In five days we will learn if the reformers in the Senate have the votes to make endless obstruction in that body more difficult in the 112th Congress.
Talking Points Memo has a fine run down of the tic-tok and dance steps required to get this done. Steve Benen adds some more details here and Jonathan Bernstein filling in over at The Plum Line has yet more background, reporting and speculation on what might go wrong. For yet more background on the issue here is Ezra Klein’s interview with Senate reform leader, Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon.
A lot rests on what Vice President Joe Biden will do and whether or not Harry Reid sides with the reformers or uses the threat of them to cut a deal with McConnell for some changes short of full filibusterer/obstruction reform.
Over the next few days the clock is ticking and the behind the scenes planning, deal making and whip counting for votes will pick up steam.
As Tim F. has reminded us many times in the past, now might be a good to to call your Senators (again) and this time ask them to stand up for reform on January 5, 2011 (this action is especially encouraged if one or both of your Senators are Democrats). You can find your Senator here or from the Senate switchboard at (202) 224-3121. Tim’s Guide for first-time callers can be found here.
Senator Reid can be reached at (202) 224-3542 or by his Web contact form. Vice President Biden can be reached through this Web form or (202) 456-1111 for the comment line or the WH switchboard (202) 456-1414.
Chris Bowers and the folks over at Dkos (aka GOS) are also mobilizing folks for this effort.
What happens to the Senate Rules reform movement next week will define a lot of what can and/or what can not happen in Congress in the coming two years.
So, let’s get this party started.