A senate rule change championed by outgoing Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid could leave Democrats powerless to stop any of President-elect Donald Trump’s cabinet appointments.
In 2013, Sen. Reid and other Democrats pushed forward with a rule change dubbed the “nuclear option” to eliminate filibusters for all presidential nominations except Supreme Court justices. This means that a simple majority of 51 votes instead of 60 votes is necessary to confirm executive office appointments.
The Republicans are set to enter 2017 with at least 51 senators and can gain another seat with a likely win in the December senate run-off race in Louisiana.
So while Democratic National Committee interim chairwoman Donna Brazile has called for the senate to reject Trump’s nomination of Republican Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions as attorney general, Trump’s cabinet will get confirmed as long Republicans vote along party lines.