Headline Reaction (Partisan Fever Edition)
The headline in question, via the NYT: Partisan Fever in Senate Likely to Rise.
On the one hand, I expect the conservative commentariat’s collective head to explode after this vote and for there to be an overabundance of glee on the liberal side of things. This is a polarizing decision that will, in many ways, ramp up the partisan fever (to use the headline’s terminology, which was taken originally from something Obama said some time ago).
However, given that the basic state of governance these days is impasse based on partisan disagreement, I am not sure that from a practical point of view this change will matter all that much. In other words, the Republican approach to public policy of late has been obstruction, and while the rhetoric surrounding the obstruction may get more heated, the actual amount of obstruction is likely to remain roughly the same. Indeed, the change in the rules in the Senate now means a little less obstruction than there was just yesterday.
So, more partisan rhetoric and anger? Yup. A small bit of governing actually happening? Yup. This initially strikes me as a good trade, especially since the status quo ante already consisted of plenty of partisan anger and rhetoric combined with unreasonable obstruction to governing.