"If we had a serious effort to talk about the national debt in this week of recess that has been canceled, we would be convening the budget committee today and asking them to report a budget on the floor for the first time in almost 800 days," he added, noting that no such plans were scheduled.
Corker spoke after Wicker's remarks and said that while Libya is an important issue, it is "totally irrelevant" to the much larger issue of reaching some agreement on the debt ceiling.
"The issue of the day is our debt ceiling," Corker said. "I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to vote 'no' this evening for cloture. Let's not take up an issue that will have no effect on, that has nothing to do with the debt ceiling, and let's move to those kinds of issues that will."
The Senate plans a 5 p.m. cloture vote that would allow the Senate to proceed to the Libya authorization bill, S.J.Res. 20. Assuming the vote fails to garner the needed 60 votes, the Senate may next take up a bill from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) that calls for tax increases on people earning more than $1 million per year.