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By Theo Lippman Jr | June 10, 2003
AMONG MY souvenirs is a roster that reporters in the Senate press gallery use to count the votes during a roll call. I used it 39 years ago today. For the first time, the Senate was invoking cloture - forced ending of debate - on a civil rights bill. That may have been the most important legislative event in the 20th century. The Senate of old regarded unlimited debate as sacred. From the earliest days of the republic, there was no way to stop a senator or group of senators from stalling any bill to death.
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By Michael Gold, The Baltimore Sun | November 4, 2013
The Employment Non-Discrimination Act, a bill that would ban hiring and employment discrimination against LGBT individuals, will proceed in the Senate after 61 senators voted for a cloture motion that will lead to a final vote on the bill. Maryland Senators Barbara A. Mikulski and Ben Cardin were among the legislators to vote "yes" on cloture, which limits the amount of time ENDA can be debated before a final vote on the measure is eventually held.  Seven Republicans voted in support of the bill: ENDA co-sponsors Sens.
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NEWS
By THEO LIPPMAN JR | June 30, 1994
FORMER SEN. Charles McC. Mathias is a member of Action, Not Gridlock! (ANG!) -- an organization calling for an end to the filibuster in the Senate.The filibuster is the parliamentary maneuver that allows a minority to kill a bill by preventing a vote on it. Filibusterers refuse to stop talking and give up the floor. Senate-type bodies have had rules allowing such at least since Caesar's day. It takes 60 votes in today's 100-member U.S. Senate to shut filibusterers LTC up and sit them down.
NEWS
By Ronald Weich | March 10, 2013
The filibuster is back in the news, thanks to Sen. Rand Paul's nearly 13-hour talkathon on U.S. drone policy last week. Putting aside the merits of Mr. Paul's national security views, his feat of endurance was in the best tradition of the Senate. He used his right to unlimited debate on the Senate floor to draw the attention of his fellow citizens to an issue of profound national importance. Other recent filibusters are less noble. Last month, senators used the rules to delay, for little apparent reason, confirmation of their former colleague Chuck Hagel to be secretary of defense.
NEWS
By THEO LIPPMAN JR | June 10, 1993
LANI GUINIER complained that a permanent white majorit often denies a permanent black minority the equal right to decide issues of importance to blacks.One of her solutions is to give blacks in Congress and legislatures the right to overcome majorities. Let's take the race issue out of this and see what we have.The 350,000 residents of the Eastern Shore are a permanent minority in the state. There are ten times as many citizens in Baltimore City and the Maryland suburbs between it and D.C.These two groups have different interests.
NEWS
By Ronald Weich | March 10, 2013
The filibuster is back in the news, thanks to Sen. Rand Paul's nearly 13-hour talkathon on U.S. drone policy last week. Putting aside the merits of Mr. Paul's national security views, his feat of endurance was in the best tradition of the Senate. He used his right to unlimited debate on the Senate floor to draw the attention of his fellow citizens to an issue of profound national importance. Other recent filibusters are less noble. Last month, senators used the rules to delay, for little apparent reason, confirmation of their former colleague Chuck Hagel to be secretary of defense.
NEWS
March 29, 2001
ONE FILIBUSTER was surmounted this week by backers of a gay-rights bill in the Maryland Senate, but supporters must remain on guard. Passage of this important civil rights measure isn't assured. Emotions run high on this proposal to give gays and lesbians housing and employment anti-discrimination protection. Some conservatives miscast the bill as a government endorsement of sexual behavior. It's not. It simply adds the words "sexual orientation" to the list of reasons for which discrimination is prohibited in housing and the work force.
NEWS
By C. Fraser Smith and C. Fraser Smith,SUN STAFF | April 14, 1999
Maryland's legislature has 188 members, but important issues are often settled by just one. Consider the recent exploits of Anne Arundel County Sen. Robert R. Neall.The veteran Republican lawmaker conducted two successful filibusters during the General Assembly session that ended at midnight Monday, frustrating Gov. Parris N. Glendening and the Democratic-controlled state Senate.A master of the state budget, a gifted speaker and an able parliamentary tactician, Neall called on all of these skills to cut the governor's proposed cigarette tax increase and to defeat Glendening's effort to put 8,000 university employees under the state's new collective-bargaining law.During the weekend, Neall led Republican and Democratic senators in an attack on the tax increase that Glendening had pegged at $1 pack.
NEWS
By Thomas F. Schaller | January 26, 2010
The story in Washington is that President Barack Obama and the Democrats are reeling in the wake of two recent decisions. The first was a choice by the masses of Massachusetts: They sent Republican Scott Brown to the U.S. Senate in Ted Kennedy's former seat. The second was an edict by five Washington elites: In its 5-4 Citizens United ruling, the Supreme Court rescinded the long-standing prohibition against corporations using business income to make campaign contributions. A one-seat reduction in what was a 60-seat Democratic majority, coupled with a one-vote majority on a Supreme Court, have combined to end the Obama era and stifle the entire Democratic agenda.
NEWS
November 29, 2010
Amid the sour partisan rancor in Washington, there is a glimmer of sweet hope. The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act stands a good chance to pass the Senate on Monday night. The bill, which increases the Food and Drug Administration's authority over the food supply, has been worked on by Republicans and Democrats for two years. The finished product, while not a four-star creation, is certainly palatable. The bill would give the FDA mandatory recall authority — a power it oddly now lacks — as well as the authority to test widely for dangerous pathogens and trace the outbreaks back to their source.
