Cloture and filibusters in the U.S. Congress
From OpenCongress Wiki
In the Senate, a filibuster is an attempt to extend debate on a proposal in order to delay or completely prevent a vote on its passage. The term first came into use the Senate, where rules permit a senator or a series of senators to speak for as long as they wish and on any topic they choose, unless a supermajority group of 60% of senators brings debate to a close by invoking cloture. Filibustering, for many years, was the primary tactic by which southern senators were able to block civil rights and anti-lynching legislation from coming to the floor. More recently, the filibuster received attention when the Republican-controlled 109th Congress threatened to end it in an attempt to stop Democrats from blocking President Bush’s judicial nominations.
110th Congress (2007-2008)
Legislative Transparency and Accountability Act
On January 17, an attempt to change ethics laws and rules failed after forty-five Republicans blocked it from coming to the floor for a vote. Several days later, the measure passed 96-2 after Senate leaders were able to compromise on their differences.
- See Congresspedia page on the Legislative Transparency and Accountability Act of 2007.
Raising the minimum wage
On January 23, forty-three Republicans blocked an attempt to raise the federal minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25 over two-years.
January 24, 2007
Several days later, the increase was passed 94-3 after several amendments allowing for small business tax breaks were added to the bill.