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December 14, 2012 at 8:19 pm #15004
Originally, both houses of Congress had unlimited debate. The House moved to its current limited debate early in the 19th century.
The Senate, on the other hand, remained a bastion of endless gabbing until early in the 20th century. At that point, it allowed members to cut off debate by 2/3 vote. The current 60-vote requirement for cutting off debate was adopted in the wake of the 1960s civil rights laws.