- The Washington Times - Friday, April 7, 2017

Sens. Chris Coons of Delaware and Susan Collins of Maine are calling Senate leaders to leave the legislative filibuster intact following a drawn-out partisan fight over the rules of the chamber that culminated this week in Republicans ending the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees.

Mr. Coons, a Democrat, and Mrs. Collins, a Republican, plan to deliver a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, and Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer, New York Democrat, urging them to preserve the 60-vote filibuster threshold for legislation.

“What I am hopeful that we will see today and over the next couple of weeks is a strong bipartisan commitment to defend the legislative filibuster — the thing that makes the Senate, the Senate, and not the House,” Mr. Coons said Friday on MSNBC “Morning Joe.”

Senate Republicans changed the rules of Senate Thursday after Democrats, including Mr. Coons, filibustered President Trump’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court.

The move opened the door for Judge Gorsuch to pass on a simple majority vote, as opposed to the 60-vote threshold required to defeat a filibuster, and raised concerns over whether the Senate will also eventually apply the rule change to legislation.

The change followed a series of partisan fights stretching over a decade regarding the way in which the minority party has relied on the filibuster to block the confirmation of executive branch and court judicial nominees.


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