What Was That Word?
It's quite impressive how when the minority party's name began with D regular Senate actions were described as "obstructionism" or as "filibusters," while since the minority party's name started to begin with an R all the news consuming public has learned that fact of life that every Senate action requires 60 votes.
Actually, Atrios, and all who may be concerned, the new word or words for "obstructionism" and "filibuster" and "up and down vote" is "Republican procedural hurdle".
From Reuters (h/t Josh Marshall):
Democrats have all but publicly acknowledged that they will be unable to pass their end-the-war amendment because opposition Republicans are insisting on 60 votes for a victory.
Reid said that without the Republicans' procedural hurdle, a simple majority of the 100-member Senate would vote for the troop withdrawal, with "a number of Republicans" supporting it.
The way Reuters wrote up the story, it appears as if it is Harry Reid who is identifying the Republican filibuster and obstructionism as a "procedural hurdle". But is that what Reid actually said?
From Think Progress: (h/t Atrios)
Republicans are using a filibuster to block us from even voting on an amendment that could bring the war to a responsible end. They are protecting the President rather than protecting our troops.
They are denying us an up or down — yes or no — vote on the most important issue our country faces.
I would like to inform the Republican leadership and all my colleagues that we have no intention of backing down.
If Republicans do not allow a vote on Levin/Reed today or tomorrow, we will work straight through the night on Tuesday.
The American people deserve an open and honest debate on this war, and they deserve an up or down vote on this amendment to end it.
As Josh Marshall accurately notes, the media's (non) response to Republican filibustering and obstructionism is a classic case of bamboozlement:
This is pretty funny. This article from Reuters manages to get through an entire article on the filibuster the Democrats are going to force senate Republicans to go through with without ever actually using the word 'filibuster'. It's almost a thing of beauty in its negative capacity of bamboozlement.
Finally, Bob Geiger, gives us a practical, one-sentence summary response of the issues involved: (h/t Atrios)
And I'm sure more than one Democratic Senator will remind the public that Republicans screamed at the top of their lungs last year when it came to getting up-or-down votes on Bush's right-wing judicial nominees, but expressing the sentiments of most Americans and protecting America's troops gets no such treatment from them.