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KGxvi11/21/2019 3:42:02 pm PST

re: #382 NO SMOCKING GUN!

If the Democrats win the Senate next year, first thing they should do (which they won’t) is abolish the filibuster. Second is grant statehood to D.C. and Puerto Rico and seat four new senators. Third is “reform” SCOTUS by adding four seats so there is a Justice for each federal circuit, and seat 4 new Democratic Justices. If they don’t, SCOTUS will strike down any progressive legislation they somehow manage to pass.

I wouldn’t abolish the filibuster, but I would reform it. Basically, say if you won’t vote for cloture, you have to actually filibuster and continue debate until you fall down. It is useful to slow down and stop bad bills from becoming laws (imagine how much more the GOP majority could have done in the first two years of Trump’s administration if they didn’t have to worry about getting passed cloture).

DC statehood is complicated by the 23rd Amendment, and unfortunately (unless there’s also a constitutional amendment for popular election of the president and vice-president) most likely means statehood can’t happen unless the Amendment is repealed. (Personally, I support statehood for DC, or Columbia or whatever name it takes, but this is a procedural issue we’ve been saddled with)

There still isn’t a consensus in Puerto Rico if they want statehood (and there’s no guarantee that once the statehood issue is resolved that they won’t elect at least one Republican senator). Granting statehood against the will of the people in the territory isn’t something that’s ever happened, and I can’t imagine it’s a good idea to try it with PR given the perceived history of imperialism in the Caribbean. (Again, personally, I support statehood, but it’s ultimately a decision for the people of Puerto Rico to make)

I agree with expanding the Supreme Court, but I don’t think you’ll get much popular support for “we are adding four new seats next year”. I suspect that if it happens, to be presumed “fair” it’d have to be set up that the seats are added over the course of 2 or 4 years - 2022, 2023, 2025, 2026 (basically two in the next presidential term and two in the subsequent term).