Harry Reid blows it again
Just as we saw on the Senate votes on taxes during the lame-duck session, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) led his party over the cliff on spending cuts. On the Senate Democrats' paltry package, Reid could round up only 42 votes. (He has 53 Democrats). Reid lost 11 votes on his side: Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Kay Hagan (D-N.C.), Herb Kohl (D-Wis.), Carl Levin (D-Mich.), Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), Ben Nelson (D-Neb.), Bill Nelson (Fla.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Mark Udall (D-Colo.) and Jim Webb (D-Va.). You can tell that the Nelsons, Kohl and McCaskill are nervous about re-election.
On the Republican spending cuts, the Republicans did even better, grabbing 44 votes. No Democrats voted for the Republican package . Playing to the gallery and the Tea Party, Sens. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah), all voted no. As least we know who is serious about governing.
Reid has demonstrated that he doesn't have a majority -- not by a long shot -- for his do-not-much-of-anything approach to spending. So as soon as Biden gets back from his travels, he can oversee those budget negotiations. I'm guessing the final number will be closer to $61 billion than to $4 billion. Republicans have more votes, after all.
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