President Obama makes statement from press briefing room. (Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images) President Obama makes statement from press briefing room. (Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images)

My Post colleague James Downie succinctly makes the case for why “Republicans only have themselves to blame” for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s move to end filibusters (the “nuclear option”) on most presidential nominations. He runs through the list of Republican obstruction that led us to this fateful day. But President Obama, during his statement this afternoon, zeroed in on two of the reasons why today’s action — despite the danger it poses if/when the Senate or the White House goes back to Republican control — was necessary.

But today’s pattern of obstruction — it just isn’t normal. It’s not what our founders envisioned. A deliberate and determined effort to obstruct everything, no matter what the merits, just to re-fight the result of an election is not normal, and for the sake of future generations, we can’t let it become normal. . . .

And I just want to remind everybody what’s at stake here is not my ability to fulfill my constitutional duty; what’s at stake is the ability of any president to fulfill his or her constitutional duty.

Republicans have been re-fighting the last election since 2009. And since they can’t beat Obama at the ballot box, they’ve opted to stop him through maddening obstruction that is doing serious harm to this country and to the presidency.“[T]he vote today I think is an indication that a majority of senators believe, as I believe, that enough is enough,” Obama said today.


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