Democrats use â??nuclear optionâ??

Thursday US Senate Democrats changed filibuster rules concerning Presidential nominees and appointments.

The so-called "nuclear option" means the majority no longer must get 60 votes to stop a filibuster.

They need only a simple majority.

The minority party in the Senate has used the filibuster or the threat of one to stop judicial appointments especially, since the Ronald Reagan administration.

David Rausch, PhD, a political science professor at West Texas A&M University says, "the primary situation theyâ??re working on is to try to fill three positions on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals and thatâ??s one of the last places you go before you go to the U.S. Supreme Courts if itâ??s a governmental policy."

Filibusters concerning legislation are not affected.