Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) obtained a historical past lesson on social media on Tuesday after he incorrectly claimed that the filibuster had “no racial history at all, none.”
There have been rising calls amongst Democrats to remove the filibuster, which successfully requires 60 votes to advance most laws and at the moment means Republicans can block main motion within the cut up Senate. McConnell known as these efforts “a power grab.”
Several lawmakers and historians have pointed out that the filibuster was traditionally used to dam civil rights laws, with former President Barack Obama final 12 months calling it a “Jim Crow relic” that ought to be eradicated.
McConnell appeared to vary, however later within the day, his spokesperson Doug Andres claimed the Senate minority chief was referring only to the origins of the filibuster. Andres pointed to McConnell’s earlier feedback on the Senate flooring, which did certainly give attention to the origins of the follow.
The Washington Post, which McConnell cited throughout his flooring remarks, named three possible origins for the filibuster within the U.S. Senate, none of which have been linked to slavery or racism. Yet when talking to the media later, McConnell made a way more sweeping declare.
“It has no racial history at all, none, so there’s no dispute among historians about that,” McConnell mentioned.
That’s incorrect, as the identical Post article McConnell cited earlier identified. It famous that an early adopter of the filibuster used it to dam motion in opposition to slavery and that the process was used within the Senate for practically a century to halt civil rights laws.
McConnell additionally quoted a PolitiFact article that acknowledged: “Historians told PolitiFact that the filibuster did not emerge from debates over slavery or segregation.” He didn’t quote the subsequent sentence: “However, they agreed that the parliamentary tactic was carefully affiliated with opposition to civil rights for greater than a century.
Given his declare that the filibuster had “no racial history at all,” McConnell was given a historical past lesson on Twitter:
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