Democrats argued that Davis-Bacon saves money in the long term by preventing "low-ball" contractors from underbidding on contracts and building unsafe infrastructure. Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay RockefellerJay RockefellerObama to preserve torture report in presidential papers Lobbying world Overnight Tech: Senators place holds on FCC commissioner MORE (D-W.Va.), who is managing the FAA authorization bill, argued that the current law simply requires wages that are comparable to others in the region, and does not necessarily increase wage rates.
The Senate tonight also approved an amendment to the FAA bill from Sen. Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseDems introduce MAR-A-LAGO Act to publish visitor logs Under pressure, Dems hold back Gorsuch support The Hill’s Whip List: Where Dems stand on Trump’s Supreme Court nominee MORE (D-R.I.) that would allow fines and prison terms to be imposed on anyone who aims a laser pointer at aircraft. This was a non-controversial amendment and passed easily in a 96-1 vote. Only Paul voted against the Whitehouse amendment.
The Senate is slowly getting to a backlog of more than two dozen amendments to the FAA bill. Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidThis obscure Senate rule could let VP Mike Pence fully repeal ObamaCare once and for all Sharron Angle to challenge GOP rep in Nevada Fox's Watters asks Trump whom he would fire: Baldwin, Schumer or Zucker MORE (D-Nev.) said tonight that the Senate would continue working on amendments and hopes to finish early in the week of Feb. 14.
Reid also said only those amendments directly related to the FAA would be considered, and said more votes can be expected Monday night and Tuesday morning. After that, Senate Democrats have a retreat scheduled that will take up the rest of next week.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellThis week: GOP picks up the pieces after healthcare defeat The Memo: Winners and losers from the battle over healthcare GOP senators pitch alternatives after House pulls ObamaCare repeal bill MORE (R-Ky.) praised Reid's handling of the FAA bill so far, and said it is being handled the way bills were handled "in the old days." Democrats have said they would consider amendments in pairs, one from Democrats, and one from Republicans.
Reid said the votes on the two amendments tonight are the last votes of the week in the Senate.