters who are filibustering literally everything — unless they change — I think that’s where we’re headed.”
Reid said that for now, “the one category we’re looking at very closely” is President Obama’s nominees to fill three vacant seats on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals and, which he argued “is, some say, more important than the Supreme Court.”
“We’re focusing very intently on the D.C. Circuit,” he said. “We need at least one more [seat filled]. There’s three vacancies. And that will switch the majority. So we’re working on it.”
The Democratic leader made clear that his aim is to shift the ideological balance of power on the influential circuit court, which often has the final word on the limits of executive power, and has invalidated various actions by President Obama on issues like labor regulations, environmental regulations and recess appointments.
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