An Ideal Rule for the Age of Rage? Critics May Be Making the Best Argument For Keeping The Filibuster

Below is my column in the Hill on the future of the filibuster and why this may be the most credible period for the use of such a compromise-forcing rule. There have always been good-faith arguments against the use of such a rule as inhibiting democratic voting. After all, the rule blocks bare majority voting. However, with a razor-thin margin in both houses, the use of such a rule can help force greater dialogue and compromise in Congress, which most voters indicate that they want in polls. It now appears that Sen. Joe Manchin (D., W.V.) will block the federal voting rights legislation even without a filibuster. As a result he was attacked as a “not very bright” aider and abetter and “cowardly, power-hungry white guy” by the left. Sen. Dick Durbin’s press secretary on the Judiciary Committee even curiously declared that democracy should not be “in the hands of a man who lives in a house boat.” The furious response explains why Manchin has been one of just two Democrats willing to demand compromise. The Republicans have roughly the same number willing to push from that side. However, combined these senators are seeking bipartisan agendas in a deeply divided nation. Killing the filibuster will remove the key pressure to seek bipartisan approaches.

Here is the column:

“If you want a friend in Washington, buy a dog,” is a quote often attributed, perhaps erroneously, to President Truman. When it comes to Sen. Joe ManchinPresident Biden may be thinking of offering his voracious dog, Major, to the West Virginia Democrat.

(Official White House Photo/Adam Schultz)

Biden has trolled Manchin and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) in public speeches, denouncing both as those “two members of the Senate who vote more with my Republican friends.” In reality, Manchin and Sinema have voted 100 percent with Biden so far, more than such liberal icons as Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) or Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). That’s why the Washington Post gave Biden three more “Pinocchios” to add to his growing collection.

However, both Manchin and Sinema support preserving the Senate’s filibuster rule, and they are portrayed in the press as fighting for what is being called a “Jim Crow relic.” One reporter asked Sinema how she would respond to what critics are calling a “choice between the filibuster and democracy,” while the Los Angeles Times ran a column titled, “What’s the matter with Kyrsten Sinema?

In truth, the filibuster is no more racist than any other procedural rule. The irony is that, despite its abusive use in the past, this is arguably the most compelling time for a filibuster rule.

While Democrats and the media have painted anyone supporting the filibuster as anti-democratic, even racist, they overwhelmingly supported the rule when Democrats were in the Senate minority. As a senator, Biden denounced any termination of the filibuster as “disastrous” and declared: “God save us from that fate … [since it] would change this fundamental understanding and unbroken practice of what the Senate is all about.”

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) previously warned the Senate that it was “on the precipice” of a constitutional crisis as “the checks and balances which have been at the core of this republic are about to be evaporated” by a proposed elimination of the filibuster. Likewise, then-Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) denounced those seeking to eradicate the filibuster as trying to change “the rules in the middle of the game so that they can make all the decisions while the other party is told to sit down and keep quiet.” He added: “If the majority chooses to end the filibuster and if they choose to change the rules and put an end to democratic debate, then the fighting and the bitterness and the gridlock will only become worse.”

Back then, the filibuster was the embodiment of “democratic debate” — and those words were echoed in the same newspapers and on the same television programs that now denounce the rule. When Sinema recently made the same defense of the rule as Biden, Schumer and Obama, she was attacked as mouthing specious, racist or reactionary talking points.

It does not matter that Democrats have used this now racist and undemocratic rule hundreds of times, including filibustering bills 327 times just last year.

In reality, the rule did not originate as a racist device. Indeed, as I have previously written, it is more a “relic” of the Julius Caesar era than the Jim Crow era. In ancient Rome, the filibuster was used to force the Roman senate to hear dissenting voices; Cato the Younger used it to oppose Julius Caesar’s return to Rome and to denounce rampant corruption. It was viewed as protecting minority viewpoints in senate proceedings. In the United States, it can be traced to a procedural argument by former Vice President Aaron Burr to get rid of an automatic end to debate on bills in the early 1800s. It was not created in or for the Jim Crow era — and Cato the Younger was not the junior senator from Alabama.

The rule has been used for different purposes, including, most infamously, to oppose 1950s civil rights legislation. Over the years, it has been modified, as in 1975 when the threshold to end a filibuster was reduced to 60 votes. However, both parties agreed that the rule was needed to force greater consensus in the Senate, which fashions itself “The world’s greatest deliberative body.”

