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Manchin’s Agenda to ‘Restore the Senate’ Together with the Bipartisan Group

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) met with a bipartisan group of senators this week to talk about how to “restore the Senate,” which included making it easier to submit legislation.

Manchin convenes bipartisan group to discuss Senate rules reform (Photo theAmericanprospect)

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) met with a bipartisan group of senators this week to discuss ways to “restore the Senate,”

Restore the Senate Agenda

on Monday night, the group of senators met with Manchin’s Senate basement office, including Democratic Sens. Tim Kaine (Va.) and Jon Tester (Mont.) and GOP Sens. Mike Rounds (S.D.), Susan Collins (Maine), Mitt Romney (Utah), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Roy Blunt (Mo.), to have an informal talk over several different occasions to figure out a way to make it simpler and easier towards the subject matter.

An idea that was cited during the meeting was getting rid of the 60-vote hurdle on proceeding with the legislation, though nothing was yet implemented though a change would still require 60 votes to end the debate towards the legislation. Rounds said he supported eliminating the 60-vote barrier for commencing debate on a bill, but he opposed eliminating the filibuster requirement for ending debate on a measure. In addition, the meeting was about how to “restore the Senate.” Tester said The Hill initially reported last week that Manchin, who has been loud in his opposition to eliminating the filibuster, was meeting with Republicans to discuss smaller rule changes that could make it easier to get amendments or bills to the floor. Furthermore, the group is the most current in recent years to consider prospective changes to Senate rules that do not eliminate the legislative filibuster. But those negotiations, including among a bipartisan group earlier this year that featured many of the same members, broke apart without getting a result.

Democrats are Trying to Get Manchin’s Support

The bipartisan group with the minor rule changes, on the other hand, comes as Democrats try to re-engage Manchin in reforming the legislative filibuster, which has stymied efforts to pass voting rights and other issues through the Senate.

The Senators would need 67 votes to modify the rules, which would require significant GOP support, or Democrats might try to change the rules on their own, which would require the backing of all 50 Democrats, including Manchin’s.

Furthermore, last week Manchin was asked if he would support using the nuclear option, he replied saying it should be bipartisan “why would you go nuclear option?” Machin clarified that he was unaware of the situation.