Gun control expansion blocked under threat of filibuster

Whether or not you think today was “a shameful day for Washington”, the process by which additional gun control measures were defeated in the Senate is quite interesting.


A filibuster in the United States Senate usually refers to any dilatory or obstructive tactics used to prevent a measure from being brought to a vote. The most common form of filibuster occurs when a senator attempts to delay or entirely prevent a vote on a bill by extending the debate on the measure, but other dilatory tactics exist. The rules permit a senator, or a series of senators, to speak for as long as they wish and on any topic they choose, unless “three-fifths of the Senators duly chosen and sworn”[^1] (usually 60 out of 100 senators) brings debate to a close by invoking cloture under Senate Rule XXII.

The longest filibuster on record, famously, was Sen. Strom Thurmond, who spoke for 24 hours and 18 minutes.