Manchin and Sinema will be the last pro-filibuster Democrats

The leading Democratic Senate challengers for 2022, even in tough swing states such as Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, have already indicated support for changing the rules. They’re not alone: Key party constituencies are pledging to withhold support for Democrats who do not back filibuster reform. The movement has been as striking among incumbents, including those from tough swing states. Ultimately, every Democratic senator except Manchin and Sinema voted to change the filibuster rules in an attempt to pass the party’s twin voting-rights bills last night. That level of agreement seemed very much an uphill climb one year ago.

If Democrats lose unified control of Congress in November, it’s not clear when they will regain it and the power to implement their new consensus on retrenching the filibuster. But it is clear that Manchin and Sinema are holding to a position that leaves them almost completely isolated in the party. “I think it is very likely they are the last two elected Democrats who support the filibuster,” Eli Zupnick, the spokesperson for Fix Our Senate, a group advocating for filibuster reform, told me. “It is no longer a tenable position to defend the broken status quo.”…

It’s difficult to identify any plausible Democratic senate candidate this year who has not endorsed rolling back the filibuster, at least for voting rights, and many of them for other issues. “It does feel like the world is changing so much that the Manchin stance isn’t going to make sense for anybody, anywhere,” Kristin Ford, NARAL’s vice president of communications and research, told me.

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