For Democrats to be successful in passing their agenda — much of which has overwhelming support from most American voters — the filibuster has to go. There is no other way it can work, and frankly, it's entirely justified to destroy the relic of the Senate.
Think about it: what was the last GOOD, progressive thing the filibuster has done to move America forward? Now consider all the bad it has done. Consider the way it protected Jim Crow-era laws that violated people's livelihoods and civil rights; consider how it blocked amendments to the Constitution, including the right of women to vote; consider what it's doing now, blocking an important elections bill that would expose "dark" money in politics, make redistricting a nonpartisan affair in every U.S. state, and more.
It's hard to understand why even a few Democrats still want the filibuster around, after all the bad it has done, but I guess that's par for the course when it comes to that party, which is often its own worst enemy.
But beyond the end of the filibuster, the Senate needs more reforms. Intended to be a voice for states within the federal government, the Senate has become TOO UNREPRESENTATIVE, and TOO OBSTRUCTIVE, of the people's wishes, even without the filibuster figured into the equation.
Consider this: the five least populated states in the U.S. represent about 2.7 million people, while the five most populated states have more than 123 million. Yet those five low-populated states AND those five highly-populated states have 10 senators each among them.
The founders were worried about a tyranny of the majority, to be sure, of larger states reigning supreme over smaller ones. But they probably never intended for five states with a population less than 2.2 percent of five other states to have the same political power. They never meant for a tyranny of the minority, which is what we have in the Senate right now.
So what can be done to fix this? Here's what I think: the Senate SHOULD remain primarily a place for states' rights to be protected in the federal government. But we should add 25 extra seats to the "upper chamber" of Congress, elected to four-year terms using proportional representation — a system where people vote for parties based on lists of candidates they put forward, and seats are awarded based on a percentage that each party receives. If Republicans get 50 percent of the vote, Democrats 40 percent, and a third party gets 10 percent, then the 25 seats are divided based on those numbers, with Republicans getting 12 or 13 seats, Democrats 10 seats, and that third party getting the remaining three or four seats.
What would this do? It would solve a lot of issues, or at least diminish a good number of problems. It would allow the Senate to be a bit more responsive to the people's wishes across the country. It would allow residents in D.C. to have Senate representation. And importantly, it would place a "check" in the federal government from multiple voices and views (not just picking a singular president who might not represent the views of half the country), equivalent to one-fourth of the power that state-elected Senators have.
Oh, and one more thing: as shown in the example above, it would allow third party options and candidates into our politics…definitely a positive outcome.