NEWS
November 29, 2010
Amid the sour partisan rancor in Washington, there is a glimmer of sweet hope. The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act stands a good chance to pass the Senate on Monday night. The bill, which increases the Food and Drug Administration's authority over the food supply, has been worked on by Republicans and Democrats for two years. The finished product, while not a four-star creation, is certainly palatable. The bill would give the FDA mandatory recall authority — a power it oddly now lacks — as well as the authority to test widely for dangerous pathogens and trace the outbreaks back to their source.
NEWS
By Thomas F. Schaller | January 26, 2010
The story in Washington is that President Barack Obama and the Democrats are reeling in the wake of two recent decisions. The first was a choice by the masses of Massachusetts: They sent Republican Scott Brown to the U.S. Senate in Ted Kennedy's former seat. The second was an edict by five Washington elites: In its 5-4 Citizens United ruling, the Supreme Court rescinded the long-standing prohibition against corporations using business income to make campaign contributions. A one-seat reduction in what was a 60-seat Democratic majority, coupled with a one-vote majority on a Supreme Court, have combined to end the Obama era and stifle the entire Democratic agenda.
NEWS
By Jonah Goldberg | August 3, 2007
Can you name all three branches of government? Can you name even one? Do you know who your congressman is? Your senators? Do you even know how many senators each state gets? If you know the answers to these questions, you're in the minority. A very high percentage of the U.S. electorate isn't very well qualified to vote, if by "qualified" you mean having a basic understanding of our government, its functions and its challenges. Almost half of the American public doesn't know that each state gets two senators.
NEWS
By David Nitkin, Sumathi Reddy and Ivan Penn and David Nitkin, Sumathi Reddy and Ivan Penn,SUN STAFF | April 12, 2005
The Maryland General Assembly concluded its 90-day session last night riven by the same partisan feuding in which it began, with a divisive plan to spend state money on embryonic stem-cell research dying under the threat of a Senate filibuster that never came to pass. The political jockeying between Republican Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and a Democrat-controlled legislature intensified in the third year of the governor's term and looks to continue through the next election. With confetti dropping inside the State House at midnight, Democratic leaders said they had done right by working Marylanders this year, increasing the state's minimum wage to $6.15 an hour and by imposing a tax on large corporations - effectively just Wal-Mart - that do not spend a prescribed percentage of payroll on employee health benefits.
NEWS
By David Nitkin, Sumathi Reddy and Ivan Penn and David Nitkin, Sumathi Reddy and Ivan Penn,SUN STAFF | April 12, 2005
The Maryland General Assembly concluded its 90-day session last night riven by the same partisan feuding in which it began, with a divisive plan to spend state money on embryonic stem-cell research dying under the threat of a Senate filibuster that never came to pass. The political jockeying between Republican Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and a Democrat-controlled legislature intensified in the third year of the governor's term and looks to continue through the next election. With confetti dropping inside the State House at midnight, Democratic leaders said they had done right by working Marylanders this year, increasing the state's minimum wage to $6.15 an hour and by imposing a tax on large corporations - effectively just Wal-Mart - that do not spend a prescribed percentage of payroll on employee health benefits.
NEWS
By Theo Lippman Jr | June 10, 2003
AMONG MY souvenirs is a roster that reporters in the Senate press gallery use to count the votes during a roll call. I used it 39 years ago today. For the first time, the Senate was invoking cloture - forced ending of debate - on a civil rights bill. That may have been the most important legislative event in the 20th century. The Senate of old regarded unlimited debate as sacred. From the earliest days of the republic, there was no way to stop a senator or group of senators from stalling any bill to death.
NEWS
By Jonah Goldberg | August 3, 2007
Can you name all three branches of government? Can you name even one? Do you know who your congressman is? Your senators? Do you even know how many senators each state gets? If you know the answers to these questions, you're in the minority. A very high percentage of the U.S. electorate isn't very well qualified to vote, if by "qualified" you mean having a basic understanding of our government, its functions and its challenges. Almost half of the American public doesn't know that each state gets two senators.
NEWS
By GEORGE F. WILL | December 3, 1992
Washington. -- Carol Braun, Democratic senator-elect from Illinois, says she and others elected last month have a mandate for ''change'' to end ''gridlock'' and ''open up the [political] process.'' Well.Change? Ms. Braun promised Illinois she would toil unsleepingly to increase the state's take of federal dollars. On television last Sunday, after she cited all the social ills she attributes to bad ''allocation'' of those dollars, she had this exchange:Interviewer: ''When 50 states have two senators, all committed to maximizing the flow of federal dollars to their states, isn't that part of the problem?
NEWS
By LOS ANGELES TIMES | October 6, 2001
WASHINGTON - Mike Mansfield, the longest-serving Senate majority leader, who shepherded landmark legislation in the 1960s and 1970s on issues from civil rights to political reform and set a standard for civility in a lawmaking arena now often the scene of partisan vitriol, died yesterday. He was 98. Mansfield, who underwent surgery Sept. 7 to have a pacemaker implanted in his chest, died at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, said Charles Ferris, his attorney and one-time Senate aide. After he left the Senate in 1977, Mansfield was U.S. ambassador to Japan and wielded significant influence in Tokyo for more than 11 years as the emissary of Democratic and Republican presidents.
NEWS
March 29, 2001
ONE FILIBUSTER was surmounted this week by backers of a gay-rights bill in the Maryland Senate, but supporters must remain on guard. Passage of this important civil rights measure isn't assured. Emotions run high on this proposal to give gays and lesbians housing and employment anti-discrimination protection. Some conservatives miscast the bill as a government endorsement of sexual behavior. It's not. It simply adds the words "sexual orientation" to the list of reasons for which discrimination is prohibited in housing and the work force.
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