Fix the Senate Now

Washington, DC – New analysis from Common Cause highlights two recent “shameful milestones” that the current U.S. Senate should not be celebrating.  Stephen Spaulding of Common Cause writes:

“When the Senate returns today, it should not celebrate two milestones that it surpassed last week.

Fix the Senate Now

Washington, DC – Last November’s modest reforms in the U.S. Senate helped to nudge the upper chamber back toward its traditional norm of providing an up-or-down vote for every qualified nominee.  Yet after an initial spate of confirmations, Senate Republicans have simply recalibrated their obstruction, and are now intent on stalling and delaying votes by refusing to abide by formerly routine practices, such as the granting of unanimous consent.

Fix the Senate Now

Washington, DC – A new story today in Politico highlights growing support for reforming senators’ “blue slip” veto power over judicial nominees:

Fix the Senate Now

Washington, DC – In order to fully realize the potential of last November’s changes to the nominations process, the Fix the Senate Now coalition has been calling for the U.S. Senate to explore additional reforms.

Fix the Senate Now

Washington, DC – A new study from the Brennan Center for Justice makes clear that federal trial courts remain overburdened and understaffed.  While abuse of Senate rules such as the filibuster played a major role in creating this judicial backlog, last November’s reforms to the filibuster for nominations have not fully alleviated the crisis.

Fix the Senate Now

Washington, DC – After several years of unprecedented gridlock and obstruction, the U.S. Senate adopted reforms last November to allow majority votes for most presidential nominees. This important step forward for the chamber permitted the confirmation of over a dozen qualified judicial and executive branch nominees.

Fix the Senate Now

Washington, DC – Last November’s reforms to Senate rules were a step forward that led to an initial round of confirmations for qualified nominees.  A broad range of judicial and executive nominees who had previously been blocked by an obstinate Senate minority were finally brought to up-or-down votes on the Senate floor, enabling them to take their rightful places at the forefront of the Obama Administration and the federal judiciary.

Fix the Senate Now

Despite a strong majority supporting a three-month extension of benefits for the long-term unemployed, a minority of Senators succeeded in filibustering the legislation this afternoon, blocking the measure from clearing the needed 60-vote threshold. Fix the Senate Now issues the following statement on the vote:

Fix the Senate Now

Washington, DC – Last November’s Senate reforms have led to a more productive, responsive, and democratic Senate. Without Senate reform, we likely would still be waiting to confirm three judges to vacancies on the D.C.

Fix the Senate Now

After years of growing gridlock and an increasing inability to keep the Senate operating on even basic and bipartisan issues, the Senate reforms shepherded through by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in November were a step back toward functional democracy. Already, the reforms have led to a spate of confirmations of qualified judicial and executive branch nominees.