Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
July 30, 2015

Senate Tax Cut Vote: Republicans Filibuster $85B Bill

The procedural gridlock continued in the Senate Thursday. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Senate Republicans filibustered a tax cut package Thursday, causing procedural gridlock. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Senate Republicans filibustered an $85 billion tax cut package after Democrats refused to allow votes on their amendments.

Cloture on the tax cut measure failed 53 to 40. It needed 60 votes to advance. Illinois Senator Mark Kirk was the only Republican to vote yes.

The grab bag of more than 50 tax breaks, which expired at the end of 2013, includes breaks for research and development, mortgage forgiveness and the deductibility of state and local sales taxes.

Republicans have increasingly complained that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., has been using his authority in a dictatorial way.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Democrats had turned the Senate “literally on its head” by refusing to allow amendments, and proposed voting on all tax-related amendments to the bill.

“What are they afraid of?” McConnell asked.

Reid refused, ripping McConnell as the “guardian of gridlock.”

The pair also sparred over Reid’s support for a constitutional amendment restricting spending on campaigns.

“Now they want to change the Bill of Rights,” McConnell said. “Apparently after a couple hundred years they’ve decided that Madison’s work is not sufficient.”

Just prior to the vote, Sen. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, predicted that cloture would not be invoked on the tax extenders bill at this point because there have not been sufficient discussions about amendments.

“I don’t think it’ll be far enough along,” Grassley said. “Cloture won’t happen.”

At a news conference before the vote, Reid appealed to interests who would benefit from more than 50 tax breaks in the package.

“I would hope that … the business community, who stand to benefit greatly from this extenders package, I would hope they say something to the Republican senators,” he said.

Reid earlier dismissed GOP critics, saying Republicans too often seek to offer unrelated amendments.

“I’ve already said we will be allowed to have amendments but [they] have to be related to the bill … but they want to offer them on everything,” Reid said. “I think it’s just outrageous that they are going to try to kill thing on this phony issue.”

The measure also has drawn criticism from the White House.

Steven T. Dennis contributed to this report.

Comments (58)

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  1. Lawrence

    May 15, 2014
    4:30 p.m.

    The only bill people care about is EUC. Immigration and Keystone is all about lacing dollars in the GOP and Dems pockets

    • mrmano_0

      May 15, 2014
      7:59 p.m.

      democrats are completely responsible.for this unemployment extension mess. Harry reid prevented the extension from being added to the budget. Democratic Senators whittled the Republican proposal down to 5 months from the 12 month months Republicans originally proposed.

      Harry reid has kept millions of Americans from the help they desperately need and deserve.

      That’s all Democrats that have created this misery…….

      • LumberJock

        May 16, 2014
        11:38 a.m.

        What drivel. republi-can’ts and dixie-canz have never done ANYTHING for anyone who isn’t a fellow traveler on the path to oligarchy.
        You simpletons aren’t allowed a unique set of facts on issues.

        • mrmano_0

          May 17, 2014
          9:15 a.m.

          Democrats using plight of veterans to further their rage against the unemployed…and…then killing them in VA Hospitals…where is obama??…OBAMA HATES VETERANS!!!…Reid takes his marching orders from someone..

          http://www.theblaze.com/storie

          • Billy Goodendorf

            May 19, 2014
            6:59 p.m.

            mrmano.you’ve proved you’re an idiot. But do you have to prove it continually to prove it with the same exact crap five times!

      • sandcanyongal

        May 31, 2014
        1:44 a.m.

        The reason for the “unemployment mess” is obvious. Since 1977 American job have been outsourced, sold off by division, by company, b-1, h-1 visas to people from other countries. Every single industry and job title that was once an American job is now a Chinese, Indonesian, Indian, or some other job. Americans have been reduced to mere consumers without disposable income, elbowing out college kids for the McDonalds jobs.

        http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/washington-whispers/2012/08/08/firms-may-save-money-by-hiring-foreign-students-with-military-specialties-over-us-citizens

  2. ShadrachSmith

    May 15, 2014
    4:39 p.m.

    Re: the picture

    Two old men shouting, “Try and make me!” back and forth at each other. Our government at work :-)

  3. Oak Ridge Curmudgeon

    May 15, 2014
    4:55 p.m.

    Apparently Harry’s supply of Cornhusker Brand Kickbacks is way too low…

  4. pitch1934

    May 15, 2014
    6:44 p.m.

    Mr. McConnell seems to forget that there have been quite a few Amendments made to this Constitution of ours. Madison and the others did screw a few things up, like 3/5 of a person, etc.

    • JerzeyGeorge

      May 15, 2014
      7:38 p.m.

      Madison and the others screwed Nothing up. The Document was drafted at a time when European views and values were still the norm.
      The Founders success was the Document itself provided the very means to change injustices. Harry Reid is talking out his backside as usual as he plays the, “you can only vote on what I want game”.

      • LumberJock

        May 16, 2014
        11:45 a.m.

        missymcconnell’s delay, deny & denigrate procedure requires multiple amendments that are irrelevant, irreverent, immaterial, incongruent and not germaine. delay and gingrich invented this strategy in the house and it has found a place in the pseudo-harts of republi-can’ts and dixie-canz.
        Check with your handler. He may have paid your toll-to-troll on a site more in line with your intellectual bent.

        • mrmano_0

          May 17, 2014
          9:14 a.m.

          Democrats using plight of veterans to further their rage against the unemployed…and…then killing them in VA Hospitals…where is obama??…OBAMA HATES VETERANS!!!…Reid takes his marching orders from someone..

          http://www.theblaze.com/storie

          • LumberJock

            May 25, 2014
            7:41 p.m.

            Obama is his own man. Moe’n we can say for you. You’re merely a kock-bros shill.

    • jb willikers

      May 15, 2014
      10:18 p.m.

      Check your history as to what the 3/5 was about. it may surprise you.

    • mrmano_0

      May 17, 2014
      9:12 a.m.

      Democrats using plight of veterans to further their rage against the unemployed…and…then killing them in VA Hospitals…where is obama??…OBAMA HATES VETERANS!!!…Reid takes his marching orders from someone..

      http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2014/05/16/democrats-odd-legislative-strategy-backfires-on-veterans/

  5. mrmano_0

    May 15, 2014
    7:59 p.m.

    democrats are completely responsible.for this unemployment extension mess. Harry reid prevented the extension from being added to the budget. Democratic Senators whittled the Republican proposal down to 5 months from the 12 month months Republicans originally proposed.

    Harry reid has kept millions of Americans from the help they desperately need and deserve.

    That’s all Democrats that have created this misery…

    • LumberJock

      May 16, 2014
      11:47 a.m.

      Check your shoes and keyboard for the source of the crap you’re peddling.

      • mrmano_0

        May 17, 2014
        9:15 a.m.

        Democrats using plight of veterans to further their rage against the unemployed…and…then killing them in VA Hospitals…where is obama??….OBAMA HATES VETERANS!!!…Reid takes his marching orders from someone..

        http://www.theblaze.com/storie

  6. docb

    May 16, 2014
    8:16 a.m.

    Gop bag criminal acts, as usual…Shameless little old white male slime buckets.

    Call them out..

    1.866.3381015 or 1.866.220.0044

  7. mrmano_0

    May 17, 2014
    9:11 a.m.

    Democrats using plight of veterans to further their rage against the unemployed…and…then killing them in VA Hospitals…where is obama??…OBAMA HATES VETERANS!!!…

    http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2014/05/16/democrats-odd-legislative-strategy-backfires-on-veterans/

  8. Jon Johnston

    May 21, 2014
    11:15 a.m.

    Adam Smith’s claim that collectivism unleashes evil is well supported by the history of dictators who have claimed that society’s well-being depends upon its subjugation.

  9. Nathan Jessup

    May 22, 2014
    7:32 p.m.

    While some Western success has been due to capital, the liberty that unleashes its citizens’ ingenuity and courage has been more important.

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