Murkowski Statement on U.S. Senate “Power Grab”

Senator - We’ve Seen Where Party Line Votes Get Us: the Health Care Law

WASHINGTON, DC — Senator Lisa Murkowski today shared her disappointment with the United States Senate’s vote to eliminate filibuster rights for certain nominations – and according to Reuters news service, “Ditch a Historic Senate Rule” – taking away the Senate Minority’s capacity to influence or impact the nomination process, saying:

“Today, Senate Democrats decided they want more party line votes to push their agenda forward without needing to engage a single Republican.  It’s a power grab, plain and simple.  We’ve seen this movie before; it’s called the health care law, and I am astonished that only three Democrats refused to make this drastic political move to change the process.

“Yesterday I stood with Senate colleagues from the most conservative side of my party to the left end of the other and we advocated together for changes in the military justice system; ours was a coalition built upon negotiation and solid thinking.  We were working to build policy in a collaborative and cooperative way.  The action on the floor today was a stunning contrast to that collaborative effort.

“Today’s vote saddens me more than it angers me.  This is a sad day for the institution of the U.S. Senate, the legislative body designed to guard the views and the voices of the minority and to be – in the words of George Washington – the ‘saucer used to cool the tea.’ Senate Democrats have shattered that saucer into pieces.  I’m afraid today’s rules change will fundamentally alter our operations and lead us to being a less tempered body.”