Senate Dems to push Obama nominees
WASHINGTON — Fresh from shackling the traditional blocking ability of the Senate's minority party, Democrats are ready to muscle through President Obama's nominees for pivotal judgeships and other top jobs.
Despite a Democratic power play in November, Senate Republicans retain the power to slow, though not derail, Obama's appointments.
Left unchanged were other rules that the out-of-power party could use to grind the chamber's work to an excruciating crawl. That ranges from requiring clerks to read voluminous bills and amendments to forcing repeated procedural votes.
“There are so many ways of slowing things down in the Senate,” said Robert Dove, the Senate's former longtime parliamentarian.
Monday will start a two-week, year-end Senate session in which Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., hopes to finish work on a modest budget deal, a Defense bill and other lingering items.
Monday's meeting will be the chamber's first since irritable lawmakers left town on Nov. 21 for Thanksgiving break. Earlier that day, Democrats used their 55-45 edge to reshape how filibusters work, changing the number of votes needed to halt procedural delays against most nominations from 60 to a simple majority.
Democrats could make GOP delays as painful as possible, such as keeping the Senate in all night and on weekends.
“We're going to seek to achieve as much as we possibly can and hope Republicans will cooperate with us, instead of just using knee-jerk obstruction,” said Adam Jentleson, spokesman for Reid.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pirates show depth in earning victory over Rockies; Polanco has big night
- Healthy, confident Steelers LB Shazier ready for full speed ahead
- Paving, electronics upgrades evident at Steel Valley
- Timing drives former KHL star Plotnikov
- Pirates notebook: Catcher Cervelli among ejection leaders
- Pirates notebook: Hurdle mulling rotation options
- ATI picket injured at Harrison mill
- Historic WWII-era landing ship tank docking at Heinz Field
- Cops nab 4 in Monessen drug hangout
- Despite being suspended, Boyd still making contributions for Pitt
- LaBar: The upgrade of The Wyatt Family in WWE