Filibuster, the use of delaying tactics, used most often by the Opposition, in a parliamentary body. Opposition filibusterers speak as often and as long as possible, raising many points of privilege and order to prevent votes they expect to lose. Their aim is to kill the government's bill or motion, to create the impression that chaos reigns, or to cause an election - possibly all 3. Filibustering is also resorted to by the government, and is used effectively to resist the Opposition's proposals, eg, in "talking out" a bill. The length of a filibuster, or even whether one has occurred, is a matter of opinion. Generally accepted examples of filibusters in Parliament include the CPR bill, 1881; the Manitoba remedial bill, 1896; the reciprocity bill, 1911; the naval bill, 1913; the PIPELINE DEBATE
, 1956; and the FLAG DEBATE
, 1964. The CLOSURE
rule was introduced to end the naval bill filibuster.
See also ALLOTMENT OF TIME.
JOHN B. STEWART