During the July 17 edition of ABC’s Good Morning America, co-anchor Diane Sawyer falsely claimed that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) “vows to filibuster, talking all night to close out all topics besides a vote on Iraqi troop withdrawals.” Sawyer was referring to Reid’s plan to hold an all-night Senate debate prior to the July 18 cloture vote on a Democratic proposal to withdraw troops from Iraq.
However, by planning to extend the Senate session throughout the night, Reid is not “vow[ing] to filibuster,” as Sawyer reported. Rather, he is highlighting the Republicans’ blocking of an up-or-down vote on the proposal; in other words, it is the Republicans who are filibustering the withdrawal proposal by requiring that 60 senators vote for the amendment in order for it to pass.
MEDIA MATTERS: Please Ask Mike Nichols, Surely He Knows What A Filibuster Is
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INQUIRER: “WASHINGTON – Democrats rolled out cots and ordered pizzas as they settled in for a marathon Senate debate on Iraq last night that featured numerous speeches but little chance of getting any closer to resolving the stalemate over how to end the war. Republicans were determined to block legislation forcing a withdrawal of combat troops, which was expected to come before bleary-eyed senators this morning in the nonstop session.”