February 2, 2010

Filibuster Proof

Despite all the attention paid to the 60th vote in the U.S. Senate, very few Americans seem to know what the hullabaloo is about. Only 26% correctly say that it requires 60 votes to break a filibuster in the Senate, and therefore bring a bill to the floor so it can be voted on. Roughly as many Americans (25%) believe it requires only a majority (51) while 12% think it takes 67 (7%) or 75 (5%) Senate votes. Fully 37% offered that they did not know. Neither side of the political divide scores well on the filibuster question; just 30% of Republicans and 25% of Democrats are knowledgeable about the 60-vote rule. This may be because most Americans, despite reporting interest in the health care debate, aren’t following the votes all that closely. Just a third (32%) of Americans know that no Republicans voted for health care reform in the Senate. A similar percentage thought the bill had more GOP support; 13% said 5 Republicans had voted for reform and a respective 8% said the bill got 10 or 20 GOP votes. Read More