Brad notes, hilariously, that Republicans have been running the House for a week and they're already flip-flopping on the merits of the filibuster:
Earlier this morning, Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor kept insisting to reporters, "The Senate ought not to be a place where legislation goes into a dead end." (He said some variation of this three times.) Cantor's frustrated because the House is all set to repeal health care reform, and Harry Reid has said he's not even going to bother bringing the bill up for consideration in the still-barely-Democratic Senate. " The American people deserve a full hearing," Cantor said, "they deserve to see this legislation go to the Senate for a full vote."
Of course, the Senate isn't even blocking the bill they want, because even if it passed, President Obama would veto it. The Senate is merely blocking the message vote Republicans want to hold. They can't even hew to their principles when an ineffectual message vote is at stake!
I continue to believe that the filibuster will be eliminated or curtailed when Republicans gain simultaneous control of the House, the presidency, and more than 49 but fewer than 60 Senators. Conservatives have invested a lot of energy into defending the supermajority requirement in the Senate, but the ideological basis of that commitment is tissue-thin and will disappear as soon as it's inconvenient.
The bad news is that this move will allow a lot of right-wing legislation. The good news is that, eventually, it will allow liberal legislation that will gain public approval and stand the test of time better than right-wing legislation does.