Wednesday, May 11, 2005

More on the filibuster

In an earlier post, I discussed the issue of the Senate majority with Curious JD. Here is what Captain Ed had to say:
The pinnacle of this stupidity came last month, when a rash of comments led by Senator Joe Biden claimed that the GOP didn't have a majority at all. His reasoning was that the Democrats in the Senate represented a larger percentage of the population and that meant that the 44 Democrats had more of a mandate to run the Senate than the 55 Republicans did. Despite the questionable nature of this calculation -- does Minnesota count for Mark Dayton or Norm Coleman? -- the idea that the Democrats have a mandate for rule is ludicrous on its face. First, they lost a swing of eight seats in the last election. Second, the House and the Presidency both went to the GOP, and the former is actually based on population. Third, and it's embarassing to have to explain this to one of our nation's leaders, the Senate isn't supposed to provide proportional representation in Congress. Senators represent states, not people, which is why they have the duty to confirm executive-branch nominations. That duty went specifically to the Senators so that the states could ensure that the federal government composed itself in a manner acceptable to the majority of the states. Not a supermajority, for that matter, which the Constitution explicitly reserved for other purposes.