Reid had indicated on Tuesday he would allow just one amendment to the Patriot Act reauthorization. Paul, who opposes the Patriot Act, had prepared 11 amendments to the bill and began attempting to mire the legislation in the Senate's arcane rules by every means available.

Before adjourning at 7:44 p.m. Reid noted it had been a long legislative day saying it was "a pleasure" to adjourn the Senate. The Senate on Wednesday engaged in a full-pitched battle over the Patriot Act and voted down four budget proposals for fiscal year 2012.

The Senate is scheduled to return at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday.