Just because they say they don’t like the bill, doesn’t mean they’ll vote for a filibuster




SEIU compiled some compelling examples of how Democratic Senator Evan Bayh (D-OH) has voted for cloture (i.e., against a filibuster) numerous times, even though in the end he voted against the Democratic legislation itself.

Even Evan Bayh, who said earlier today he doesn’t see “much difference between process and policy at this particular juncture” hasn’t always voted the same way on cloture as on final passage. Here are a few quick examples:

Example 1: In 2008, Evan Bayh voted in favor of a cloture motion on the bill to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, though he opposed the bill itself. “Bayh voted with most Democrats to stop the filibuster because, he said, it was preventing amendments that could have improved the bill.”[Gannett, 6/12/2008; Vote 145, 6/6/2008]

Example 2: In 2005, Senator Bayh voted for cloture on Judge Owen’s nomiation, but against final confirmation. Vote 127, 5/24/05: Senate.gov ; Vote 128, 5/25/05: Senate.gov. Judge Owen, you might recall, was the first nominee to reach the floor after the “Gang of 14” agreements.

Example 3: In 2004, Senator Bayh voted for cloture on the conference report to H.R. 1047, a $388 billion spending bill, then voted against final passage the next day. Vote 214, 11/19/04 ; Vote 215, 11/20/04

And this makes sense. It’s one thing to vote against a bill, especially if the Dems already have the votes to pass it without you. It’s an entirely other thing to vote to sustain a filibuster killing the bill. Depending on how important the bill is to the party – like, say it’s the president’s top initiative for his presidency – the Democratic Senator voting to sustain a filibuster, and kill the bill, could pay a huge price for his vote. That is, if the White House and the Democratic leadership actually make him pay a price.


CyberDisobedience on Substack | @aravosis | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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