Palm Beach Daily News
Change the filibuster to protect voting rights
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s argument for not changing or ending the filibuster states is basically that is a tool that protects the democracy and was created for comity. It was not. In 2011, Rob Goodman and Jimmi Soni wrote in The Atlantic: “There’s a reason, after all, that there’s no filibuster written into the Constitution. Our founders had good reason to fear the consequences of a legislature addicted to minority rule.
Sen. Joe Manchin was not always against changing or eliminating the senate filibuster. In 2011, he called for overhauling the filibuster because it “paralyzed” the U.S. and prevented cooperation between the parties. Convenient “amnesia”?
This country has been so polarized for the past five years that the bipartisanship that Sen. Sinema states as a reason to keep the filibuster does not now exist. How many times have Democrats brought bills to the floor with no Republican support?
Right now, Democrats must continue to show voters they are a party of strength and push their positions of being a party for all Americans. The Democrats must not allow Republicans to dictate legislation. It is clear that after the loss in 2020 of the White House, the Congress and the Senate, the GOP is intent on regaining power at any cost, including using the filibuster to block bills that would help their own constituents because the bills were brought to the floor by Democrats.
Without changing or eliminating the filibuster, there will be no check on nationwide Republican-led voter suppression laws that would ensure a their party’s majority in Congress and the Senate, and possibly the White House. Their “agenda” is to regain power and keep it any cost. Republicans will never support voting rights legislation and will continue their obstructionist agenda against everything democratic or any legislation proposed by Democrats.
To ensure equal voting rights, to support future fair and free elections and correctly count every vote cast, the filibuster must be carved out or changed to pass protective voting rights legislation, now. Without this, Democrats could lose control of the House, the Senate and perhaps the White House, and their agenda of helping America will be squashed under boot of a party led by an aspiring autocrat intent on keeping power through fear and bullying and ultimately marking the end of our fledgling democracy.
Mary Ann D’Angio, lives in Boynton Beach.