Former Senate parliamentarian: Biden could play big role in reconciliation process
Former Senate parliamentarian Robert Dove discussed the history of reconciliation on MSNBC Monday morning. "Reconciliation has been used a lot, and I would never use the term illegitimate with regard to reconciliation," he said of the Senate maneuver, which was created in 1974 and revised in 1980 to restrict it to purely budgetary matters.
"It is a way, of course, of getting around the problem of the Senate filibuster," he explained.
Dove also reminded that Vice President Biden, as president of the Senate, could preside over the reconciliation process and make the decision about whether or not something is a budgetary item, even overruling Senate parliamentarian Alan Frumin.
"It is the decision of the vice president whether or not to play a role here," Dove said.
Ezra Klein also takes a look at reconciliation on his blog this morning, noting: "Reconciliation has, in general, been a Republican endeavor. Political scientist Joshua Tucker looked at the 19 times reconciliation was used between 1981 and 2005, and found that 14 of them were Republican initiatives. If you extend that analysis out to 2008, then 16 of 21 reconciliation bills were Republican."
March 1, 2010; 11:31 AM ET
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