Marching (Senate Style) Towards Majority Rule

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Abstract

The United States Senate is marching, Senate style, toward majority rule. Chamber rules have long required super, rather than simple, majorities to end debate on major and minor matters alike. But occasionally over its history - and several times over the past decade - the Senate has pared back procedural protections afforded to senators, making it easier for cohesive majorities to secure their policy goals. Both parties have pursued such changes - sometimes imposed by simple majority, other times by a bipartisan coalition. Why has the pace of change accelerated, and with what consequences for the Senate? In this article, I connect rising partisanship and electoral competition to the weakening of partisan commitments to Senate supermajority rule. No one can predict with any certainty whether the Senate will yet abolish the so-called "legislative filibuster."But pressures continue to mount towards that end.

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Binder, S. (2022). Marching (Senate Style) Towards Majority Rule. Forum (Germany), 19(4), 663–684. https://doi.org/10.1515/for-2022-2039

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