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Join the fight to fix the filibuster

Yes, I'll stand with Jeff Merkley in this important fight. Count me in!

Historians call the Senate the "world's greatest deliberative body." But nothing could be further from the truth today. The Senate has become an utterly dysfunctional institution where debate is scarce and obstruction runs rampant. At the heart of Senate dysfunction is the filibuster, a tool that was once important but rare - and is now abused by those who simply want to obstruct.

Just last week, all 41 Republicans signed a letter vowing to filibuster every bill unless the Senate gives bonus tax cuts to millionaires and billionaires. The minority party is saying loud and clear that they're ready and willing to abuse the filibuster if it means they can hand $100,000 bonus checks to the wealthiest Americans at the expense of working families. These obstructionist games have to end.

The Senate should get back to the role it historically played: deliberating over ideas, weighing proposals, and voting, up or down.

So that the Senate will once again be a deliberative body that helps address rather than exacerbates the country's challenges, I call on the Senate to adopt rules changes to:

  1. Make the filibuster real. Require Senators who filibuster to stay on the floor and explain to the American people why they think they are right and a majority of Senators are wrong.

  2. End filibusters that serve no purpose other than delay. In recent years, Republicans have regularly filibustered measures that ultimately pass unanimously, because each filibuster delays the work of the Senate about a week. Senators don't need multiple chances to filibuster the same bill.

  3. Bring deliberation back to the floor of the Senate. Ensure that Senators of both parties have the chance to offer amendments and have those amendments voted on without giving any one Senator veto power.

It’s time to stop the delays and the obstruction. Please join me in this fight.

Jeff Merkley

Posted by Jeff Merkley on December 9, 2010.
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Meet Jeff Merkley

Jeff Merkley was born in the small town of Myrtle Creek, Oregon, the son of a sawmill worker.Jeff Merkley and Family As an advocate and a state legislator, he always fought hard for working families in Oregon. And now, as U.S. Senator, he's working every day for families in Oregon and across the country.

His progressive commitment is clear - working for economic recovery and family-wage jobs, clean energy that puts Americans to work and combats the climate crisis, affordable health care for all Americans. Learn more about Jeff Merkley.

Connect with Jeff Meet Jeff Merkley

Jeff Merkley was born in the small town of Myrtle Creek, Oregon, the son of a sawmill worker. As an advocate and a state legislator, he always fought hard for working families in Oregon. And now, as U.S. Senator, he's working every day for families in Oregon and across the country.

His progressive commitment is clear - working for economic recovery and family-wage jobs, clean energy that puts Americans to work and combats the climate crisis, affordable health care for all Americans. Learn more about Jeff Merkley.