The well of the Senate right now is home to something resembling an actual filibuster, an extended debated, mounted against the tax cut deal. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) are trading off time, which looked very necessary after two hours of speaking from Sanders left him visibly more tired. Michael Bennet of Colorado, who made his Senate bid this year all about the inability of the institution to get anything done, is presiding.
Sanders and Brown have, so far, hit the same points they’ve been making in frenzied TV appearances. Sanders is finding plenty of ways to make the same arguments. “We’re all interested in the winners and losers,” he said. “Patriots, Red Sox, who won the game? Who’s the winner, who’s the loser? In this economy, the richest 1 percent are the winners.” He also threatened to do this again: “If it means staying through Christmas eve,” Sanders said, “through New Years, that is our job.”
Jim DeMint is not participating in the filibuster; I reported yesterday that his promise to vote against cloture is not a promise to take the floor and slow down the bill.
UPDATE: Mary Landrieu joined in the fun, and ups the folksiness level. “I went to Catholic school,” she said. “Every week, every week, I would hear the priest say: Don’t be greedy. Did I go to the wrong school?”