It simply isn’t accurate to say “Senate hampers passage of annual defense bill that funds BIW ships.” That was the headline in Wednesday’s Brunswick Times Record. Most members of the Senate wanted to consider and pass the bill, including both our own senators, Susan Collins and Angus King. So why didn’t it pass? Because all the other Republican Senators voted no to even considering the bill. And no, it isn’t true that “sixty senators needed to vote to open debate” on the National Defense Authorization Act. It takes a bare majority unless a filibuster is put in motion. Who insisted on the filibuster? Republican senators.

Credit where credit is due: thank you Sens. Collins and King. And blame where blame is due: to the Republican senators and their treacherous leader, Mitch McConnell, who puts partisan point-scoring ahead of national defense — and also ahead of democracy. What prevents the Senate from acting on this and many other bills are the senators from one party. It’s time we did away with the filibuster; it’s time we tried democracy.

Douglas C. Bennett,

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