Trump: Ending the filibuster would be ‘catastrophic’ for Republican Party
Former President Trump is warning Republicans that any effort to abolish the Senate filibuster would cause irreparable damage to the party.
During an interview on the podcast “The Truth with Lisa Boothe,” Trump discussed Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and his attempts to fight off talk from progressives to eliminate the longstanding filibuster rule.
“Look, he’s hanging by a thread right now with respect to the filibuster,” Trump said of McConnell.
“And if they get the filler, he’s hanging on [Democratic Sen.] Joe Manchin, who always goes with the Democrats. Joe talks, but he ends up going with the Democrats. Now there’s another great senator from the state of Arizona. He’s hanging by a thread and if they get rid of the filibuster, if they knock it out, it will be catastrophic for the Republican Party.”
McConnell and the GOP have given similar warnings about eliminating the filibuster rule, a provision that allows the minority party in the upper chamber to force an unfettered debate on any issue before a vote.
“Let me say this very clearly for all 99 of my colleagues: Nobody serving in this chamber can even begin, can even begin, to imagine what a completely scorched-earth Senate would look like,” McConnell said last week on what it could look like in the upper chamber if Democrats eliminate the filibuster. “I want our colleagues to imagine a world where every single task, every one of them, requires a physical quorum.”
Members of both parties have used the rule for decades to block legislative pushes from the opposite side of the aisle. The Senate requires 60 votes to end a filibuster and move to a vote. Currently, both parties have 50 senators, with Vice President Harris serving as a tiebreaking vote for Democrats.
President Biden, who spent more than three decades in the Senate, last week signaled support for the “talking” filibuster.
“You had to stand up and command the floor and you had to keep talking along,” Biden said of past rules requiring someone to continuously hold the floor to keep a filibuster from being broken. “Once you stopped talking, you lost that and someone could move in and say, I move to the question of. You’ve got to work for the filibuster. It is almost getting to the point where democracy is having a hard time functioning.”
Trump has been critical of GOP leadership since his 2020 election loss, painting McConnell as “weak” and saying the party should seek new leadership more supportive of his policies.
“But if you look at what happened in the election, Mitch McConnell should’ve fought. You know, he did nothing. He should’ve fought. They should’ve fought. That could never have, that could never have happened to a Democrat,” Trump told Boothe.
“What happened to us with the presidential election could never have happened to the Democrats. You would have had a revolution if the tables were turned, you would have literally had a revolution. And guys like Mitch McConnell, they don’t fight. And now he’s hanging by a thread. He’s hanging by a thread.”