Yesterday, Harry Reid threatened to invoke the so-called nuclear option on the filibuster and change the Senate rules so that only 51 votes were required to overcome a filibuster, rather than 60, unless Republicans agreed to approve several stalled executive branch nominees.
Republican Leader Mitch McConnell stood on the floor yesterday trying to reason with Majority Leader Reid. However nothing seemed to get through to the Nevada Democrat and he persisted with his stance on the nuclear option. The odd thing about it is that all this posturing by Reid is because three of the nominees were appointed illegally according to the National Labor Relations Board.
Senator McConnell in his speech on the floor yesterday laid out the whole situation:
“So let me sum up once what’s going on here: Senate Democrats are getting ready to do permanent damage to this body to confirm three unconstitutionally appointed nominees by a simple majority vote. If this isn’t the definition of a power grab, I don’t know what is: the President appoints three people unconstitutionally. The second highest court in the land confirms that they were unlawfully appointed. And Senate Democrats want to break the rules of the Senate to confirm them. This isn’t the story that Democrats like to tell, but it’s the truth. This entire phony crisis boils down to these three unlawful nominees.”
Senator McConnell then tried to explain how in fact Senate Republicans were not actually holding anything up and it is just a false narrative being pushed by desperate Democrats frustrated that they can’t get their illegally appointed nominees confirmed.
“The Democrats say we’re holding up others. It’s not true. The truth is, if there’s anyone to blame for holding things up in the Senate, it’s the Democrat Majority. They’re the ones blocking nearly 30 fast-track nominations, many of which Republicans have already agreed to confirm unanimously. And they’re the ones – Democrats – who have yet to schedule votes on the McCarthy and Perez nominations, despite the fact that both of these highly controversial nominees already have enough votes to clear a 60-vote hurdle.”
Senator McConnell then speculated into the real reasons behind this unlawful power grab that will permanently alter the Senate:
“No, the real reason, as I said, that the Far-Left and Big Labor are leaning hard on Democrats to ‘go nuclear’, and that the Majority Leader is about to sacrifice his reputation and this institution to go along with it, is because what they really want is for the Senate to ratify the President’s unconstitutional decision to illegally appoint nominees to the NLRB and the CFPB without the input of the Senate. They know they can’t get that done under the current rules, and they know time isn’t on their side. The second highest court in the land ruled unanimously that President Obama had no power to do what he did. Another court has since concurred, and now the Supreme Court is set to hear the case in just a few months.”
In conclusion Senator McConnell said:
“So this isn’t really a fight over nominees at all. It’s a fight over these illegal, unconstitutional nominees. It’s just laughable to think that Democrats would ever agree to such a thing if we were talking about a Republican President’s unlawful nominees. And it’s equally irrational to think we’d go along with this. In fact, no Senator, regardless of party, should ever consider ceding our Constitutional duties in such a way.
This whole situation comes down to Senate Democrats attempting to jam down the throat of the Senate Republicans, three unconstitutionally appointed nominees who currently are working in their position illegally according to the NLRB. Something needs to be done. The RNLA yesterday wrote a letter to the Republican Leadership in the Senate laying out the potential damage this nuclear option could cause.