First Thoughts: The Meaning of 60

First Thoughts: The Meaning of 60

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The Meaning Of 60: It lasted 238 days beyond Election Day and eventually entered all four seasons, but the never-ending Minnesota Senate race finally came to a conclusion yesterday, after the state Supreme Court unanimously ruled in Al Franken’s favor and after Norm Coleman conceded hours later. Most significantly, yesterday’s developments resulted in Democrats obtaining a filibuster-proof majority — 60 votes — in the Senate, and Dems want to have him seated by as early as Monday. Having 60 votes will shift the balance of power from the Republican Maine-iacs (Collins and Snowe) to the Joe Liebermans, Ben Nelsons, and Mary Landrieus, meaning that the upcoming fights over health care and energy will be on Democratic turf. Remember that stimulus debate back in February? Does anyone doubt it would have been different (in size and composition) had Franken been in the Senate then? As Rahm Emanuel told the New Yorker then, “No disrespect to Paul Krugman [who wanted a larger bill], but has he figured out how to seat the Minnesota senator?”

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