Reid affirms the secret to filibuster success is a ‘strong bladder’

Alexis Levinson Political Reporter
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WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid affirmed Thursday morning that the key to long filibuster, like the one conducted by Sen. Rand Paul on Wednesday and into Thursday, is really about how long can you go without using the bathroom.

To hold the floor while filibustering, a senator may not exit the chamber, meaning he or she may not use the bathroom. This is why, in the wee hours of Thursday morning, Paul finally concluded his filibuster after 12 hours and 52 minutes.

“I would go for another 12 hours to try to break Strom Thurmond’s record but I’ve discovered that there are some limits to filibustering, and I’m going to have to go take care of one of those in a few minutes here,” Paul said to laughter from his fellow senators while yielding the floor early Thursday morning.

When the Senate reconvened Thursday morning, Reid acknowledged his colleague from Kentucky’s feat.

Quoting Paul’s concluding remarks, Reid said that he himself had been involved in a few filibusters, and that he had learned from that experience an important lesson: “to succeed you need strong convictions, but also a strong bladder.”

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