Senate Rules Reform: Udall, Harkin, Merkley Remind Us Why Washington Doesn’t Take Liberals Seriously

By: Wednesday January 26, 2011 12:40 pm

With their total capitulation on Senate rules reform, Sen. Tom Udall (D-MN), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Tom Harkin (D-IA) again remind us why no one in Washington takes liberals seriously. . . and frankly why they shouldn’t. For months, Udall has been promoting the “Constitutional Option,” which would allow the senators to declare the first [...]

Franken Wants to End Filibuster by Vacation

By: Thursday January 6, 2011 2:49 pm

Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) is trying to gain support for a modest proposal to change Senate rules to deal with the issue of filibuster support by proxy. The current arrangement allows Senators to support a filibuster even while on a tropical vacation. The rules regarding cloture in the Senate are unlike almost any other rules [...]

Failed Private Insurance Middlemen: Like Tumors, You’ve Got to Shrink Them or Cut Them Out

By: Thursday April 8, 2010 4:17 pm

Want to see into the future? Look at the ongoing fight over premium increases for policies on the Massachusetts Connector (exchange), and the effort by the state regulator to control prices, and you’ll get a glimpse–because the health care plan just put into law would effectively replicate the Massachusetts health care system in every state. [...]

Budget Reconciliation Instructions: An Incredibly Important, Potentially Powerful Tool for Progressive Change

By: Monday March 29, 2010 11:34 am

With health care and student loan reform passed, one of the next tasks Congress will soon take up is the annual budget. The “budget resolution” is a non-binding resolution by Congress outlining how they plan to spend money. The budget resolution is not law (so doesn’t need to be signed by the President), and, as [...]

Did Harry Reid Use The Public Option To Punk The Democratic Base?

By: Tuesday February 16, 2010 3:12 pm

Today, Sen Michael Bennet (D-CO) sent Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) a letter co-signed by Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Sherrod Brown (D-OH). It asked Reid to add the public option to health care reform using reconciliation. The letter makes the case that a public option is popular, good politics, good policy, [...]