Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersObama makes 0K for speech at A&E event: report Van Jones: Obama should do ‘poverty tour’ Sanders calls for renewed focus on fighting climate change MORE (I-Vt.) railed against President Obama's tax-cut package in a lengthy floor speech Friday.
Sanders, one of the Senate's leading liberals, is protesting Obama's deal with Republicans, which would extend tax cuts that were initially signed by President George W. Bush in 2001 and 2003.
Sanders began his speech on Friday at 10:24 a.m. and wrapped up just before 7 p.m. He has threatened to filibuster the Obama-GOP deal when it is brought to the Senate floor next week.
"You can call what i am doing today whatever you want, you it [sic] call it a filibuster, you can call it a very long speech ... ," read a message posted on Sanders's Twitter account after he'd taken to the rostrum.
Sanders captured Washington's attention with his old-school filibuster of the tax deal. Media outlets buzzed about his speech and Sanders's name became the sixth most popular topic on Twitter. A nickname for his speech, the "Filibernie," went viral with Beltway reporters.
According to Sanders's office, the Senate TV server was temporarily shut down because of the overwhelming number of people trying to watch.
Sanders has said he will do "whatever it takes" to block the deal, "including a filibuster." His speech Friday covered a variety of topics, including a detailed case for more infrastructure investment, higher corporate tax rates and reducing the federal budget deficit.
The Vermont senator took aim at Wall Street bankers and the wealthy, who he says will be the beneficiaries of the policy.
“How can I get by on one house?” Sanders said. “I need five houses, ten houses! I need three jet planes to take me all over the world! Sorry, American people. We've got the money, we've got the power, we've got the lobbyists here and on Wall Street. Tough luck. That's the world, get used to it. Rich get richer. Middle-class shrinks."
Two Democratic senators, liberal Sherrod BrownSherrod BrownCongress strikes deal on funding for 2017 to avoid shutdown Trump talks big on trade, but workers need action Dems crowd primaries to challenge GOP reps MORE (Ohio) and centrist Mary LandrieuMary LandrieuMedicaid rollback looms for GOP senators in 2020 Five unanswered questions after Trump's upset victory Pavlich: O’Keefe a true journalist MORE (La.), joined Sanders on the floor in colloquy to support Sanders. Both senators have said they oppose the Obama tax plan, and Landrieu called it "almost morally corrupt."
The record for the longest filibuster is held by the late Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-S.C.), who spoke for 24 hours and 18 minutes to block a landmark civil rights bill.
— This post was originally posted at 10:37 a.m.