51 Votes is the New 60 Votes

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
July 26 2011 4:19 PM

51 Votes is the New 60 Votes

The Cut, Cap, and Balance Coalition sends out a memo reiterating that it opposing the Boehner plan. Not news. The end of the memo, however, elicits cries of "whuh?"

We urge Senate Majority Leader Reid to reconsider the tabled bill and let the Senate debate it fully, in full view of the American people -- so that it may garner the four or five votes that it needs to pass -- and to agree that it should pass without invoking the 60 vote cloture threshold in recognition of the urgency of the matter.
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See, this is a problem with some conservative arguments about the debt limit -- they depend on reporters locating laser scalpals and removing their brains. Democrats can't confirm a judge, move a Commerce Secretary nominee, or raise taxes because their plans get filibustered -- but pretty please, they should waive the filibuster for now?

It's not just the CCB activists saying this. Earlier today, Rep. Scott Garrett, R-NJ, reminded reporters that the plan was tabled, but not killed -- hey, it could come back again for a full vote, if the Democrats weren't cowardly enough to stop it! Taking this seriously requires forgetting the last 10 years of Senate history.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter.