Senate Democrats have come up with a strategy that involves a series of delay tactics that will make life hell for McConnell and his majority.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has his caucus on board with an effort to disrupt and obstruct Senate Republicans, using a wide range of procedural tools to try to make it difficult for the Senate majority leader.
Interviews with more than a dozen Democratic senators revealed broad support for disrupting the Supreme Court confirmation process, even if the strategy yields some collateral damage. Yet Democrats facing tough reelections and those who typically spurn delay tactics overwhelmingly support the hardball campaign, potentially putting them at increased risk of losing their seats.
Politico is engaging in needless drama “Democrats in disarray” style drama. Outside of Doug Jones in Alabama and Gary Peters in Michigan, there are no incumbent Democrats who are in danger of losing their seats. Unfortunately, Jones might lose his seat no matter what, and Peters is leading in Michigan where a large Biden vote is expected to power him to another term.
The delay tactics are intended to stop Amy Coney Barrett from being seated to hear arguments on the Obamacare case. The White House has confirmed that her confirmation might not happen until two days before the presidential election.
Schumer can invoke the two-hour rule every day. The rule allows him to end all committee business after the Senate has been in session for two hours. If used daily during the Barrett confirmation hearings, it could add days and weeks to the process.
Democrats can also deny a quorum, refuse to give consent, and keep endangered Senate Republican incumbents in session by refusing to allow the Senate to recess.
The whole point of this rushed process is to seat Judge Barrett in time to hear the ACA case, and the calculus changes on getting her confirmed if Republicans lose the election, and try to confirm Barrett in the lame-duck session. A Mark Kelly win in Arizona would put a deadline of November 30 on any confirmation vote.
The Republican window to get Barrett confirmed is tight, and Democrats might be able to save the ACA, by delaying her confirmation vote until after the election.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association