| Comments 
| Category: Senate
| 6/19/2008 2:48:31 PM CT
I was watching coverage of the Senate on CSPAN 2 today and stumbled upon what appeared to be yet another Republican filibuster. Senator Jon Kyl (Republican Minority WHIP, Arizona) initially appeared thoughtful and intellectual until Dick Durbin (Democrat, Illinois) objected. At this point Senator Kyl took offense and went into 'Republicans are trying to be bipartisan' mode accusing the Democrats of not working across the table. Dick Durbin succumbed to Senate rules and was granted two minutes to speak until the floor was relinquished back over to the Republicans.
During Senator Durbin's speech, which actually lasted a lot less than the two minutes he was allotted, he countered Senator Kyl's points by referring to a staggering statistic; the Republicans of the US Senate have performed 77 filibusters during the current session. This count breaks the previous record of 58 filibusters previously held by the 1999-2002 Senate terms. Durbin stated, "We are asking to bring it forward for debate. If you have a better idea, put it on the floor and let's vote on it. But for the Republicans to consistently file these filibusters and object to bringing these measures forward to even debate them, and now it is a take it or leave it. The Senator from Arizona has filed, just like the minority leader did yesterday, this political get-well card which says: We will make a unanimous consent request so we are on the record wanting this. Get on the record and vote for bringing it to the floor for debate. Don't be afraid of a debate. Don't be afraid of an amendment. If you have a good idea, put it forward. Let's see if it wins or loses." [Source]
The debate on the current bill, something related to health care and reimbursing doctors for Medicare services, was then pushed under the rug by the next speaker, a Republican from Tennessee. The bottom line is the next time anybody accuses the Democrats of not getting anything done, you can look across the aisle and clearly see why the Senate approval rating is so low.
Senate GOP Sets Filibuster Record
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