Within hours after it became clear that President Obama would re-election and his caucus would add a couple of seats to its majority, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told reporters that he would indeed seek to make changes to the filibuster, a procedural tactic long used in the chamber to block legislation and guard minority rights.
It’s hard to hear in the video below, but the reporter asked Reid, “Do you have any plans to change the filibuster?” Reid replied, “Yes, I do. I’ve said so publicly and I continue to feel that way,” adding, “I think that the rules have been abused and we’re going to work to change them.”
Unlike some of his previous comments, which indicated that he would seek broad reform, perhaps significantly scaling back minority rights in that chamber, Reid explained, “We’re not going to do away with the filibuster but we’re going to make the Senate a more meaningful place.”
Here’s video of his comments:
After the 2010 mid-term, Reid floated changing the rules of the Senate to eliminate the filibuster. And back in May of this year, Reid put eliminating the filibuster back on the table. Reid and Senate Minority Leader McConnell instead reached an agreement that kept the filibuster in place, though Republicans said that they would tone down use of the tactic. That agreement also eliminated “secret holds” on legislation.
Before Tuesday night’s results, Reid issued a statement noting that Senate Democrats would not work with Mitt Romney to pass his “severely conservative” agenda. That’s very hypocritical given all of his complaints about the filibuster.