The Filibuster May Pose a Problem For Republicans Going Forward

The congressional filibuster is inherently designed to favor the party that is not in power. During the Trump administration, when Republicans controlled Congress, Democrats repeatedly used the filibuster without hesitation to obstruct various conservative bills.

However, since Democrats took back control of the House and Senate, they’ve adopted the polar opposite attitude concerning the filibuster. Naturally, the filibuster now favors Republicans as the minority party in Congress.

Some of the latest Democratic talking points about the filibuster are that it’s racist and should be eliminated. Democrats tried to do this months ago; however, they ultimately couldn’t secure the votes.

Nevertheless, with Republicans on track to win back control of Congress, the filibuster could very well prove to be a thorn in their side.

A Sneak Peek into the Future?
Congressional Republicans have said upon winning the midterms, they plan to finish building Trump’s border wall, reinstate the Keystone XL pipeline, and push through a series of other much-needed initiatives.

However, with Democrats being the minority party — granted that the GOP wins the midterms — the filibuster will be at their disposal. Democrats, since Biden’s time in office, have been clear they have no intentions of working with Republicans.

Even if the GOP is able to pass its bills in the House with flying colors, they could very well go to die in the Senate. In order to avoid a filibuster, Republicans would need to seriously expand the number of their in-party colleagues holding Senate seats.

Thus far, 60 Senate votes are necessary to steer clear of the filibuster. Without this, the GOP will face an uphill battle, even if the party collectively controls Congress.

A Possible Work Around?
Despite the problem that the filibuster could pose for Republicans working to move forward with legislation after the midterms, there may be a workaround.

On some occasions, moderate Democrat Sens. Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) have voted with Republicans. Both moderate Democrats have done this even at the cost of earning their own party’s rage.

Depending on how many seats Republicans win in both the House and the Senate, getting the votes of Manchin and Sinema could be a path forward for the party.

The impact the filibuster has on Republicans after the midterms will ultimately depend upon how strong a hold the party has in Congress after November’s elections.