Abolish the filibuster - The Washington Post
In the fourth quarter of his presidency, Obama unbound is abusing presidential authority at will to secure a legacy on everything fromenvironmental regulation to immigration, the laws of which he would unilaterally suspend.
But there is a way out for the GOP. Go bold. Go nuclear. Abolish the filibuster. Pass the bill and send it to the president.
On policy, Obama has repeatedly usurped congressional power, most egregiously with an executive amnesty for illegal immigrants that for four years he himself had insisted was unlawful (a view given significant support this week in a federal district court).
As for procedure, then-majority leader Reid (D-Nev.) went nuclear in November 2013 when he abolished the filibuster for presidential appointees and judicial nominees (below the Supreme Court). He did it to pack the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals with liberals. The nation’s liberal chorus cheered. “Elections are supposed to have consequences,” read one typical commentary. “It was time to push the button.” Boom.
My problem was the egregious way Reid changed the rule: by a simple majority, 52-48, with zero Republicans onboard (and three Democrats defecting). As I wrote at the time, “If a bare majority can change the fundamental rules that govern an institution, then there are no rules.”
Reid went first. Time for Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to finish the job. Push the button. Abolish the filibuster.
Then immediately pass the House homeland security bill and send it to the president. He is likely to veto it, but the politics will have been radically changed. The current story line is: Republican Congress won’t fund DHS, threatening to shut it down. New story line: Obama vetoes funding for DHS, threatening to shut it down.