Democrats’ stalled agenda raises party tensions

Democrats’ stalled agenda raises party tensions


For a second time in just a few weeks, Republicans used the filibuster to block Democrats from bringing key legislation to the Senate floor, stalling the party’s agenda and forcing lawmakers to confront the limits of a bare majority.

Democrats this week also began grappling with divisions within their party over whether to eliminate the 60-vote threshold that now makes it easy for the GOP to stop Democratic legislation from ever reaching the floor.

They are under pressure from the party’s liberal base, which is becoming increasingly frustrated as a backlog of crucial legislation piles up.

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More than 100 liberal groups wrote to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, urging him to end the filibuster.

“We cannot allow the filibuster to stand in the way of progress or imperil the health of our democracy,” several groups, including Common Cause, Public Citizen, and Working Families Party, wrote to Schumer.

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