The Democratic-controlled Senate today voted to invoke the so-called nuclear option out of frustration over Republicans who have been blocking President Barack Obama’s nominees.
The controversial move is a rules change that could make a partisan environment even more divisive because it takes away the right for the Senate’s minority party to filibuster.
Under the old rules it took 60 votes to break a filibuster. The change now allows most filibusters of Obama nominees to be stopped with 51 votes — a simple Senate majority.
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TALKING POINTS MEMO
By Sahil Kapur
Mitch McConnell met privately on Tuesday with House Republicans in an attempt to stiffen their spines and preserve the party’s leverage in the next government shutdown fight.
The Senate minority leader urged GOP members, including committee chairmen, who arevoicing strong concerns with the painful military cuts under sequestration to hang tough and stand by the austerity spending level of $967 billion.
“I wish the budget conference well, but I do hope that at the end of the day we’ll support the Budget Control Act. It’s the law of the land,” McConnell told reporters afterward. “It sets out [spending] caps to be achieved. We know that it’s been highly successful. We’ve reduced for two years in a row for the first time since the Korean War. I think it’s a bad idea to revisit a law that is actually working and reducing spending for the government. Within those constraints, I wish them well. … I hope they will comply with the law.”
By Tim Curry, National Affairs Writer, NBC News
Harry Reid (D-NV), United States Senator from Nevada and Majority Leader of the United States Senate (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Washington is deadlocked as it enters the 14th day of a partial government shutdown that has already led to furloughs of 350,000 federal workers, canceled military training missions and slowed economic growth. Now, the United States is just days away from losing its ability to borrow money and faces the prospect of defaulting on its bonds.
Following multiple talks between Republican congressional leaders and President Barack Obama over the past two weeks, the negotiations are now focused on Senate leadership from both sides of the aisle. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell launched last-ditch negotiations over the weekend to end the spending and debt stalemate, but they may not be able to reach an agreement that can pass both the House and Senate.
First on CNN: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has turned down a Russian request to meet to discuss Syria, his office says, making it unclear if any U.S. lawmakers will sit down with a planned delegation from Moscow.
This comes less than a day after House Speaker John Boehner rejected a similar request from the Russian government.
A spokesman for the Russian embassy would not comment on the declined requests. “We are still working on the visit,” Maxim Abramov said.
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“You are not going to believe this. Did you hear what Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell just said about one of the most respected women in American history leading the Democratic ticket in 2016?
He called it, and I quote: “A rerun of the Golden Girls.” Seriously?
Now, this is not some fringe element of the GOP talking. This is the top Republican in the U.S. Senate — who, I might add, is five years older than the woman he mocked. And we cannot let it stand.
Let’s send the message to Mitch McConnell and his allies: This is 2013, not 1913.
Let’s fight back against the GOP’s outrageous comments and policies by defeating them in this election.
Let’s do it today.” [Quote]
CLICK IMAGE ABOVE
The sour senator above is Mitch McConnell. He is minority leader in the Senate and he has used the filibuster over 300 times to block Senator Harry Reid who is Majority Leader of the Senate. It is Harry who should be making news as he guides legislation through that body and into law. Mitch McConnell failed decisively in his personal and party war on Barack Obama. Although the President won the election, Mitch labors on unchanged.
HEY, MITCH: WE WON THIS!@#!
Mitch McConnell runs for re-election in 2014 and may be opposed by activist Ashley Judd. Please urge her to run. In the meantime, join me as I shine a light on Mitch McConnell to keep everyone abreast of Mitch’s bad behavior and encourage them to fight the continued use of the filibuster in the Senate. You can click the link on the menu above or click HERE to read my latest newspaper, “Shining a Light on Mitch McConnell.” PLEASE SUBSCRIBE TO GET A DAILY COPY IN YOUR INBOX. THANKS!