The filibuster is a tactic that has been used in the United States Senate for years. It allows a minority of senators to delay or block legislation by speaking for as long as they wish. However, in the early 20th century, the use of the filibuster began to increase, with senators using it more frequently to prevent the passage of bills.
In response to the growing abuse of the filibuster, the Senate voted to limit its use by adopting the cloture rule on March 8, 1917. This rule allowed the Senate to end a filibuster by invoking cloture, which required a two-thirds vote of the senators present and voting. The adoption of the cloture rule was a significant development in the history of the Senate. It marked the first time that the Senate had taken a formal step to limit the use of the filibuster.
However, the rule was not used very frequently in the early years after its adoption. It was not until the 1960s and 1970s that the Senate began to use the cloture rule more frequently to end filibusters. In 1975, the Senate further revised the cloture rule by reducing the required number of votes from two-thirds to three-fifths of the senators present and voting.
Today, the cloture rule remains an important tool for limiting the use of the filibuster in the Senate. However, it is still possible for senators to delay or block legislation through other means, such as placing holds on bills or using other parliamentary tactics.
Overall, the adoption of the cloture rule was a significant moment in the history of the Senate and helped to limit the use of the filibuster. This tactic is still used today to block bills that have support from fewer than 60 senators.