McConnell on filibuster talk: Democrats want to ‘vandalize’ Senate rules

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) unloaded on Democrats Thursday amid renewed chatter about nixing the legislative filibuster if they win back the majority in November.

McConnell, speaking from the Senate floor, noted that some progressives want to expand or reform the Supreme Court and that Democrats, more broadly, are calling for Washington, D.C., to be the 51st state.

“And to accomplish all this, destroying the Senate’s distinguishing feature that makes radical change hard by design. We have an entire political movement that is telling us literally out loud that they’ve lost patience with playing by the rules and may well declare war on the rulebook,” McConnell said.

He added that Democrats were under pressure to “vandalize the rules to pass legislation with a simple majority.”

Democrats are revisiting discussions about possibly reforming the Senate’s filibuster rules, which require 60 votes to overcome procedural hurdles for legislation.

While Democrats are increasingly confident about their chances of winning back the Senate on Election Day, it’s unclear whether they would still be able to lower the 60-vote threshold if they hold a simple majority in 2021. Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Angus King (I-Maine) have indicated they would be opposed to getting rid of the legislative filibuster.

McConnell’s remarks on Thursday come two days after he warned Democrats against nixing the filibuster if they win back the majority.

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) fired back on Thursday that McConnell has been inconsistent on changing the Senate’s rules.

“He’s not a good one to give advice. Leader McConnell has shown that he will change the rules when it suits his purposes and defend the rules when it suits his purposes,” Schumer said.

Tags 2020 elections Angus King Chuck Schumer Filibuster Joe Manchin legislative filibuster Mitch McConnell Senate rules

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