Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) says he has the 51 votes needed for filibuster reform and will have a vote in the next day and a half. What reform will look like is not clear and presumably negotiations are still happening. Reid and Senate Minority Leader McConnell (R-KY) have been meeting in recent days, but no progress has been reported. The main issue is whether reforms will be modest and still give the minority party substantial power in blocking legislation or stronger reforms that will make it much more difficult to filibuster will pass. Many in Reid's party are pushing for the bolder option given the sheer number of filibusters the GOP has conducted in recent years.
Immigration watchers should be paying attention because many of those filibusters have been used to stop immigration legislation in the past and filibuster reform could help significantly in moving immigration legislation going forward.
Greg Siskind is a partner in Siskind Susser's Memphis, Tennessee, office. After graduating magna cum laude from Vanderbilt University, he received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Chicago. Mr. Siskind is a member of AILA, a board member of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, and a member of the ABA, where he serves on the LPM Publishing Board as Marketing Vice Chairman. He is the author of several books, including the J Visa Guidebook and The Lawyer's Guide to Marketing on the Internet. Mr. Siskind practices all areas of immigration law, specializing in immigration matters of the health care and technology industries. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.