There are good-faith arguments that filibusters frustrate democratic voting. However, this is arguably a time when the value of the rule is most evident and most compelling as a compromise-forcing legislative device. The Senate is split 50-50, a reflection of the country’s division. (The House is little better off, with a majority of just a handful of votes, the smallest majority since World War II.) That leaves Democrats struggling to pass bills based on the tie-breaking vote of Vice President Harris.

Democrats were able to circumvent the filibuster rule to pass a $1.9 trillion relief bill, with no need to compromise, by using a budget reconciliation tactic. Heavily laden with pork projects and few spending limits, that bill embodied the dangers of enacting legislation on simple “muscle votes.” Now, though, they want to push through non-budget bills that cannot be shoehorned into a budget reconciliation framework.

For example, many senators want to add as many as four new Supreme Court justices to give liberals an instant, controlling majority on the court. There also is a demand to make D.C. the 51st state. Notably, both moves are highly unpopular with a majority of voters. And Democrats are pushing an unprecedented federalization of elections to prevent states from requiring forms of voter identification that are popular with voters.

Pushing through such controversial measures with bare majorities and on straight party lines will only deepen the divisions and increase the rage in this country. So this is precisely a time when the filibuster can play a positive role, by forcing legislation to pass with a modest level of bipartisan support. It requires consensus and compromise at a time of growing, violent division.

Democrats, media figures and activists are aware of the hypocrisy over the filibuster rule and its long defense by Democrats as a positive democratic device. That is why there is a concerted effort to portray support for the filibuster as racist. It is a familiar pattern in silencing an opposing view: Frame the rule as racist, and dismiss the consensus arguments accepted just a few years ago in defense of the rule. You then pass bills on straight party line votes in the name of national unity.

The filibuster has gone through historic controversies through the centuries, from opposing Caesar to opposing civil rights. But as a consensus-forcing rule, its time may have arrived, to the chagrin of many.

Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro Professor of Public Interest Law at George Washington University. You can find his updates on Twitter @JonathanTurley.

 

112 thoughts on “An Ideal Rule for the Age of Rage? Critics May Be Making the Best Argument For Keeping The Filibuster”

  1. For those that want to smile or grimace;
    —-
    David Bossie: Guatemalan president’s ‘disrespect’ for VP Harris’s ‘pandering’ was ‘palpable’
    President Alejandro Giammattei “lectured her about ‘your policy created this problem’ on one hand, and then on the other hand, he makes her put on a mask,” said Trump political adviser.

    The Guatemalan president’s treatment of visiting Vice President Kamala Harris illustrates world leaders’ lack of respect for the Biden administration, according to David Bossie, president of Citizens United.

    Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei “lectured” Harris on the Biden administration’s border policy and told her to get her mask from the podium and put it back on, Bossie remarked on the “John Solomon Reports” podcast.

    “For him to have lectured her about ‘your policy created this problem’ on the one hand, and then on the other hand he makes her put on a mask — did you see that? — he makes her stop,” said Bossie, Donald Trump’s deputy campaign manager in 2016. “And as they’re walking away from their bilateral press conference, which is normal, he makes her put on a mask. He sent her back to her podium to get her mask and put it on.”

  2. Olde Edo says:

    “You occasionally seem to be boasting about your expensive lifestyle, and I’m sure it is very nice and congratulations for that.”

    I think you must be confusing me with Ben Marcus! Though I will confess that I do reside in Marin County and like to travel. I’ve been to Red Square at the risk of now being called a Red!

    Be that as it may, I believe in free speech every bit as much as Turley. We differ only in the consequences one should suffer for exercising that freedom. Turley believes that no matter the content of the speech, the exclusive cure for hateful speech is more and better speech. I do not share his optimism that good speech can rectify hate speech. Haters are not interested in listening to opposing views in order to have their views changed. Their minds are closed. They don’t want to engage in a good faith debate because they know their views are indefensible. What is the point in arguing with someone who believes, say, that blacks are biologically inferior to whites and deserve to be treated so. Is it really necessary to argue that point in this day and age? Can we not just dismiss such a view without trying to convince the speaker otherwise?

    As a self-described “free speech originalist,” Turley seemingly does not believe that any person should lose his employment as a consequence of his hate speech or lose his platform to promote it. On the contrary, I believe such people should be denounced, shunned, and ostracized, and subject to lose their job or platform to reiterate such views if sufficiently egregious.

