President Biden on Thursday called on the Senate to carve out an ‘exception’ to the filibuster as a means to codify abortion rights into law following the Supreme Court’s ruling to overturn Roe v. Wade.
“The most important thing to be clear about is I believe we have to codify Roe v. Wade in the law, and the way to do that is to make sure the Congress votes to do that,” Biden told reporters at a NATO summit in Spain.
“And if the filibuster gets in the way, it’s like voting rights, it should be we provide an exception for this, requiring an exception to the filibuster for this action to deal with the Supreme Court decision,” he added.
One reporter openly wondered if Biden, whose popularity is at record lows and who has struggled to coalesce his party around any significant policy achievements, is the best messenger.
“Yeah, I am,” he snapped back. “I’m the president of the United States of America. That makes me the best messenger.”
Biden: “I am the President of the United States of America. That makes me the best messenger … I’m the only president [progressives] got.” pic.twitter.com/oCoux2XHmO
Biden Wants to End Filibuster to Codify Abortion Rights
It’s no mystery as to why President Biden is seeking a filibuster ‘carveout’ to force abortion legislation into law.
The filibuster is designed to prolong debate and delay or prevent a vote on a bill. Ending debate requires the agreement of three-fifths (60) of Senators, or in today’s Congressional makeup – 10 Republicans would have to join the majority party.
Eliminate the filibuster, and suddenly a bill to codify abortion rights into law requires 50 votes in a Senate divided 50-50, with Vice President Kamala Harris giving the tie-breaking vote to the Democrats.
Senators Manchin and Sinema won’t dump the filibuster because they know just how crazy and tyrannical the rest of their party will get if they do.
Fortunately, however, it turns out Biden isn’t the best messenger to eliminate the filibuster, with the idea already having been nixed.
Democrat Senators Joe Manchin (WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (AZ) have, as they have consistently, vowed to protect the filibuster. And Biden’s comments haven’t swayed them one bit.
The Daily Mail reports that the pair’s offices reached out to them and Manchin’s said “the West Virginia Democrat’s position had not changed in light of the president’s new comments,” while Sinema’s referred them to a previous statement, a statement which reveals the filibuster has actually been used in the past to protect pro-choice legislation.
“Protections in the Senate safeguarding against the erosion of women’s access to health care have been used half-a-dozen times in the past ten years, and are more important now than ever,” Sinema said.
Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s office says the Democratic senator is still opposed to gutting the filibuster on any topic including on reproductive rights.
It’s important to note that when President Biden, Democrats, and the media use phrases like ‘carveout’ and ‘exception,’ they’re trying to create the illusion that this is the only time they’ll consider scrapping the filibuster.
In fact, it seems quite clear they’ll use it for nearly every platform they’d like to get passed in the Senate and squash the ability of the minority to stand in their way.
In January, the same man talking about an ‘exception’ to codify Roe v. Wade into law delivered an angry speech calling on the Senate to change the filibuster in an effort to get Democrat voting reform legislation rammed through Congress with a simple majority.
He was so adamant about nixing the filibuster that he said anybody refusing to support voting reform was equivalent to being a segregationist or Confederate.
Joe Biden said during this speech that people who disagree with his bill to federalize elections are “domestic enemies” and are on the side of George Wallace, Bull Connor, and Jefferson Davis.
If Manchin and Sinema were to cave on this ‘carveout,’ do you think Democrats would revisit the voting reform bill?
And while those two Democrats have remained opposed to scrapping the filibuster, it’s important to remember that an ‘exception’ was made back in December after 14 Republicans joined in offering a one-time exception to suspend the filibuster, allowing Democrats exclusively to vote in favor of raising the debt ceiling.
That move led Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) to refer to Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) as “Biden’s bitch.”
Biden’s support for eliminating the filibuster is part of his new evolution since becoming President and being yanked to the extreme left by a party that is currently dominated by radicals.
In 2005, Biden called the nuclear option to weaken the filibuster an “arrogance of power,” and said eliminating it “would undermine the protections of a minority point of view” and have “long-term consequences.”
In 2019, President Biden called ending the filibuster a “very dangerous thing to do.”
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