Senate Republicans are considering taking the rare step of enacting a rules change to disable Democrats' ability to block Supreme Court nominees.
The option has not been utilized since 1975. It is so likely to divide the Senate along the strictest of partisan lines that in Washington parlance it is being referred to as �going nuclear.�
Nevertheless, Republicans are increasingly intent on taking such action if Democrats utilize filibusters to block Supreme Court nominations, likely to begin as soon as next year. . . .
[C]hanging the Senate rules to require an up-or-down vote, 51 senators, would disable what little influence Democrats maintain over judicial appointees. Currently, a filibuster -- when senators speak on the floor to delay congressional action -- can only be ended with a supermajority, 60 senators� support.