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Filibuster Reform: A Short Guide

The Senate rule has been modified over 160 times. It can be changed again to pass necessary voting rights protections.

Published: January 19, 2022

The Senate is currently debat­ing the Free­dom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act, a bill that combined two pieces of historic legis­la­tion intro­duced last year. This trans­form­at­ive demo­cracy reform pack­age would set national baseline stand­ards to protect voting access, end partisan gerry­man­der­ing, safe­guard elec­tions from sabot­age, restore the crit­ical protec­tions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and much more.

This essen­tial bill has major­ity support in the Senate. The only thing stand­ing in the way of strengthened protec­tions for all voters is the fili­buster. The fili­buster has been modi­fied over 160 times before, and it can be modi­fied now to restore the Senate to a place of fulsome, public debate as well as pass the Free­dom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act.

To learn more about the history of the Senate fili­buster, read the follow­ing resources:

Restor­ing the Senate: Key Facts as the Senate Considers Rules Reform (Janu­ary 2022)

Fixing the Senate Fili­buster by Mira Orte­gon and Colleen Olson (August 2021)

The Fili­buster, Explained by Tim Lau (April 2021)

The Case Against the Fili­buster by Caroline Fredrick­son (Octo­ber 2020)