THE BLOG

Reforming the Senate

01/06/2011 12:18 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

One thing I hear time and again from Coloradans in every corner of our state is that Washington needs to quit the bickering and partisan politics. We need to reform Washington now more than ever to make sure it works for Coloradans and all Americans. A key piece of that reform is fixing the rules of the Senate itself.

I've been pushing for reform of the filibuster and other arcane procedures since I came to Washington. The Senate's rules and traditions are supposed to encourage Senators to get along, foster debate and get the people's business done. Yet a few rules are doing just the opposite, blocking progress on our most pressing challenges. We've been prevented from moving forward on important issues like strengthening our economic recovery and creating jobs, and it's not just about having a majority of support.

Often times, political games prevent Senators from even beginning to debate some of the most important issues. Good ideas, solutions from both parties, get tossed by the wayside because of obstruction. Improving some of the rules under which the Senate functions can begin to replace some of the bad habits Washington has developed, with better ones.

Now, it is time for action. This week, several of my colleagues and I have begun a process to challenge the broken rules in the Senate and reform the filibuster. We will face resistance, but it is critical that we move forward on reform so we can get back to doing Colorado's business.

My Plan to Reform the Filibuster:

  • * End the filibuster for motions to proceed
  • * Require 41 Senators to show up to vote in order to block cloture
  • * Encourage bipartisanship
  • * End Secret Holds
  • Cross-posted at Colorado Pols.