The Norman Transcript

Editorials

February 11, 2013

Deal won’t solve problem

NORMAN — Senate leaders last week reached a tentative deal to limit the filibuster — a tool that has been abused to the point of creating gridlock in Congress.

It’s difficult to get excited about the compromise reached between Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and his counterpart, Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., but it is at least a step toward reform.

The deal will only bar filibusters on motions to begin debating bills and only if members of each party are guaranteed the opportunity to offer at least two amendments. Some argue all the deal really does is speed up the process of breaking a filibuster with 60 votes. That could actually be counterproductive by legitimizing the idea that a 60-vote threshold is needed to pass any legislation in the Senate.

Many of those desiring real reform had hoped a deal would return filibustering to what it once was, when minority members who opposed a bill could take to the floor and talk for as long as they wanted. (Now, one senator can anonymously halt legislation and no one has to take to the floor.)

Some reformers had hoped Reid would use the so-called “nuclear option” and override GOP opposition by changing the filibuster rule on a simple majority vote. But Reid refused to take that drastic approach.

The filibuster was intended to give the minority a chance to weigh in on legislation without being ignored by the majority. It was never intended to require a super-majority vote on all legislation.

— The Free Press, Mankato, Minn.

For local news and more, subscribe to The Norman Transcript Smart Edition, or our print edition.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Editorials
  • State, local jobmarkets look up

    A tight labor market is often a big problem for economic development professionals. They need to be able to promise companies that there are willing workers in the community’s labor pool....

    July 26, 2014

  • Be careful out in the heat

    This week’s triple-digit temperatures are contributing to heat-related illnesses. The state health department’s Injury Prevention Service reminds Oklahomans of the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke....

    July 25, 2014

  • Get smart on crime

    It’s no secret that prison guards have become the frontline mental health case workers in Oklahoma prisons. Accessing mental health services outside of prison is tough but even harder behind the walls....

    July 25, 2014

  • Quite the resilient bunch

    The people of Moore are a resilient bunch. They’ve bounced back from tornadoes before, but the current renaissance may be the quickest yet. FEMA officials said it would take two years to see some sense of normalcy. That’s hardly the case....

    July 24, 2014

  • A fresh start for VA

    All of us have high hopes for the confirmation and success of Veterans Affairs Secretary nominee Robert McDonald. If confirmed — and most believe he’s a shoe-in — McDonald will take over a paralyzed system of health care that is not ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Call up National Guard

    We’re not sure it will help, but you have to hand it to Texas Gov. Rick Perry. He deployed up to 1,000 Texas National Guard troops to help secure his state’s border with Mexico this week....

    July 23, 2014

  • It’s only getting worse

    Conditions for children in Oklahoma were starting to look up for a few years, according to the annual Kids Count reports. Now we know it wasn’t getting better. The recession was impacting the rest of the country, dropping their scores....

    July 23, 2014

  • Noting a life well lived

    James Garner never intended to be a movie and television star. He just kind of lucked into it, he would tell those who asked. If you have the itch to act, get a good-paying job and spend your free time at your local community theater, he ...

    July 22, 2014

  • Recount that really matters

    Americans have been hearing a lot about Congressional elections, but there’s another one halfway around the globe that will matter far more....

    July 22, 2014

  • Runoffs get no respect

    The Aug. 26 Republican runoff election for the Cleveland County District 3 commissioner post is one of only 18 races on ballots around the state. Only two races are statewide — the Democrat contests for U.S. Senator nominee and state ...

    July 22, 2014