This (from Matt Yglesias) is why Republicans would be crazy to do anything other than filibuster everything in sight…and why people (myself included) were stupid to ever consider the possibility that they would do otherwise:
Via Jon Chait, an interesting Pew survey reveals that just 26 percent of Americans know that it takes sixty votes to pass a bill in the Senate.
I don’t find that surprising, but it’s good to see it quantified. It’s also worth pointing out that one of the major failings of most political journalism is a perennial tendency to overstate the American people’s level of knowledge about politics. You never hear the impact of public ignorance about the filibuster discussed as a factor in the president’s fortunes. But I’d say the fact that people don’t understand how this works is an important element of what makes it so effective. To a small slice of Americans, the GOP’s minoritarian obstructionism is a heroic stand. To another small slice of Americans, the GOP’s minoritarian obstructionism is an undemocratic disaster. But to the majority of Americans it’s completely invisible and all they see is a Democratic Party that can’t get things done.
This is all going to get worse, not better. The question what Democrats can do about it. In my view, they have to change Senate rules as quickly as they can.