That being said, I still think she's dead-ass wrong, and I'm not sure what world she's living in.
I shall endeavor to recreate the exchange I had on the board:
ADMIRALMPJ (which would be me):
Explain to me where Senators get to stand up and talk, when these bills are getting killed and/or yanked during cloture votes?
Explain to me how Ryan Grim's article is inaccurate. Simply saying it is, is at best disingenuous. If you have a point, make it.
What almost always happens in the face of a Fake Filibuster is that the Majority (in this case, Democratic) leadership concedes defeat and takes its own bill down. What they would have to do (as Byrd did on campaign finance in 1988) is refuse to take the bill off the floor, and then put a quorum (51 senators) on the floor, so that the filibuster-er can't "suggest the absence of a quorum."
This is how you get around this problem suggested in the Huffpost piece:
As both Reid's memo and Dove explain, only one Republican would need to monitor the Senate floor. If the majority party tried to move to a vote, he could simply say, "I suggest the absence of a quorum."
Again, you may ultimately lose (as Byrd did), but you do get a chance to expose obstructionism for what it is. For the record, I felt this way when the Republicans were in charge, too. My first beat in Washington was Capitol Hill, and I have a lot of admiration for the legislative process. Unfortunately, as years have gone by, I have noticed that fewer and fewer legislators do.
What you wrote is clearer, but I still need one more thing clarified:
So, the Senate puts up HCR. It fails on a Cloture vote, lets say 51-49. It's not yanked by Reid, we do what Byrd did, and we being a process where we keep 51 Senators on the floor, waiting for what? A moment where there isn't quorum? That's what I wasn't clear on.
If you really think that the public is behind you, and really wants the legislation that is being blocked, you go out and make the case for it. And then you trust the voters (here's the Mr. Smith model, though he was the filibuster-er, but you get what I mean...) to put pressure on the people who are blocking it. The point here is to make your case, and trust that if you are right, the other guys are going to feel the heat.
I see what she's talking about. There is something you can do, but I (little more respectfully this time) still vehemently disagree with her.
Even Karen admits that there isn't a way forward should you stick to your guns as she suggests. While I would love to see the visuals of Republicans (and more than a few Democrats) blocking reform, the simple fact of the matter is if you (the Pro Reform side) stick to your guns and the antis stick to theirs...the Legislation dies anyway. In a results oriented culture...last I checked that still counts as a loss.
I subscribe to the central Nancy Pelosi basic philosophy. You have a bill. You whip the votes . Once you have the numbers on your side, you have a vote. I think that's how even the Senate is operating
I'm not a big fan of losing noble battles...which is were I diverge from a lot of my fellow progressives. Karen Tumulty's ideas, and thus Doris Kearn Goodwin's ideas, and Governor Ed Rendell's ideas do provide compelling visuals, they do put the Republicans and Conservadems on the spot...
...but they don't produce a damn bill.