Sen. Harkin: Hey, let’s expand this nuclear option thing to legislation, too

Via The Hill:

After the Senate voted to change filibuster rules Thursday, Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) called for more reforms.

“This has been escalating for a long period of time and it was time to stop it and that’s what we did this morning,” Harkin said. “Now we need to take it a step farther and change the filibuster rules on legislation.”

Fifty-two Democratic senators voted to limit the minority party’s right to filibuster executive branch and judicial nominees. Under the old rules, 60 votes were necessary to end debate on nominees, but Democrats changed the rules to require a simple majority.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) was prompted to use the “nuclear option” to change the Senate rules with a simple majority after Republicans blocked three of President Obama’s nominees to the D.C. Circuit Court.

The nuclear option — which gets its name from the damage done to bipartisan relationships — allows a simple-majority to change the Senate rules rather than the usual super majority.

Republicans accused Democrats of being shortsighted by “breaking the rules to change the rules.”

“This is a blatant power grab,” Sen. Chuck Grassley said. “This is about the other side not getting everything they want when they want it.”

Harkin said it was a “good day” for the Senate and called for more reforms.

Move along here, no naked power grabs to see …

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