Former Democrat presidents are jumping in to request Senator Joe Manchin to end the filibuster which is stopping Biden’s agenda in the US Senate.
Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, and TV host Oprah Winfrey personally called Manchin to pass the Senate reform agenda.
Former presidents urged Manchin to kill the filibuster
Manchin told his colleagues he received phone calls from his old friends in recent days.
Apart from Obama, Clinton, and Oprah, he has been contacted by the former staffers of his own campaign, as well as those belonging to Sen. Robert Byrd’s campaigns.
Obama portrayed the filibuster as a racist tool, which according to him, is used to hinder legislation in the civil rights area. Thus, he called this legislative option “another Jim Crow relic.”
Dems go all-out to sway Manchin. He’s received calls from Oprah (!), former presidents Clinton and Obama plus former Byrd and Manchin staffers. But most important meetings probably with Tester, Kaine and King — there’s been at least a dozen https://t.co/3Emrqzw1LP
— Burgess Everett (@burgessev) January 7, 2022
Over a period of time, Manchin has rejected ending the filibuster, noting it is necessary to protect minority rights in the Senate.
The filibuster is a legislative process, according to which most legislation can only pass in the Senate with 60 or more votes. Democrats have often blamed Republicans for using this so-called roadblock to suppress Biden’s agenda.
For instance, many bills, including the Democrats’ voting rights bill and the police defunding bill, are stalled in Congress, due to the presence of the filibuster, for which Democrats are trying to abolish this measure.
Longtime filibuster defenders ate their own words
This time, the same people who supported Manchin’s demand of not abolishing the filibuster are turning against him.
For example, Democrat Senators Jon Tester, Tim Kaine, and Angus King were all hesitant to introduce filibuster reforms. However, now they are leading the campaign of getting Manchin on board.
STANDING STRONG: Despite fielding an intense pressure campaign, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) has yet to budge on his opposition to altering the Senate filibuster for the sake of passing the Democrats’ voting reform legislation#NextRevFNC @SteveHiltonx https://t.co/8XU35Y2kOs
— The Next Revolution (@NextRevFNC) January 8, 2022
Reportedly, all of these senators have met with Manchin at least a dozen times combined to talk about Senate reforms, along with other Democrats trying to sway Manchin.
Kaine compared the filibuster talks with his recent 27 hours long drive where he was stuck in a traffic jam, due to a snowstorm, noting the talks are going as slowly as his drive did.
Angus King asserted although there is no guarantee to reach a solution, lawmakers will continue to talk about the reforms.
While the likes of Tester, Kaine, and King signed a letter in 2017 pledging to “preserve existing rules” in the Senate, however, they indicated the January 6 Capitol Hill insurrection forced them to change their minds.
The intensifying efforts of Democrats to lure Manchin is due to the fact that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is seeking a vote on Senate rule changes on January 17; the effort will bite the dust without Manchin voting in its favor.
In parallel, Democrats are also trying to persuade Senator Krysten Sinema to vote in favor of a rule change. Although she is crystal clear she will not reform the filibuster, it is a common perception she will follow suit once Manchin agrees to do so.