Stating that he wants a return to “regular order” in the Senate, Democratic West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin wrote in an op/ed in the Washington Post that he would not support anything that would weaken the filibuster.
“The filibuster is a critical tool to protecting that input and our democratic form of government,” Manchin stated. “That is why I have said it before and will say it again to remove any shred of doubt: There is no circumstance in which I will vote to eliminate or weaken the filibuster. The time has come to end these political games, and to usher a new era of bipartisanship where we find common ground on the major policy debates facing our nation.”
Without mentioning how Republicans have abused the filibuster and Senate rules to block any discussion on legislation passed by the House when Democrats held the majority in the House, Manchin said he strives for bipartisanship.
“Working legislation through regular order in the Senate prevents drastic swings in federal policymaking. Voting rights reforms, instituting health-care protections and changes to the federal tax code and business regulations take time to implement on the state and local levels,” Manchin wrote. “If the filibuster is eliminated or budget reconciliation becomes the norm, a new and dangerous precedent will be set to pass sweeping, partisan legislation that changes the direction of our nation every time there is a change in political control. The consequences will be profound — our nation may never see stable governing again.”
Citing the For the People Act, which would strengthen voting rights, Manchin said that is an example of legislation that should garner bipartisan support for ensuring the ability of citizens to vote. No republicans in the Senate have stated they would support the Act, and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has stated the bill will get no Republican support in an example of the new “regular order” in the Senate.