    Naturally, people will differ as to where the line should be drawn. We can debate that point. But the fact that the line is somewhat arbitrary in practice is no reason not to draw it somewhere. Turley would have you believe that no line can be drawn because it is impossible to draw a bright line in order to provide adequate prior notice where the line is. Obscenity is not protected by the First Amendment, and that is not a bright line.

    Turley constantly complains about our living in an “age of rage” to use his words. Yet his conception of free speech has not yielded an antidote to this rage. Until society- not government- makes those who traffic in hate pay a social cost and possibly a financial cost for their hate, Turley’s “age of rage” will never subside.

    1. “Until society- not government- makes those who traffic in hate pay a social cost and possibly a financial cost for their hate, Turley’s “age of rage” will never subside.”
      ********************************
      I have no idea why hate gets a bad rap. it’s a bonafide human emotion. It serves a useful purpose by clearly indicating prohibited behavior. Its perfectly fine to hate child abuse, human trafficking, murder, rape, torture and the like. And as Fulton Sheen used to say, “Hate the sin not the sinner.” Hate is a marker of devotion to principle which sadly the Left has forgotten about. Truth is if you don’t hate you don’t have strongly held principles. And if you don’t have strongly held principles (save your own self-interest which is universally subscribed), you’re a pretty tawdry person or more accurately a American Leftie.

      1. Mespo: “Hate the sin not the sinner.”

        I’m talking about hating people not their conduct.

    2. |” On the contrary, I believe such people should be denounced, shunned, and ostracized, and subject to lose their job or platform to reiterate such views if sufficiently egregious.”|

      Your opinion puts you in the company of some very prominent, even famous, historical characters, beginning with Nero and continuing through Adolph Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Mao Tse-Tung, and most recently Kim Il Sung. Sadly for you, you live in a nation (so far) of citizens, not of subjects and serfs that populated the countries ruled by the worthies named above, but that shouldn’t prevent you from personally attempting to cancel all those with whom you disagree. I suspect that rather attempting personally to do this, you will seek to enlist expendable useful idiots to bear the burden and take the risks.

    1. Sorry I missed that original airing, and thanks for posting, Olly.

      Awesome ad, and my relatives absolutely were fighting against fascism in WWII, one who died on submarine in the Pacific after that Sub was the only one in the fleet doing time in both the Atlantic and Pacific, shallow water routes in both places. The other as a tank driver at Ardennes who was forever marked by that war as he ventured into what was a spectacular life afterward. I remember talking with him often about his experiences, and his pride at playing the role he could in preventing fascism from sweeping the globe at that point in history. I’m sorry you don’t recognize the value of my uncles’ contributions and that you disagree with fascism not being something to avoid at all costs…, but they also fought for your right of free speech so they’d be the first to grant you that despite energetically disagreeing with what you’re saying here.

      eb

      1. I’m sorry you don’t recognize the value of my uncles’ contributions and that you disagree with fascism not being something to avoid at all costs

        What a shame you choose to disgrace the honorable service of your relatives and everyone else that has served and sacrificed their lives for your right to express your ignorant hatred of America. The reason that Lincoln Project propaganda is disgusting is because they used the first 1:40 to extol the virtues of those that sacrificed all against fascism, only to falsely equate that effort to the Marxist Antifa domestic terrorist plague of today.

        1. That’s your opinion, Olly. One shaped by the media you consume, certainly. My relatives would also stand up for you to have that opinion. But on the issue of anti-facism, they’d be fully in disagreement with you.

          eb

        2. Yes, fascism is a ruling ideology of the left-wing (i.e. totalitarian) of the governing spectrum. So, stand up to the fascists and the nominally “anti-fascists”, too, who march in service to diversity, equity, and inclusion of public and corporate interests.

          1. Probably the central point of the anti fascist movement then and now boils down to racism and how it’s expressed.

            In WWII clearly the Allies took a stand against the Nazis for their expansionism (as well as against the Japanese), but the anti fascist portion was in reaction to Hitler’s attempt to eradicate European Jews. Today the individualized anti fascist movements will react as an almost amoeba like entity that springs up where there is perceived white supremicism on the rise. Indeed, Antifa is not really an organized group (despite having a small organizing core, something like 5-15 members per city), but is really a collection of smaller groups that will move together in response to increased presence of the ‘Boys’ networks primarilly (Proud Boys, Boogaloo Bois, other Nazi sympathizing groups, etc). They don’t really have counterparts within the more nationalized structure as several white suppremicist and Nazi sympathsizing groups do.

