RUSH: Hugh in Jacksonville, Florida. Great to have you on post-Election Day EIB. How are you, sir?
CALLER: Very fine, sir. Thank you for taking my call.
RUSH: You bet.
CALLER: It sounds like you’re as happy today as I am with what happened last night. But here’s my question. Last year the Democrat Congress changed the rules with regard to judicial appointments eliminating the filibuster. My question I’d like your thoughts on is when the new Republican Senate comes in in January, why don’t they up the ante and say, all right, no more filibusters for any vote in the Senate. Everything will be a straight up-or-down vote? If one side can do it, the other side can do it, too.
RUSH: I understood about half of what you said. It wasn’t your fault. It’s the phones.
CALLER: I’m sorry, sir?
RUSH: You basically want the Republicans to do what the Democrats did and just broom the filibuster and give them a taste of their own medicine?
RUSH: Yeah. I don’t know what the Republicans are gonna do. I heard a comment last night about this, and it was from our old buddy George Will on the Fox News Channel. And it was an interesting comment. George Will said that a lot of Democrats are not all that upset because they are confident that the Republicans will reinstitute all of the rules that Harry Reid changed and make the Senate a deliberative body again, which would give the Democrats a voice. And he said, truth be told, that there are gonna be a lot of Democrats tomorrow morning, even if they lose the Senate, that are not gonna be that unhappy.
Now, his point was this: Harry Reid, because of rules changes and a number of things, there hasn’t been a deliberative legislative action occurring in the Senate in two years. Three years. Harry Reid did this to protect Obama. It is a well-known fact: Barack Obama has not been popular as president for at least two years, and maybe more.
Harry Reid changed the Senate rules. A lot of them, not just the filibuster rules. He changed a number of rules. Republicans have not been allowed to submit amendments to legislation. There have not been debates on legislation. There hasn’t been legislation. There have been continuing resolutions on the budget and things like that. But the Senate, under Harry Reid the past three-to-four years, has stopped being a deliberative body.
Every piece of legislation the Republicans passed died in the Senate.
Nothing was ever taken up. This was done purposely by Reid to eliminate any role the Republican Party had whatsoever in the Senate, and to protect Obama. So the Democrats think that the Republicans — like Mitch McConnell and whoever his deputies are — are honorable, and they will reinstitute the rules that Harry Reid wiped out, and they will once again make the Senate a deliberative body.
And the Senate Democrat minority will once again be allowed to submit amendments and participate in debates on the Senate floor about legislation. So they’re not that unhappy, because the theory is that Mitch McConnell will not keep Harry Reid’s rules in place, that they’ll go back to the way it was (even the filibuster stuff) before Reid changed it all. And what our caller is saying is he hopes Mitch doesn’t do that.
He hopes that the Democrats are forced to live under the same limitations and rules changes that they forced on the Republicans.
I am at a loss to predict what’s gonna happen in that regard. If I had to make a guess, it would be that Mitch McConnell — in this ongoing effort to prove that they are willing to work with the Democrats and to compromise and to try to come together on disagreements — will take steps that will empower the Democrat minority more than the Republican minority was, to show what good people they are and what honorable people they are.
That won’t be said. That won’t be the reason. The reason will be to “restore the Senate to its time-honored traditions.” One of the things that has been fascinating about all this stuff that Obama’s been doing extra-constitutionally — enforcing laws, not enforcing them, making them up as he goes — is what would happen if all of these precedents caused the next Republican president to do the same stuff.
The Democrats would have a conniption fit.
And the Republican leaders always said, “Yeah, yeah. This is why the Democrats will never do this stuff because they’ll realize that they’ll lose someday, and we would have the same power over them.” But now, George Will said last night that he’s got I don’t know how many, but a number of Democrats who said:
“Hey, you know, the Senate’s gonna be okay if the Republicans win it because they’re gonna turn it back into what it was always intended to be,” meaning the Democrats will have a voice in the Senate even though it’s a minority voice, unlike the Republicans, who were basically silenced by virtue of Reid’s rules changes.