Former President Donald Trump argued on Monday that U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., is “doing right thing” by saying “no” to ending the filibuster.
Trump told FOX Business’ “Varney & Co.” that if the filibuster was removed, which he called “so radical liberal,” court packing would take place and other “very bad things that were unthinkable.”
In April, Manchin firmly planted his foot down, penning an op-ed on his decision not to vote in favor of weakening or removing the filibuster.
“I have said it before and will say it again to remove any shred of doubt: There is no circumstance in which I will vote to eliminate or weaken the filibuster,” Manchin said in an article for the Washington Post. “The time has come to end these political games, and to usher a new era of bipartisanship where we find common ground on the major policy debates facing our nation.”
MANCHIN SAYS HE’LL NEVER CHANGE MIND ON FILIBUSTER
Manchin said he could not justify to his constituents a valid reason to weaken the measure that currently requires the Senate have at least a 60-40 vote in order to pass a bill.
Critics of the practice say it works as a policy clog, and in a 50-50 split Senate, it makes passing legislation in a partisan upper chamber problematic.
Left-wing Democrats in the House like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Rep. Pramila Jayapal of Washington have repeatedly called for filibuster reform or removal.
Trump stressed to host Stuart Varney said the filibuster is “an important thing otherwise you are going to be packing the court [and] you are going to be doing all sorts of very, very bad things that were unthinkable and were never even brought up during the election.”
Trump argued that “the most radical left people cannot believe what’s happening.”
The filibuster has seen changes since its implementation in the early 1900’s with rules in the past requiring a senator to stand on the chamber’s floors and continuously talk in order to stall a vote on legislation they objected to. However, by the 1970’s this was no longer required. Senators now are able to lodge their objection to a bill, triggering the 60-vote requirement to advance the bill.
The convenience of easier filibuster requirements has meant a drastic increase in bill stagnation. In 2019-2020 there were 298 votes held in an attempt to overcome a filibuster, a stark increase in the six such votes held in 1969-1970, 50 years prior, Reuters reported.
Manchin noted that both Democrats and Republicans have a duty to find compromise in addressing legislation.
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“Senate Democrats must avoid the temptation to abandon our Republican colleagues on important national issues. Republicans, however, have a responsibility to stop saying no, and participate in finding real compromise with Democrats,” Manchin said.
Fox News’ Caitlin McFall contributed to this report.