Senate Fails To Invoke Cloture On Defense Bill With DADT Repeal
For the second time, the Senate has failed to achieve the 60 vote margin needed to invoke cloture and proceed to debate on the bill that includes repeat of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell:
The Senate has turned down the attempt to move to final debate and votes on a defense bill that would repeal “don’t ask, don’t tell.” The vote was 57-40, three short of the 60 needed.
Senator Harry Reid, the majority leader, called a key procedural vote on repeal of the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy despite having failed to reach agreement with Republicans to proceed.
Republicans havdindicated that without an agreement about the number of amendments and the timing of the debate, they would vote against moving forward to vote on the legislation.
Mr. Reid conceded that that the failure to reach an agreement could doom the effort to repeal the policy, which has been a key priority for President Obama and gay activists.
“Despite the critical importance for our troops, for our nation, and for justice that we get this bill done, we have not been able to reach an agreement,” Mr. Reid said this afternoon. “And I regret to say that it is our troops who will pay the price for our inability to overcome partisan political posturing.”
Mr. Reid’s decision to move forward in an attempt to force a vote caught senators off guard, including Republican Senator Susan Collins of Maine, who had been negotiating with Mr. Reid about the terms of the debate.
It’s possible that they could try this a third time, but the Senate is currently schedule to leave town next Friday so time is incredibly short.
I’d also note that this would be a good time to take a look at my post about filibuster reform.