As we know, Chuck Schumer scheduled a debate on doing a filibuster carveout to pass voting rights this month. When reporters asked for his thoughts about the prospect of reform, Joe Manchin disemboweled a sacrificial animal and read the steaming entrails to divine his own opinion:
“Being open to a rules change that would create a nuclear option,* it’s very, very difficult. It’s a heavy lift,” Manchin told reporters when asked about using the “nuclear option,” in which Democrats would change the 60-vote legislative filibuster on their own.
“I’m talking. I’m not agreeing to any of this. … I want to talk and see all the options we have open,” Manchin said, adding that it was his “preference” that any rule changes have Republican support.
Blah blah blah. No one but his donors know what that lunkhead will do. Chuck Schumer either doesn’t know or is dissembling:
Schumer on changing Senate rules to pass election legislation: "It's an uphill fight. I don't want to give anybody the illusion that we're there. But hopefully we can get 50 of us to come to an agreement."
— Sahil Kapur (@sahilkapur) January 4, 2022
Hopefully he’s right since our democracy literally depends on it. Let’s also hope the president weighs in early and often in this fight. The bully pulpit has its limits, but it’s not nothing.
Meanwhile, Mitch McConnell continued to NOT spontaneously combust and then run screaming and in flames in panicked circles under the Rotunda before collapsing into a smoldering heap due to white hot hypocrisy despite labeling the attempt to create a filibuster carveout to protect elections “genuine radicalism.” He also said this:
Can you add to your reporting that this was objectively part of Trump's plan and that the GOP is now working on the state level to make it happen? pic.twitter.com/dwjtLN7qus
— Magdi Semrau (@magi_jay) January 4, 2022
Good on Semrau for adding that very salient context. As I shared in a comment in the morning thread, I’m not super optimistic that we’ll get voting reform done. But we’ve got to try.
*PS: Fuck whoever came up with the term “nuclear option.” And fuck Manchin for repeating it in this context. I’d have more respect for the man if he said, “Look, the people who funnel millions of dollars into my (and my family’s) pockets think it’s better for business if the US Senate is paralyzed, so the filibuster stays.”