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  1. #1
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    May 2005
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    Reid, McConnell open tiny window for compromise during filibuster exchange

    It looks they are planning their next party. JMO

    Reid, McConnell open tiny window for compromise during filibuster exchange

    By David Sherfinski
    The Washington Times
    Tuesday, November 27, 2012

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (right), Nevada Democrat, and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, confer on Capitol Hill in Washington on Tuesday, March 6, 2012, while awaiting the arrival of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Sen. John F. Kerry, Massachusetts Democrat, is at center; Sen. Jon Kyl, Arizona Republican, is at right; Sen. Robert P. Casey Jr., Pennsylvania Democrat, is second from right. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

    A day after a lengthy and caustic exchange over proposed changes to the Senate’s filibuster rules, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell were at it again on the Senate floor Tuesday — though the two did open a tiny window for potential compromise on the matter.

    Mr. Reid confirmed Monday that he plans to push forward with Senate rules changes that would effectively work to curtail Republican filibusters, while Mr. McConnell accused him of trying “to break the rules to change the rules.”

    On Tuesday Mr. McConnell said the right way to change the rules is to have both sides sit down and strike an agreement — and Mr. Reid said he’d be willing to listen to any proposal Republicans would want to put forth.

    “If the Republican leader doesn’t like that … I’d be happy to talk to him,” Mr. Reid said.

    But both sides appear to be far apart.

    Mr. Reid says the problem is Republicans’ delaying tactics. He said they filibuster whether to even begin debating a bill, and then can also filibuster the bill’s passage, too.

    He is proposing eliminating that first chance to filibuster, though he said he’d preserve the minority’s right to filibuster a bill’s final passage. He also said he’d push to make senators have to occupy the floor to conduct a filibuster, which could discourage some of them.

    “The Republicans have made the Senate dysfunctional, and I have asked my caucus to support simple changes,” Mr. Reid said Tuesday, labeling the suggestion that he’s wasting time on the debate “poppycock.”

    Mr. McConnell, though, objects not only to the rules change, but the way Mr. Reid plans to go about it. Mr. Reid would use his expanded majority to push the change at the beginning of next year, on the first day of the new Congress, which is the only time rules can be adopted by majority vote. Most big rules changes are made with a two-thirds vote.

    Mr. McConnell said the move is an indication that Democrats “continue to keep celebrating the election.”

    “The campaign’s over — you guys had a pretty good day; you’re still in the majority,” Mr. McConnell said.

    Early in the 20th century, senators voted to impose a limit on debate in the chamber, but only if two-thirds of the body voted to do so. In 1975, the threshold was changed to three-fifths vote, meaning that virtually any action can be stopped without the support of 60 senators.

    Read more: Reid, McConnell open tiny window for compromise during filibuster exchange - Washington Times Reid, McConnell open tiny window for compromise during filibuster exchange - Washington Times
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