White House Press Secretary refuses to answer questions on eliminating congressional filibuster after promising 'transparency'

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki refused to give a clear answer on whether or not President Joe Biden intends to move to eliminate the congressional filibuster.

Ari Hoffman Seattle WA

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on Thursday refused to give a clear answer on whether or not President Joe Biden intends to move to eliminate the congressional filibuster in order to pass his massive COVID relief bill.

NBC News' Kristen Welker asked Psaki at Thursday's press conference if Biden supported eliminating the filibuster to get an agenda passed, Psaki said that Biden spoke about "working together and bipartisanship," to tackle a crises. Psaki added, "that is his priority and is his preference so that's what he'll continue to work on, on day 2 of administration."

Politico's Anita Kumar Thursday asked again to which Psaki replied, "The President has been clear he wants to work with members of both parties and find bipartisan paths forward."

Kumar responded, "That doesn't specifically answer that unless I'm not understanding you."

Psaki retorted "I don't think I have more to add to my answer."

This even as Psaki, in her first press conference in her role as White House press secretary, said the President asked her to bring "transparency" back to the briefing room.

It is unclear if the thin Democrat majority in the Senate will be able to implement Biden's legislative agenda. Last week, the President revealed  his $1.9 trillion coronavirus economic relief plan

If the bill is unable to gain enough Republican support, Democrats can pass the bill through "budget reconciliation" or by eliminating the legislative filibuster. A filibuster can occurs when a bill does not gain 60 votes to end debate, and debate can roll on for as long as senators are able to hold the floor.

Additionally, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer could invoke the "nuclear option," a which would allow the Senate to end debate on legislation with only a simple majority of votes.

Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) stated his intentions to potentially do away with the filibuster altogether, saying "Leader McConnell's proposal is unacceptable—and it won't be accepted." This in response to McConnell's suggestion that the filibuster be preserved as method of debate and discourse in the senate.

Psaki said at her press briefing on Wednesday that Biden's "clear preference is to move forward with a bipartisan bill. "But we are also not going to take any tools off the table for how the Senate, the House and Senate can get this urgent package done."


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