So maybe not a "slam", but you defended the action Reid actually took, while calling the same action "dumb" if McConnell did it. Which I found kinda strange.
Because you're illiterate? I mean, the same thread also says:
I previously wrote:
Although, yes, eliminating it during his tenure would have been dumb since he still wouldn't have gotten Senate legislation past the House. Eliminating it for confirming appointments wasn't dumb since the Senate could act alone.
And the same thread also says:
Me previously wrote:
If you're only looking at this from an extremely short term point of view, I suppose you have a point. The act of eliminating it for anything at all establishes that it can be eliminated. Period. What you did it for really doesn't matter. The point is that Reid established that precedent.
Are you illiterate? The change made and precedent set is far more broad reaching than the handful of appointments that were gained. Reid acted stupidly for an incredibly short term gain.
Is that really hard to understand? Reid's choice won him some political fights. You can have your own opinions on whether or not it was worth it, but you can't deny the simple fact that Reid's change got him results. McConnell changing the filibuster rules on legislation would win him absolutely nothing since Obama would just veto the same legislation. Plus, should Democrats retake the Senate in 2016, he'd be kind of stuck.
Again, as I stated earlier, you're missing the forest for one very small tree.
I'm not disagreeing that it would be dumb for McConnell to change the filibuster rules. My point is that it was also dumb when Reid did it. The dumbness is not changed because he won some incredibly minor political battles. The dumbness of what he did so completely overshadows that benefit. It's like saying that it would be dumb to hit yourself in the head with a hammer unless there was a fly on the side of your head that you'd kill in the process. Um... It's still really really really dumb.
Reid's actions got him gains, McConnell's would get him zero gains.
Reid's gains didn't come close to making up for the cost though. That's the point you seem to be missing.
It was not "just as dumb" for Reid to do the same...
Um... Ok. I'll grant that there was some incredibly tiny fraction less dumb when Reid did it. But still dumb. Really really dumb. Your inability to acknowledge this is what I find amusing. Is it really so hard to just say "Yeah. Reid should not have done that, because the appointments gained don't nearly make up for the precedent he set by doing that". Really? It was a bad idea, taken for a really bad reason.
I'll also point out (again) that we're comparing a hypothetical on one side against an actual decision that was made on the other. McConnell is not going to change the filibuster rules, even if a couple of house Republicans make headlines for themselves by asking for it. He's not going to do so for two reasons:
1. It would set an even worse precedent than that set by Reid, effectively taking the next step in the slippery slope, and losing the high ground on the issue.
2. It would just result in a presidential veto. Which is kind of a wash given that there's political value in forcing the president to veto it, but there's just as much value in forcing the Dems to filibuster. So... Not really much of a point actually.
Reason number 1 is about 100,000 times more important than reason 2 for the GOP. Even if the GOP held the white house right now, he still wouldn't change the rules. Because the whole issue with filibusters and vetoes is about public perception and support. The reason the Dems changed the rules is because the public was largely behind the GOP on the issues (and appointments) they filibustered. The Dems failed to bring public opinion to bear to force the GOP to relent, and thus resorted to changing the rules to get what they wanted in the face of public opinion (sounds like a pattern the left has fallen into).
The GOP has no need to change the rules because we've largely got public support on our side. When we pass something and the Dems filibuster it, we get to go to the public and say that it's the Dems preventing something from being passed, and this actually will hurt the Dems more than the GOP (kinda like the whole shutdown thing your party tried). That's the key issue here. Those tools work when the public supports them. They exist largely because 100% of issues and positions held by the voters can never align perfectly with political parties. So just because the public voted in a majority to one party or the other does not mean that the public agrees with every platform position of that party. The opposing party can then use filibuster and/or veto to prevent those unpopular things from passing and can do so without harming their own political prospects. If they use it to block stuff the public wants, then it hurts them politically. If they use it to block stuff the public does not want, it helps them.
This is why the GOP doesn't need to change or break the rules, but your party does. The Dem agenda has been on the wrong side of public support for at least the last 15 years. And the more your guys manipulate rules in order to get what you want even when the public opposes it, the worse it'll get. Edited, Feb 18th 2015 6:23pm by gbaji