Thomas Oatway | Time to End the Filibuster

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor

The Democrats have been delusional about the need to retain the filibuster in case the Republicans win the House and Senate in 2022. The filibuster will not protect against another authoritarian president like Donald Trump. Let’s get rid of the filibuster.

The filibuster is not a concept specified in the Constitution. It was envisioned as a rule to encourage discussion and compromise between political factions in the Senate. This ship has sailed. The 60-vote requirement is a tool used to oppose the other party in all respects. When was the last time that the filibuster was a factor in open discussion of issues leading to consensus legislation on any important issue? Let’s get rid of the filibuster.

Republicans are installing MAGA followers of the Big Lie in state legislatures, state executives, election supervision and school boards. State laws are enacted to suppress voting by opposition party loyalists, especially minority voters. Election results can be overturned by MAGA Republicans who do not like the results of voter choices. This spells the end of our democratic experiment. A simple majority vote in the Senate is needed to enact a new Voter Rights Act to replace the one that was eviscerated by the Roberts Supreme Court in 2013. Let’s get rid of the filibuster.

Abortion rights were for a time protected by the Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade. This ship has sailed. Texas and other states are enacting laws that restrict federal law. They render the Supreme Court decisions as political opinions that can be overturned by a later court decision that does not recognize prior law. This current Supreme Court is allowing the Texas law to proceed. This despite the polls that show voters support Roe by over 70% majority. Vigilante justice will prevail if an abortion provider or anyone else participates in an abortion procedure. Let’s get rid of the filibuster.

Now we hear that California is proposed to be a “sanctuary state” for abortions that are not permitted in other states. And the procedures, plus the travel expenses, will be covered by California taxpayers. We need Supreme Court reform, including term limits, and perhaps expansion of the number of members. The Senate 60-vote threshold must be junked. Let’s get rid of the filibuster.

We need legislation on immigration reform, which is opposed by the MAGA Republicans. Let’s get rid of the filibuster.

Thomas Oatway


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