Former U.S. Sen. Claiborne Pell died on New Year’s Day at the age of 90. He is best known for devising what is now called the Pell Grant program that has enabled so many students to attend college. What I remember him for though is that he always voted for cloture, no matter what the issue. When I worked on the Hill, a number of senators did this. It was rare that the Senate would not invoke cloture, and when cloture was not invoked it was a big issue. These days, even routine business is subject to cloture votes and cloture often fails. Cloture votes are often cast along party lines.
This is one case where it really WAS better in the old days.
I spent a lot of time watching bowl games. During the coverage of the Orange Bowl, they said that one of the teams traveled to the first Orange Bowl by steamship. How times have changed! When I watch a bowl I think about the airport in the bowl city and imagine the concourse full of fans wearing their team’s colors as I wrote about in an earlier posting. Steamship travel had some romance to it, but this is a case when it really IS better today than the old days.
By the way, I oppose a college playoff; I think they should scrap the BCS and go back to the old bowl system. They can add a game the week after between the two top teams. That would give you a New Year’s Day (and New Year’s Eve, if needed) full of top match ups. This way USC, Texas and other top teams who feel left out can make their case to play in the final game, all on the same day. This is the idea being promoted by broadcaster Todd Blackledge, and I like it!