Historically, the filibuster was used on a limited basis. For the six year period beginning in 1955 that Lyndon Johnson was the Senate Majority Leader, there was only one time the Senate had to vote to overcome a filibuster, this is also known as a cloture vote. For the six year period beginning in 2006 that Harry Reid has been the Senate Majority Leader, the Senate has taken a cloture vote nearly 400 times in an attempt to overcome a filibuster. In order for a filibuster to end, 60 senators must vote for cloture. This is an extremely high bar which has resulted in many worker friendly pieces of legislation and worker friendly presidential appointments being stalled in the Senate.
There are currently several different Senate rule reforms affecting filibusters proposed. The one that has the most potential for being effective is the “Talking Filibuster Proposal.” This proposal would require the member filibustering or supporters of the filibuster to speak continually to block or delay Senate action. This type of filibuster was used successfully, sparingly, and appropriately for decades before the silent filibuster of today which is over used to create deadlock that results in harm to the American people.
Please take a moment to send an email or call your elected official asking them to support the "Talking Filibuster Proposal".
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, AFL-CIO, CLC
900 Seventh Street, N.W. Washington DC 20001
Telephone: 202-833-7000, Fax: 202-728-7676