Senate Republicans are using a complex parliamentary move this week to unilaterally change the rules to make it easier to confirm lower-level nominees to the federal courts and agencies.

It will mark the third time in less than six years that the majority party pulled the trigger on this controversial procedure, breaking long-standing customs requiring a two-thirds majority to alter Senate rules and procedures…

If one side is willing to “go nuclear” just to more quickly confirm the assistant secretary of Commerce — that’s the nomination that will start the process Wednesday — some Senate majority leader in the not too distant future seems certain to push to eliminate the 60-vote threshold so they can pass a major legislative proposal.

That would eliminate the last vestiges of what’s left of the filibuster made famous by Jimmy Stewart in “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.”