Here is Exhibit A for blowing up the filibuster: Amy Coney Barrett is on the Supreme Court with a bare mininum in the Senate, but we can't get an independent commission to investigate an attack on our democracy on January 6th because of the ancient and very stupid filibuster.
You might think that any official sworn to uphold the United States Constitution would see this vote as a slam-dunk in light of the fact that armed extremists, fueled by incendiary words from the former "President" of the United States overran THEIR CHAMBER in an effort to change the outcome of the 2020 election.
You would be wrong. 9 Republicans were conveniently not present for the vote. 2 Democrats were also not present, one of whom had reasons and should have had the space to skip the vote without it being so close. The other one I will address separately later. 35 Republicans voted against an independent investigation of an effort to destroy our democracy and erode the fundamental underpinnings of our Constitution.
"Move on!" those 35 say. "It's no big deal, it was no insurrection at all!" They want to rewrite history and sweep it all under the rug because they know their own extremism, corruption and lust for power will be exposed to all the people.
2 Democrats and 9 Republicans skipped the vote altogether. They were: Marsha Blackburn, Roy Blunt, Mike Braun, retiring senator Richard Burr, James Inhofe, Patty Murray, Jim Risch, Mike Rounds, Richard Shelby, Kyrsten Sinema, and retiring senator Pat Toomey.
Patty Murray issued a statement saying she had a personal family matter that required her to fly home this morning. The vote was supposed to have been held yesterday, but Republicans stalled on another piece of legislation in order to drive the vote to the dead of night or this morning.
My statement on today's vote on the January 6th commission. pic.twitter.com/KPXfXeiMkI
— Senator Patty Murray (@PattyMurray) May 28, 2021
As for Kyrsten Sinema, there has been no statement, no explanation whatsoever of why she would choose not to go on the record with her support for a commission intended to shore up our democracy and hold the extremists and those who inspired them accountable. I hope Arizona has a great candidate on tap and primaries the hell out of her.
There will be an investigation. It will be a commission appointed by Democrats alone, and Republicans will whine and mewl that it's purely political, intended to do harm to their chances in the midterms. Let me just go on the record here and now with this: I don't give a damn what they say.
Republicans are extremists -- every last one of them, and it's time they owned what they do. No more hiding behind missed votes or "personal favors" to Mitch McConnell. They just voted to allow an attempted insurrection to stand. They voted to kick every Capitol police officer in the teeth.
Kill the filibuster and pass the things that will save our democracy and possibly our country. Kick these extremists to the curb. And for the love of all that's holy, let's elect some more Democrats to the Senate.
Here is Joe Manchin, who is very distressed by the obvious:
A distressed Manchin, as the commission appears headed for defeat in the Senate:
"I'm very disappointed, very frustrated that politics has trumped - literally and figuratively - the good of the country." https://t.co/APn2FluQW1
— Lindsay Wise (@lindsaywise) May 28, 2021
More from Manchin. If he believes all this malarkey, he should immediately support ditching the filibuster:
Manchin is angry at McConnell: ‘It’s just pure raw politics...It really, really is disheartening. I never thought I’d see it up close and personal that politics could trump our country.’ https://t.co/JeEJCTbYXh
— Trip Gabriel (@tripgabriel) May 28, 2021
Here's Mike Braun, specifically saying he doesn't support a partisan commission and yet he COULDN'T BE BOTHERED TO STICK AROUND FOR A VOTE ON THE BIPARTISAN ONE!!
My statement on proposed January 6 commission: pic.twitter.com/GAElxlDTND
— Senator Mike Braun (@SenatorBraun) May 28, 2021
Here's some reality:
A system that allows a 54-35 vote margin to be called a "stinging defeat" for the side that got the 54 is just not sustainable. This is over one way or another-it either slides into authoritarian minority rule or the filibuster goes away and allows an actual democracy to function pic.twitter.com/PNi2uF2z2q
— Ryan Grim (@ryangrim) May 28, 2021