Press Releases

Alexander Introduces Resolution to Require Simple Majority on Presidential Nominations

Press release from U. S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn.; February 4, 2015:

WASHINGTON, Feb. 4, 2015 – U.S. Senators Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) today introduced a resolution to change the Senate rules that they said would “establish by rule the Senate tradition of approving presidential nominations by a simple majority vote.”

In a joint statement, the senators said: “This rules change would establish by rule the Senate tradition of approving presidential nominations of Cabinet members and judges by a simple majority vote, which existed from the time Thomas Jefferson wrote the rules in 1789 until 2003, when Democrats began filibustering federal circuit court of appeals nominees. Most importantly, it would change the rules the right way: through a two-thirds vote, which is what the existing rules provide. Unfortunately, on Nov. 21, 2013, Democrats broke the rules without even attempting to get the 67 votes required to change the rules, in order to put three judges on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. As former Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) noted at the time, quoting former Sen. Arthur Vandenberg: ‘If a majority of the Senate can change its rules at any time, there are no rules.’”

The proposal will be considered by the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration, and would ultimately require a two-thirds vote by the entire U.S. Senate to change the Senate’s rules. This is in contrast to Nov. 21, 2013, when the Democratic majority invoked what is known as the “nuclear option,” changing the precedent of the Senate with just 51 votes so that they could approve all presidential nominees – except for U.S. Supreme Court – with a simple majority.


NewsTracker Transparency and Elections

Jacobs Staying Out of Political Ring, Leaves Alexander to Other Challengers

“Kane” won’t try to lay the smackdown on Lamar Alexander in 2014.

Professional Wrestler and Tennessee Liberty Alliance co-founder Glenn Jacobs, who goes by that nom de guerre when he’s slapping opponents around the ring , had earlier this year hinted at the possibility that he’d grapple with Alexander for the 2014 GOP U.S. Senate nomination.

However, Kane acknowledged to TNReport during a Rutherford County Campaign for Liberty event in Murfreesboro earlier this week that he’s decided against joining the fracas with state Rep. Joe Carr, who last week announced he was abandoning his run for the 4th district U.S. House seat in favor of taking on Alexander.

Jacobs isn’t planning to run for elected office any time soon, but he said he intends to become more involved in state and local politics.

And while he himself doesn’t feel up to taking on the challenge, Jacobs still believes Alexander needs to go.

“One thing I think we all can agree on is that Sen. Alexander has some real problems for small-government conservatives and libertarians,” Jacobs said. “Despite the fact that he calls himself a conservative, if you look at his record it’s not conservative. Sen. Alexander recently released a letter to the media, an op-ed in the Tennessean, in which he rebutted a letter that 20 Tea Party and Conservative groups in Tennessee signed.”

“It was interesting to me that Sen. Alexander didn’t talk about his actual job,” Jacobs continued, “which is supporting, defending the U.S. Constitution. Instead he talked about all of the great things that he had done, which were all really big government things. And, of course this is a philosophical question, and some people are going to say, well, those are important things, and they are. But his primary job is to defend and support the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. That didn’t make it into his letter.”

Jacobs also took a swipe at Tennessee’s other Republican U.S. Senator, Bob Corker, for referring to Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee’s efforts to “defund” Obamacare as “silly.” Corker is cut from a conciliatory cloth similar to Alexander, said Jacobs.

“I’m all for compromise, as long as that compromise moves us towards individual liberty and economic freedom,” said Jacobs. “The problem is now…for almost since the inception of the country, we’ve been compromising in the other way, towards statism, towards less individual freedom and towards controlled markets.”

“If our moderate senators would become more moderate in the direction of liberty, I’d be all for compromise. Unfortunately, they are compromising the other way, and are compromising away our rights and freedoms.”