November 21, 2013

Manchin Statement on Voting Against Change of Senate Filibuster Rules

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) issued the following statement on why he voted against changing Senate filibuster rules:

“All West Virginians and Americans deserve a government that works for them, and I completely understand their frustration with the partisan gridlock in Washington. It has become increasingly clear to me that both parties have abused the filibuster by using it to gain political advantage, instead of truly debating an issue. With this in mind, I offered a commonsense compromise that would have allowed the President to put his team in place, but required greater consideration for nominees whose posts outlasted the President. I was willing to support modest changes to make the system more efficient, but my proposal was rejected. I voted against the rules changes today because they simply went too far. I firmly believe that the filibuster is a vital protection of the minority views and exactly why the Framers of our Constitution made the Senate the ‘cooling saucer.’ As the late, great Robert C. Byrd himself said in the months before his death, ‘While I welcome needed reform, we must always be mindful of our responsibility to preserve this institution’s special purpose.’

“It’s past time to fix Congress and make the legislative process work in a way that puts the American people ahead of petty politics. It’s past time Congress begins working together to move this country forward.”