[NOTE FROM MELISSA: I’m leaving this post at the top for awhile, since it’s the big story of the day, and I want to make sure everyone has a chance to see it.]
From Think Progress:
Moments ago, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) announced that in response to conservative obstructionism, he plans to force war supporters to physically remain in the Senate and filibuster Iraq withdrawal legislation.
Reid accused conservatives of “protecting the President rather than protecting our troops” by “denying us an up or down vote on the most important issue our country faces.” He said that if a vote on the Reed/Levin Iraq legislation is not allowed today or tomorrow, he will keep the Senate in session “straight through the night on Tuesday” and force a filibuster. From Reid’s speech:
Republicans are using a filibuster to block us from even voting on an amendment that could bring the war to a responsible end. They are protecting the President rather than protecting our troops.
They are denying us an up or down — yes or no — vote on the most important issue our country faces.
I would like to inform the Republican leadership and all my colleagues that we have no intention of backing down.
If Republicans do not allow a vote on Levin/Reed today or tomorrow, we will work straight through the night on Tuesday.
The American people deserve an open and honest debate on this war, and they deserve an up or down vote on this amendment to end it.
Having meekly allowed the GOP to act as obstructionists on nearly everything Congress has attempted, and with Congress’s approval numbers nearing single digits, it was now or never for Reid.
If Republicans want to give the Neocon Party an endless blank check to fight whatever war they want and use U.S. troops to protect the President;s pride, they need to stand up in front of the world and say so. Reid’s move should ensure that in this case, that happens.
And a whole lot of pressure from bloggers didn’t hurt. But this needs to become SOP. Democrats cannot allow the GOP to threaten filibusters to act as obstructionists. Make them take the nuclear option, as they spent years calling it. On everything if need be. It’s stand up and be counted time. Make the GOP bring it all to a standstill while U.S. Troops are dying, because they are afraid to go on record.
See the video of Reid’s speech at Think Progress.