            Unlike, say, the Resistance movements in Europe who would take out targets strategically important to the Nazis in support of the Allied movement, Antifa will likely organize around things like ‘a chance to go punch a Nazi in the face’. It’s not a really culturally refined movement. But they will engage in what they determine to be guerrilla actions in the presence of white suppremacy movements who they deem to be the main expression of fascism currently. So they’ll break some glass, set a few fires, get in some fights — but have always steered clear of bigger, strategic targets. Apparently, a few years back there was an Antifa off shoot that was discussing taking out a bridge in the Cleveland area and that offshoot received huge pushback from what serves as the organized core for the organization which recognized the stupidity of the plan. So the plan never came off.

            And, most importantly, Antifa wouldn’t sign off on something like invading the Capitol. A movement like that runs totally against the organizing principles of whatever organization they have and they’d recognize the blow back would eradicate their movement as well as work against their message — that being that white suppremacy is the true expression of fascism today. Do things get out of hand at times? Sure. I believe there was a shooting in California last summer that arose from clashing with white suppremist groups. But we’re talking this is the sort of conflict that arises in a jail setting. Turf wars. The AB vs. the Bloods and the Crips. That sort of thing. It’s like a war…, once it’s declared any social niceities are dismissed and you can find yourself with characters on both sides that will do questionable, indeed immoral, things. Let’s not kid ourselves that in WWII there weren’t resistance groups to the Germans who wouldn’t kill one and then skull f&*k a Nazi because insanity just breeds further insanity for the most part.

            Main point is that with the rise of Trumpism came a rise in countermovements. And when trump clearly began to favor white suppremacy, the Anti fascist movement began to grow.

            eb

              1. It might work in ways they don’t want. If they want to reawaken race consciousness in whites there is no better way to do it than keep attacking them.

                    1. Checking in for the viewpoints of those truly missing the boat is why I admire this blog.

                      eb

              2. Hint for Mespo: you can find white supremacy sentiment at Klan rallies and other of the finer rallies where things like “white power!” and “Sig Heil!” are chanted.

                eb

        3. If the truth be told the Marxist/Leninist/Stalinist anti-fascists killed more German soldiers than their Western counterparts, accounting for 76 percent of Germany’s military dead. And the Russian war dead both military and civilian was approximately 200 times that suffered by Americans in Europe. Just saying.

          1. The “Marxist/Leninist/Stalinist anti-fascists” as you call them also were allied with Hitler at the beginning of the war, invading Poland from the east while Hitler advanced from the west. The 20,000 or so Polish intellectuals murdered in the Katyn Forest were murdered by the Soviets. Prior to the war the Soviet Union secretly helped Germany rearm with raw materials and allowed pilots to train at bases in the Soviet Union during the time Germany was barred from having an air force. It is quite possible that there would not have been a war without Soviet aid to Germany. Both were murderous, criminal regimes. Just saying.

            1. What I said and what you said are both true. Though if you watch RTAmerica, it promotes a documentary which justifies the Soviet invasion into Poland as a defensive measure against Hitler’s invasion! Russia is attempting historical revisionism.

    2. “This is absolutely disgusting.”

      Ranks right down there with the vicious lie that the 9/11 terrorists were “freedom fighters.”

  3. Shush. Don’t tell the Democrats that 65% of the people don’t agree with packing the Supreme Court. If we are quiet they will continue this push right into 2020 and the Republicans will make them own it. Then they will try to tell us that they really never thought that it was a good idea. Shush. Don’t tell them that 4 out of 5 voters support voter ID. Shush. Don’t talk to loud. They think that their the only ones in heaven.

    1. 80% also favor ealy voting, and 63% favor automatic voter registration as well. This was in 2016. So I’m taking it that you also support those opinions as well?

      eb

      1. If 80% favor early voting it must then follow that many Republicans favor early voting. I have no problem with auto registration as long as an ID is made available when people arrive to vote. The Democratic Party is in favor of voting with no ID required and they are also in favor of packing the court and eliminating the filibuster. The polling tells us that many of the Democratic voters do not agree with the position of their leadership. Once again I say shush. Don’t let them know that they’re whistling past the burial plots in the background.

