GOP allows Reid's 'millionaire tax' resolution to advance in Senate

That move likely seemed hostile to some Republicans who intended to alter the legislation. Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), who voted against the measure, had suggested earlier in the day that he was looking forward to taking advantage off the amendment process.  

"When it passes tonight we will have permission to add amendments to the sense of the Senate resolution, maybe,” he said.  “In other words we can amend the opinion of the Senate that cannot be law. How long will we amend and debate an opinion?”

Reid commented, however, that he would be willing to work with his Republican counterpart, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), to ensure that Republicans could file relevant amendments if they had them. 

Eighteen Republicans voted for the bill, while 26 voted against it. Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) was the only Democrat to vote no.

Reid originally put forward the proposal on Tuesday of last week as a way to meet Republican demands to begin considering bills related to the debt ceiling and budget deficit.

Since Reid offered the resolution it has become a favorite punching bag for Republicans who have derided it as a waste of the Senate's time.

Enzi, for example, also attacked the underlying resolution calling it a "sham" and publicity piece.

"At this juncture more than ever we don't need publicity pieces," said Enzi from the Senate floor. "Even if it passed it would not have the force of law." 

The legislation will face another 60-vote hurdle later this week before it can see an up or down vote.