That handshake filibuster compromise between Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky must be a bad idea. Both sides hate it.
A blogger at Huff Post claimed it squanders Obama’s mandate. “This flaccid filibuster ‘reform’ will prove to be one of the biggest political errors of the Obama years. For the U.S. Senate, after a hard-fought election where a Democratic president won re-election and Democrats picked up seats, this cloakroom deal (coupled with the GOP’s control of the House) ensures that Obama will be forced to govern like a lame duck,” Joseph Palermo huffs.
But over at Heritage Foundation’s blog The Foundry, a blogger complains the deal creates four super senators and super-super majority leader. “Only four Senators would be able to offer amendments to legislation, effectively shutting out the other 96 from the legislative process …” writes Amy Payne. “The Majority Leader (now Reid) would have the special authority to add an amendment after debate is finished on a particular bill. Combined with the 51-vote threshold, this change would allow the Majority Leader to jam through just about anything without the Senate even debating it.
Payne then concludes, “In short, this is a terrible plan that would hand all of the Senate’s power to four people and would turn the Majority Leader into a tyrant.”