        1. Voting rights should happen automatically at birth with the issuance of a SS#, timing in at the 18th birthday. Nothing but the commiting of extreme felony should take that right away. Voting rights should indeed be granted to legal immigrants. Pretty simple. The public would absolutely go for that sort of ID law because it would be the easiest and most direct way to manage voting. No one believes the photo ID or signature testing methods are anything but an attempt to limit voting participation. Advocates of those systems agree with limiting the vote. Full stop.

          eb

    2. Demos-cracy is aborted in darkness without affirmative registration, authetnicated voting, and an auditable trail.

  4. If you can pack the Supreme Court you will have complete control of the laws of the land. If you can end the filibuster you can have complete control of the laws that are written. You must understand that our new way has been given to us by our god and the sacraments must be carried out for the good of the little children. Anything that blocks our path must be eliminated. The very fate of mankind hangs in the balance so if necessary we must rewrite the rules. Because of our divine calling we must prevail by any means necessary. History is of no consideration. If the enemy says now we must say never. If the enemy says never we must say now. Take this manifesto seriously comrade if you wish to see the great fruition of our movement. RAISE YOUR FIST IN UNANIMITY!!!.

      1. Anonymous, when Biden appoints two new Supreme Court Justices will you then say that McConnell has completed his attempt at control. Trump and the Republicans could have cemented their control by expanding the court and ending the filibuster when they were in control. They never came close to doing the things that Democrats are now proposing when they had the chance. The Republicans never even floated the ideas. They had it in their hands and they let it slip away. Maybe they are not possessed by the “any means necessary” modus operandi by the directors of the left.

        1. Repub strategy only includes a few things these days. The naming of judges and running them through the Senate like there were turnstiles at the doors, and lowering taxes on the richest of the rich…neither are subject to the filibuster anymore. Repubs have things set up just how they’d like it.

          The voting suppression they need to insure their disproportional power relative to demographics they are working on at the state level.

          eb

            1. I know. I was completely okay with the last one although it would’ve been nicer to have a greater advantage in the House as well as to have a cushion to work around Manchin in the Senate.

              eb

  5. Look, I don’t like the filibuster. It’s undemocratic and frustrates the popular will. That’s my view in a perfect world but in times like this when the Dims want to divide us along racial lines, defund the police, let violent criminals out of jail and throw open our borders, any check on their ruthless application of power is welcome. It will remain welcome until politicians start listening to their constituents instead of their bribers. Yeah, right, like forever.

    1. Look, I don’t like the filibuster. It’s undemocratic and frustrates the popular will.

      The United States founding documents rest on on several core tenants. Protecting against the tyranny of the majority is one of those tenants.

      Today the filibuster is exactly the circumstances where it is needed most.
      House the closest to even split in a long time. The Senate is 50/50. We are a little over 1.5 years to elections. The people almost always vote for divided government. A split between the executive and congress. Without the filibuster, legislation becomes as meaningless as executive orders. Immediately cancelled with an election.

    2. Our constitutional republic was designed to mitigate democratic(i.e. mob)/dictatorial (i.e. single/central/monopolistic) progression. The filibuster may be a viable tool to realize that ambition through temporal and rhetorical allowance.

  6. Per Sen Durbin Press Sec: As a result he was attacked as a “not very bright” aider and abetter and “cowardly, power-hungry white guy” by the left. Sen. Dick Durbin’s press secretary on the Judiciary Committee even curiously declared that democracy should not be “in the hands of a man who lives in a house boat.” – Interesting – FDR lived on his yacht for years after his marital affair and contracting polio.

    Perhaps the time spent on his boat was an indication of a “cowardly, power-hungry white guy” whose New Deal experienced avg unemployment of over 12.5 pct from 1933-1940 with a huge spike to 22.5% from 1937-38 many years into the program His treasury secretary Henry Morganthal said to democrats in a meeting in 1939 that: “We have tried spending money. We are spending more money than we have ever spent before and it does not work. And I have just none interest, and if I am wrong . . . somebody else can have my job. I want to see this country prosperous. I want to see people get a job, I want to see people get enough to eat. We have never made good on our promises. . . . I say after eight years of this administration we have just as much unemployment as when we started . . . . And an enormous debt to boot!”

