Neil McCabe

The truth is that the Republican Senate leadership has been Reid’s silent partner in the destruction of the filibuster. On hundreds of occasions more than any other leader, Reid has conflated the Senate’s two-step voting process to diminish the filibuster with unforced concurrence of the Senate Minority Leader Mitchell McConnell Jr.

For all the hype, the filibuster is merely the prolonging of debate, so the first step in Senate voting is to end debate, which before Reid went nuclear, required 60 votes. The second vote on the actual measure at-hand required a simple majority.

Under the Reid-McConnell regime, those steps became one vote with a 60-vote threshold, but with a parliamentary escape hatch that allowed Reid to recall failed measures back to be reconsidered with the simple majority requirement at his discretion.

Thus killed measures, such as the ban on military-style long guns or government approval of all firearm transfers are the undead waiting for Reid’s signal to return to the Capitol like zombies.

Republican grandees have told us not to be afraid of a world without the filibuster. Why? Well, because the GOP will retake the Senate in 2014 and the White House in 2017 and the Democrats will have to watch powerlessly as Republicans wield the unchecked power Reid gave them.

Well, my brothers and sisters, is not hope as a strategy, rather is it delusion as a strategy.

Just as it is worthless to live in the past, it is a fool’s errand to predict the future, let alone count on the future to do all your work for you.

Coach Allen was right as rain when he said the future is now.

The GOP’s rollover and play dead act might amuse some, but for conservatives it is another betrayal and mistake.


Neil McCabe

Neil W. McCabe is a journalist working in Washington. He was a senior reporter for the Human Events newspaper and for many years a reporter for The Pilot, Boston's Catholic paper. In 2009, he deployed to Iraq with the Army as a combat historian for 15 months.