Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

In Which Harry Reid Throws Down

Posted by Phoenix Woman on July 18, 2007

big-hammer.jpg

 (As Bartcop says:  Use the BIG Hammer!)

More like this, please:

Ratcheting up the stakes in the wake of the GOP’s successful blocking of a vote on Iraq withdrawal just moments ago, Harry Reid just announced on the Senate floor that he won’t allow a vote on the entire Defense Authorization bill until the Senate GOP drops its filibustering of votes on Iraq.

Here’s what Reid had to say on the matter:

I have temporarily laid aside the Defense Authorization bill and have entered a motion to reconsider.

But let me be clear to my Republican colleagues – I emphasize the word “temporarily”. We will do everything in our power to change course in Iraq. We will do everything in our power to complete consideration of a Defense Authorization bill. We must do both.

And just to remind my Republican colleagues – even if this bill had passed yesterday, its provisions would not take effect until October.

So we will come back to this bill as soon as it is clear we can make real progress. To that end, I have asked the Democratic Whip and Democratic Manager of the bill to sit down with their counterparts to work on a process to address all outstanding issues related to this bill so the Senate can return to it as soon as possible.

Here’s why it’s a big deal:

What this means is that Reid isn’t allowing any votes on any other Iraq amendments — not the toothless Warner-Lugar amendment, not the Ken Salazar amendment that would force adoption of the Baker-Hamilton plan, nothing.

Fellow TPM reporter Spencer Ackerman also says that Reid’s move is very significant in another way:

Because the Pentagon’s priorities won’t become law until a Defense Authorization bill is passed, the Pentagon’s fiscal 08 priorities won’t get funded until this standoff is resolved — and Reid is insisting that won’t happen until the GOP allows a vote on the Iraq withdrawal measures.

More soon.

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