    The Biden admin will suffer the same fate. I wonder if there is a correlation between living on a house boat and campaigning from a basement? Hmmm. Have to have Dr. Fauci sponsor research into that since he won’t be able to pay for any more ‘Gain of Function’ research.

  7. OT, though of course related, because everything is related to Donald Trump

    The Lethal Wages of Trump Derangement Madness
    https://amgreatness.com/2021/06/06/the-lethal-wages-of-trump-derangement-madness/

    Hydroxychloroquine + Azithromycin therapy at a higher dose improved survival by nearly 200% in ventilated COVID patients (Jun 2 2021)

    https://www.news-medical.net/news/20210602/HydroxychloroquineAzithromycin-therapy-at-a-higher-dose-improved-survival-by-nearly-20025-in-ventilated-COVID-patients.aspx

  8. 51% voting 49% into slavery is a racist vote. While not getting rid of majority tyranny over the minority, the filibuster helps to reduce that possibility. The Constitution protects us from enslaving others, but the left is anxious to get rid of the Constitution.

  9. The name “philibuster” came about when Congress was moving from Philadelphia to DC.
    Philly got busted. No one gives a damn. Next stop is Vietnam. Cause it’s five, six, seven, open up the Pearly Gates. Ain’t no time to wonder why…Trump is going to lie.

    1. Simple majority democracy is two wolves and a sheep deciding what’s for dinner.

  10. Always love when a topic gets the hairs on your neck up, JT. This one even has you talking smack about the Pinnochios Biden has gotten while you almost completely ignored delving into that with the failed blog writer from florida., L’Orange.

    Truth is, the Senate hasn’t been the world’s most deliberative body for awhile and, as Chris Hayes often points out, it’s a great time for Repubs and the filibuster. They don’t need to worry about it anymore to stack the SCOTUS & the judiciary, nor for running tax breaks for the super high end through, whereas Dems are subject to it for the vast majority of their agenda. Mitch McConnell has home jobbed the rules and he did it long ago.

    So the Senate is stuck exactly where it’s stuck and it will stay that way. Probably best to find ways around it and let it become a body that specializes in yakiing about talking points all day before heading out to fund raise to continue on being able to spew talking points. Hopes and prayers everyone!!!

    P.S. Joe Manchin is either willfully deluded or has a hell of a back room arrangement with Moscow Mitch.

    eb

    1. EB,

      Notice that Turley points out the criticism of Manchin by his fellow Democrats, BUT he is silent about the abuse heaped upon Liz Cheney by her colleagues when she was cancelled.

      Turley I suspect is trying to ingratiate himself to the Trumpists before he becomes persona non grata when he has to defend Trump’s “non-snappy” and witness-laden criminal prosecution. All his pandering to no avail….

      1. When Turley inevitably loses his Fox gig, I doubt he will be welcomed back to the mainstream media. I gather his snubbing by the mainstream is what drove him to Fox. Fox used to be the end of the line for most. After Fox, it’s usually a downward spiral to Newsmax though- I have to say- I don’t have such a low opinion of Turley to believe that he would be prepared to stoop that low.

        1. Agreed, Jeff. We’ve seen him go from MSNBC spots on Morning Joe to bits on CBS…, now to Fox. Newsmax is probably too far I’m thinking he’s building into retirement after a Trump indictment. Rounding into the homestretch right now.

          eb

          1. Various hysterics at MSNBC screamed for four years about Russiagate…and you consider it the top of the heap? Your poor judgment cancels whatever credibility you thought you had.

            1. You’re right, my bad. That Fox gig no doubt fills him with pride at the end of the day. What could be better than being on the air with Hannity and Tucker when they bust wisdom nuggets out their b holes?

              eb

              1. To me, the under reported story of last week was McGahn’s testimony, which apparently dipped into the obstruction touched on in Volume 2 of the report. I find it almost impossible not to hold Turley accountable for his constant lying about the report ‘debunking’ Russian collusion/interference. Maybe his acquaintance with Barr and his related PR campaign made him susceptible, but Turley has, many times, given Trump a complete pass on the report in his writings.

                Probably not a good idea to sleep on McGahn,’s testimony re: future obstruction charges. If the testimony is as clear as the administration feared it would be when it kept McGahn from it 2 years ago it almost dictates charges just in order to set precedent. If nothing is done, it sets the table for whoever is president to obstruct in whatever way they’d see fit when they get caught in a jam. Interesting times afoot. Not that Trump shouldn’t be focused on what’s coming his way in NY state, but the real sleeper here might be what transpired last week.

                eb

        2. You do realize this article was written for the Hill?
          Professor Turley also writes for USAToday.
          Neither of which is in the same side or league of Fox.

          What is your obsession with JT and Fox?

          1. Also, maybe it is Professor Turley who is the one who decided to break with MSNBC and CBS.

            1. Ball-Less S. Meyer can’t control himself. He blurts out his hate every chance he gets.

          2. UpstateFarmer,

            I’m no less obsessed in shaming Turley for his hypocrisy than he is obsessed in shaming Leftists for theirs.
            Turley repeatedly warns his readers that this county is descending into an “age of rage.” And yet he works for a news outlet that traffics in hate.

            I challenge Turley to watch Hannity, Carlson, Ingraham or Levin and look me straight in the eye and tell me that these talk show hosts are not instilling hatred for Democrats.
            Mark Levin is pushing his new book “American Marxism” in which he claims that Democrats are Marxists. Soon he’ll be promoting it on all the Fox shows. As this book further adds to the rage in this country, will Turley mention it? Not censor it. Not cancel it. But is it too much to ask that he denounce one of his Fox colleagues?

            Turley reveals his conflict of interest with Fox parenthetically in articles only when he has to, but he does not identify himself as a “Fox legal analyst.” Instead, he holds himself out as an objective commentator and rightly criticizes MSNBC and CNN at times, but I defy you to present me a single example of his taking issue with anything said or done at Fox.

            I will continue to shame Turley for selling out to Fox until he departs from that network or gains the intestinal fortitude to criticize its rage-filled hosts who profit from increasing the cultural and political polarization in this country, a trend which Turley points out is damaging this country.

            I hope that answers your question.

            1. “I challenge Turley to watch Hannity, Carlson, Ingraham or Levin and look me straight in the eye and tell me that …”

              Ball-Less, Professor Turley doesn’t write for TV Guide.

                1. Anonymous the stupid, let us get it straight, you deserve to be insulted. You are not an honest person.

                    1. Allan S. Meyer** clearly likes to hear himself talk. He imagines that others are interested in his drivel.

                      **Allanonymous @ 8:14 PM

                    2. “He imagines that others are interested in his drivel.”

                      Anonymous the Stupid, how can that be? I tell everyone to throw out anonymous comments, and mine included while you cry, that anonymous names and icons should continue to exist. You are the one that wants to express yourself, not me. When I want to say something, I generally use my name and my icon.

                2. In the morning, S. Meyer dresses up like his hero — Donald Trump — and then spends the better part trying to emulate him.

                  1. In other words, Anonymous the Stupid, you tell us that I wear a suit and tie almost every day. That is an excellent way to dress, but as usual, you are talking without knowledge.

                    1. In other words, Anonymous the Stupid, to communicate, you need to link somewhere. I suppose you are trying to say you have no imagination. Do you know why you have no imagination? Because you are Anonymous the Stupid.

                    2. Also lost on Allan is this:

                      “A picture’s worth a thousand words.”

                3. It’s amusing that I so get under his skin, but it’s better to be despised than ignored.

                    1. Anonymous the Stupid, it is nice that you are settling down and adopting a new master to follow around.

                    2. S.Meyer/Allan confirms what some of us have known for a long time:

                      Anonymous is S. Meyer’s ‘master.’

                  1. To Jeff Silberman, June 7, 2021 at 10:36 PM:
                    Don’t worry, Jeff, you are being actively ignored by the majority of readers, I’m sure.

                    Off-topic comment to Jeff: You occasionally seem to be boasting about your expensive lifestyle, and I’m sure it is very nice and congratulations for that.
                    There is one thing that a brilliant scholar from U. Chicago once told me that I’d like to pass along. He said that in his travels and extensive residences abroad, he’d discovered one interesting tendency that affects people’s world-views. Namely, even though traveling abroad or extensively within one’s own country with the expectation that “travel broadens one’s perspective”, there is a strong tendency to largely or exclusively interact anything more than superficially with people of one’s own socioeconomic class. Therefore, one tends to hear opinions that echo one’s own, even when the other person is of a different nationality or race. This can give the illusion of finding widespread consensus with one’s own viewpoint.

                    For example, the election of Trump as president left the majority of the “pundits” and the Democrat leadership shocked and confused. The reason for this may be that these political experts generally only interact within their own socioeconomic-political cohort, and had no idea what the less economically blessed masses with little access to media megaphones were experiencing and thinking.

                    Prof. Turley’s sharp focus on the importance of freedom of speech and the press helps serve as an antidote to the above limitation.

                  2. I don’t despise you. I listen to what you have to say and laugh. Your rhetoric is hateful, envious, and dishonest. The content lacks intelligent thought even though you make sure we know you are a lawyer.

                    I am glad I amuse you because that relieves me of having to worry about hurting your feelings. It permits me to make sure I amuse you more, and you can thank me later.

    2. Enter Anonymous to help make the point regarding the hypocrisy of the left. Seven months ago-filibuster =good, today, filibuster=racist.

      This is another example of the Harry Reid syndrome of needing to be careful of what you wish for. Anyone that has followed the asinine politics of the country and the Democrats for the last few years will know what I mean.

    3. You haven’t considered what Manchin could have done to really screw the strident, “1-party” Dems: He could have voted to end the filibuster, then while the ink was drying from Biden’s signature, declare himself an Independent, shifting the Senate majority to the Repubs. Wow. McConnell in charge again, but without the constraints of the filibuster and possible 51-49 votes….the VP irrelevant.

      Considering how easy that would have been for Manchin, I’d say he’s steering a very cautious, moderate course.

      1. That would’ve been devious, indeed, probably just forestalling what McConnell will do if he gets control of the Senate in ’22. There is not a person in Washington (other than perhaps Manchin) who doesn’t know this will be the first thing he does.

        eb

  11. Only the Democrats’ and the media would support the filibuster while in the minority and then call it racist THE NEXT YEAR when in the majority.
    In politics shamelessness is a superpower.

    1. “In politics shamelessness is a superpower.”

      Republicans are at least as shameless as Democrats.

      1. What you say is BS. The Democrats of today have no regard for the rule of law. They are racists and are promoting racism with CRT. Their leaders are selling America to China and Russia.

        1. Why don’t you lay out the tenets of CRT right here for the purposes of discussion, Allan?

          eb

          1. Bug, it is no longer my job to educate you. The tenets of CRT are easy to find. If you think CRT is a positive step, then tell us why. Unfortunately, you say nothing in all your posts. That makes you a giant waste of time.

            I will make things easy and summarize the entire debate for you, who belongs in the category of brain dead.

            “I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

            SM

              1. CRT and “I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” — Martin Luther King, Jr. are diametrically opposed.

                Choose one, and you exclude the other. Judging people by the color of their skin is racist. That makes your apparent choice racist.

                SM

        2. For that matter discuss exactly how the Dems are “selling America to China and Russia”. Be sure to include why trump’s actions in the grain markets didn’t divert delivery contracts to China directly to the Russians.

          1. “For that matter discuss exactly how the Dems are “selling America to China and Russia”. Be sure to include why trump’s actions in the grain markets didn’t divert delivery contracts to China directly to the Russians.”

            What the Bug just said above sounds like he is trying to emulate Anonymous the Stupid. He succeeded.

              1. What was the evasion?

                I thought the following was very direct, “What the Bug just said above sounds like he is trying to emulate Anonymous the Stupid. He succeeded.”

                SM

                1. Being an old basketball player, it pleases me to no end to be able a classic playground phrase in response because it’s so fitting: if you don’t know you better axe somebody.

                  eb

                  1. Bug, you like to tell others when they miss a comma, but you ought to do better work on your sentence structure.

                    No one is axing you. You have little understanding of world politics though you talk very loud, and you seem not to understand what MLK was saying. It appears you think color comes before character.

                    SM

                    1. “And the evasion multiplies.”

                      You continue to be unable to state what the evasion is. Bug, you might not realize it, but words require context.

                      SM

  12. Professor Turley, can you kindly explain why on Earth, when my photo is on my driver’s license (and obtaining same has become such an ordeal of documentation), my signature must still be verified by some poor poll worker? After all, signatures change, or am I mistaken? In the words of Charlie Brown . . . good grief!

    1. Anonymous the Stupid, you say that only because your intellectual abilities are severely compromised.

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