Political
KUTV.com | Stories - Senate Nears Deal on Stalled Nominees
Tuesday, July 16 2013, 09:34 AM MDT
Senate Nears Deal on Stalled Nominees
By Ted Barrett and Dana Bash

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Senators have reached a tentative bipartisan deal to avert the so-called "nuclear option" -- a controversial rules change in the Senate -- sources in both parties told CNN.

At issue is what Democrats call unnecessary, lengthy delays of seven of President Barack Obama's nominees being filibustered by Republicans.

The deal would lift the filibusters and allow confirmation votes, but in exchange Democrats would agree to withdraw two nominees to the National Labor Relations Board. Obama put them in office during a period when he says the Senate was in recess. The president would nominate two different candidates for the board.

Sen. John Hoeven, R-North Dakota, told CNN that was the key to the deal.

Republicans disputed the appointments of Sharon Block and Richard Griffin, and the Supreme Court agreed to take up the case.

The NLRB, which hears and rules on labor disputes, is one of the most politically polarized institutions in Washington.

CNN reported Monday about secret weekend talks that formed the basis for this deal between Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada. An aide to Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, says he too was heavily involved in the negotiations.

On the Senate floor Tuesday morning, Reid said a deal was near.

"We still have a few more I's to dot and T's to cross," Reid said. "It is a compromise. I think we get what we want, they get what they want."

He also praised McCain for his pivotal work in crafting a deal, "even at his own peril." The two engaged in quiet negotiations over the weekend and got close to an agreement.

Tuesday's development comes after senators failed to reach a deal on avoiding the confrontation -- a partisan threat by Reid that would change the rules on filibusters.

After a nearly four-hour meeting stretching late into Monday night, senators said no deal was reached, though many left Capitol Hill with a sense that a solution would be found soon.

The Senate votes Tuesday morning to proceed with two Cabinet member nominees and five appointees to agency posts. Republicans have stalled the confirmation process for months.

While Democrats control the Senate, they don't have the 60 votes necessary to break a GOP-led filibuster. Reid would use the "nuclear option" to change the rules in order to prevent filibusters of executive branch nominations, allowing them to be confirmed on a simple majority vote of 51.

The Nevada Democrat has been warning Republicans that if they continue blocking some of Obama's Cabinet and agency picks, he will make the drastic move without their consent. Such a move would bring sharp opposition from Republicans, who have threatened to block other legislation as a consequence.

At issue is a disagreement over three of the nominees -- two for the NLRB and one to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. They were tainted in the minds of Republicans because they originally had been nominated as "recess appointments" by Obama -- even though senators said they were in session.

Republicans have remained steadfast against confirming them until the Supreme Court decides if the recess appointments were constitutional, something the high court is considering.

Should the Senate go ahead with the nuclear option, the poisoned atmosphere could stall passage of several important items moving through Congress like tax reform, judicial nominations, government spending bills and a debt ceiling increase. Even a relatively modest rewrite of student loan laws could be in jeopardy, meaning students headed to school this fall would have to pay higher interest rates.

CNN's Ashley Killough, Lisa Desjardins and Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.
Senate Nears Deal on Stalled Nominees

News Photos & Videos - Submit Your Photos Here


More Political Stories

Poll: Kentucky Voters Split on a Potential Rand Paul Presidential Campaign
Georgia Governor Signs Gun Law
Zing! Christie Knocks Letterman for Fat Jokes, Backs Colbert
Rules Change Means More Drug Offenders Eligible for Clemency
Scarborough Making Another New Hampshire Appearance
Mitt Romney's New Starring Role
Meet the Woman Who Could Turn Texas Purple
Boogeymen and Shady Deals Define Spin for Senate
Obama Begins Asia Tour with Reassurance to Japan
Meet the Woman Who Could Turn Texas Purple
McCain Calls Russia a Gas Station
Another N.J. Bridge Controversy Brewing, and a Familiar Name Surfaces
Is Justin Bieber Getting Special Treatment?
Warren Repeats She's 'not Running for President'
Millions Slip Into Obamacare 'Coverage Gap'
High Court to Hear Dispute About TV Over Internet
Obamas Open up South Lawn to Eager Children for Easter Egg Roll
Baucus Casts Wide Shadow Over Montana Senate Race
Kansas Speech by Michelle Obama Draws Complaints
Spokeswoman: Sebelius Not Considering US Senate
Chris Christie, Prosecutor Appear at Same Event
Prop 8 Lawyer's Views on Gay Marriage Evolving
Obama Praises Biden, But Doesn't Endorse for 2016
Arkansas Voter ID Law Challenged in Court by ACLU
Defend 'Obamacare' Unabashedly, Some Democrats Say
Landrieu Faces Her Toughest Political Storm to Stay in Senate
Big Bucks an Indicator of Outside Groups' Influence
Mitt Romney Stars in Campaign Ad
House Democrats' Committee Sitting on $40M Fund
Sen. Ted Cruz: Too Early to Worry About 2016
Obama, Biden to Announce Millions for Job Rraining
Landrieu Touts Fight for Oil and Gas Jobs in New Ad
These Races Will Determine Control of the Senate
Feds Charge Woman in Hillary Clinton Shoe-Throw
Will Chelsea Clinton go Into The Family Business?
US Senator McCain Mocks EU's Russia Sanctions
Michelle Obama -- and First Dogs -- Visit Military Families on Walter Reed Campus
2016 Watch: O'Malley Heads to Nevada
First on CNN: Christie's Interview with Investigators
Obama Marks Holy Week, Reflects on Kansas Shooting
Hillary Clinton to Address International Jewish Group
2 Congressmen Have Questions in Jill Kelley Leak
Paul Ryan to Iowa GOP: Give up 'Infighting' for Lent
Sebelius' Resignation and the Politics of Obamacare
Rand Paul: Hillary Clinton 'as Bad or Worse' Than President Obama on Government Surveillance
Occupy activist's police-assault trial opens in NY
Democrats Top GOP Last Month in Senate Cash Battle
Political Drama "Camp David" Chronicles Messy Path to Peace
Hagel: Russia Causing Itself Long-Term Harm With Ukraine Steps
GOP Blocks 'Paycheck Fairness' Bill in Senate
Bill Clinton on Snowden: An 'Imperfect Messenger'
Army's Ban on Deadlocks; Other Styles Seen as Offensive to Some African-Americans
Sharpton Denies Any Wrongdoing in FBI Informant Role
Alan Gross, Held in Cuba for Four Years, Launches Hunger Strike
Husband on Kissing Congressman: 'He Has Wrecked my Life'
Farewell, Archie: Beloved Comic Book Character to Die
U.S. Navy Ship to Arrive in Black Sea by Thursday
Huckabee Back in Iowa
Many Doubt 1964 Civil Rights Act Could Pass Today
First on CNN: Graham Opponent Has Impressive Fundraising Haul
Advertise with us!

Washington Times

Washington TimesThe Washington Times - Politics, Breaking News, US and World News.

Click Here for more!


 

Pay It Forward
Fresh Living
Family Matters
Road Trippin
Hooked On Utah

Advertise with us!