Thursday, January 11, 2007

GOP "Flip Flop" on the Filibuster

In 2005, Senate Republicans caused a raucus when Democrats attempted to filibuster several of President Bush's judicial nominees. Shortly after Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, William Rehenquist, passed away, former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, assuming Democrats would filibuster any appointment made by President Bush, labeled the use of the filibuster as a "formula for tyranny by the minority."

During the debacle, many Republicans agreed with Frist's decision to invoke the "nuclear option", including former Senators Rick Santorum and George Allen, as well current Senators Lamar Alexander, Thad Cochran, along with many others.

But how quickly things change when the Republicans are voted into the minority.

From The Washington Post:

"President Bush's decision to deploy 21,500 additional troops to Iraq drew fierce opposition Thursday from congressional Democrats, but the Senate's top Republican threatened a filibuster to block any legislation expressing disapproval of the plan."

Back when the debate to end the filibuster was raging, Democrats (including Harry Reid) made the point that this "nuclear option" would one day come back to bite them in the foot, had they gone through with it. Apparently, the entire debate was nothing more than rhetoric, since one of the first action's of the minority Republicans is to revert to using the filibuster to achieve their own agenda. Does this qualify as "tyranny by the minority?"

UPDATE: According to right-wing bloggers, McConnell has stated he fully expects the support of Holy Joe in the filibuster. So much for caucusing with the Democrats.