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Merkley on the filibuster

Sen. Jeff Merkley just sent this message to his supporters:

Minutes ago, the U.S. Senate voted to change the rules and end the practice of filibusters on presidential nominations to the executive branch and to the courts (except the Supreme Court).

This is historic. And you made it happen.

When I arrived in the Senate, I found a place that was dysfunctional — that didn't work the way it did when I was a young man, the way it had worked since the dawn of the Republic. I don't need to remind you: The Senate has been unable to act on too many critical issues.

But, together, we organized an historic grassroots campaign. Hundreds of thousands of Americans signed petitions, wrote letters, supported candidates who committed to filibuster reform. All told, millions of Americans spoke out.

And my fellow Democrats in the Senate heard you loud and clear. 

Today, we have taken an important step toward fixing the filibuster — and making the Senate work for ordinary Americans again.

The President will be able to fill executive positions critical to creating middle-class jobs, fixing the housing crisis, cleaning our air and water, holding big corporations accountable, and so much more. We'll also start making progress on ending the empty-bench crisis in our judiciary, filling critical judicial positions and ensuring that justice is no longer delayed and denied.

You made this happen. And with your support, we'll continue to lead the way and get America back on track.