Senate Dems call up new debt-ceiling bill

It was not immediately clear why Reid called for a vote on this motion, other than to collect senators that might not hold any votes until Thursday at this point. The new bill is expected to be read Wednesday, but otherwise the Senate is expected to be in a state of morning business for much of Wednesday, and could discuss Reid's "Sense of the Senate" resolution to increase taxes on people earning more than $1 million a year.

A vote on Reid's bill is now expected Thursday as well.

The introduction of a new debt-ceiling proposal came after a day of heated debate in which Republicans complained that they showed up for Senate business today after their Fourth of July break was canceled, but none of it had to do with the pressing items of the debt ceiling or the budget. After several of these complaints, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) agreed to drop plans to hold a procedural vote on a resolution authorizing military action in Libya.

Reid also said the Senate would take up his sense of the Senate resolution on high earners, S. 1323. But Republicans mocked this bill Tuesday as a non-starter in the House and a bad idea at a time when the U.S. economy is still struggling to regain its footing.

In a meeting with reporters, Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) chastised Senate Democrats for failing to bring up anything meaningful on these issues.

"Unfortunately, this latest sense of the Senate is totally non-binding," she complained. "It is really just a political stunt on behalf to the majority leader.  

"We are done with political stunts," she added. "What we need is real leadership and real leadership means that we are ready to roll up our sleeves and get together and put together legislation that is going to reduce spending and bring us to a balanced budget."

—This story was updated at 8:06 a.m. Wednesday to note that the sponsor of the bill is Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.).

Josiah Ryan contributed.