Wisconsin’s freshman U.S. Senator is joining a push for filibuster reform. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) is co-sponsoring a proposal that would restore the traditional rules and require opponents of a bill to keep talking if they want to delay a vote.
Jay Heck of Wisconsin Common Cause says those rules have been watered down so much in the last few years that it takes very little effort to block a bill from even getting a vote. He says it defeats the purpose of majority rule, since it essentially requires 60 votes to begin debating a measure on the Senate floor.
AUDIO: Jay Heck, Common Cause (:19)
Heck says the public often does not even know who is holding up a vote, because of how the rules are currently written. The rules changes backed by Baldwin would require the opponent of a bill to identify themself if they want to block a bill.
Heck argues the current lenient rules are a big reason that the Senate has not voted on a budget over the last several years.
Rick Schuh, WHBY