Rachel Maddow took viewers through the litany of statements made by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid about the need to reform the filibuster rules to prevent the Republican minority from forcing 60 votes on every single bill, but as she noted, what ended up passing this Thursday was nothing that anyone could consider any type of meaningful reform.
About the only issue I'd take with Rachel's reporting on the subject is that I'm not sure if it's fair to lay all of the blame at Reid's feet, or if it's what I believe is a more likely scenario, which is that he'd have gladly signed onto the reforms himself if he thought he had the votes within his own caucus, which he did not. If that is the case, I'd like to know which Senators he was dealing with that refused to go along with stopping the unprecedented obstruction we've seen from the Republicans since Barack Obama was elected president.
And in regard to the failure to pass any new reforms now, as long as Democrats do not control the House, it's not like there is going to be any actual progressive legislation making it through our Congress that Senate Republicans would be blocking. It would make a big difference with nominees and treaties being held up (which I don't want to minimize) to get the rules changed now, but if Democrats were going to reform the filibuster rules, it would have made a real difference when they had control of the House as well and they refused to do it then. I'm disgusted but not shocked that they didn't do anything about it now as well, given their track record.
I've read jokes about the day Al Franken finally got sworn in being the worst day of Harry Reid's life because they couldn't use the Republicans as an excuse any more for not getting anything done in the Senate. I think we're seeing right now that we're not going to have any reforms as long as we've got a bunch of Democrats mucking up the works who are not much better than their counterparts on the right.
Here's more from Ezra Klein on the latest: Harry Reid: “I’m not personally, at this stage, ready to get rid of the 60-vote threshold”: