President Donald Trump on Tuesday said the Senate should get rid of the legislative filibuster to pass healthcare and tax cut bills.
“The U.S. Senate should switch to 51 votes, immediately, and get Healthcare and TAX CUTS approved, fast and easy,” Trump tweeted. “Dems would do it, no doubt!”
The filibuster allows senators to hold up legislation without a 60-vote threshold.
Changing the floor rules to end the filibuster has been considered a “nuclear option” for lawmakers, as it theoretically could come back to bite the GOP if the Democrats were to retake the Senate.
In recent years, however, the party in control of the Senate has done away with other filibusters in an attempt to circumvent the opposition. Democrats eliminated the filibuster for executive and judicial nominees in 2013. And in April, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell scrapped the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees to confirm Trump nominee Neil Gorsuch.
The GOP is circumventing a possible filibuster for their healthcare bill by using the budget reconciliation process. That means that as long as the bill cuts the federal deficit, it is not subject to a 60-vote threshold.
Both the current healthcare bill, the American Health Care Act, and Trump’s tax reform principles have faced unanimous opposition from Democrats.
Trump’s suggestions followed a series of tweets Tuesday in which he criticised Germany and attacked reports on ties between his campaign and Russian officials.
Here’s the tweet:
The U.S. Senate should switch to 51 votes, immediately, and get Healthcare and TAX CUTS approved, fast and easy. Dems would do it, no doubt!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 30, 2017
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