Senate Dems discuss emerging deal

The Senate voted largely along party lines on Sunday afternoon to block legislation crafted by Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidChris Murphy’s profile rises with gun tragedies Republicans are headed for a disappointing end to their year in power Obama's HHS secretary could testify in Menendez trial MORE (D-Nev.) that would raise the debt limit by $2.4 trillion.

Reid and other Democratic leaders worked intently to persuade centrist Republicans to support the plan but fell short.

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The vote to end a GOP filibuster failed 50-49. Only Sen. Scott Brown, a centrist Republican from Massachusetts, defied the GOP leadership.

Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinOvernight Energy: EPA aims to work more closely with industry Overnight Finance: Lawmakers grill Equifax chief over hack | Wells Fargo CEO defends bank's progress | Trump jokes Puerto Rico threw budget 'out of whack' | Mortgage tax fight tests industry clout Lawmakers try again on miners’ pension bill MORE (D-W.Va.), Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) and Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersChris Murphy’s profile rises with gun tragedies Clip shows Larry David and Bernie Sanders reacting after discovering they're related For now, Trump dossier creates more questions than answers MORE (I-Vt.) voted against Reid's plan, as did Reid himself in a procedural move that allows him to bring it back to the floor.

Sen. James InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeA third of Congress hasn’t held a town hall — it’s time to take action Anonymous affiliate publishes claimed list of GOP private contact info Wasting America’s nuclear opportunity MORE (R-Okla.) was the only senator to miss the vote.

Lawmakers say they have been told the president and GOP leaders are closing in on a deal and expect one as soon as Sunday.

Reid had told colleagues shortly after noon that he was cautiously optimistic about the negotiations.

"We are close to an agreement with Republican leaders," he said. “[A]fter speaking to Republican leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGun proposal picks up GOP support Children’s health-care bill faces new obstacles Dems see Trump as potential ally on gun reform MORE (R-Ky.) this morning, we are cautiously optimists.”

Senators will wait for a bipartisan deal to be finalized and then will begin work on advancing it to the House.

Reid signaled to colleagues that they could begin moving it as soon as Sunday.

“I would not suggest [going to] a ball game,” said Reid from the floor to some laughter. “Maybe closer than that.”

“But we'll give everyone adequate notice,” the majority leader assured members.

Democratic senators joined Reid Sunday afternoon for a special caucus meeting to hear about the status of negotiations with GOP leaders on the latest compromise attempt.

Senate leadership emerged from the meeting shortly after 4:35 p.m. The senators did not comment on their discussions.

When asked if a vote was possible on Sunday evening, Reid said "I hope so."

If any senator decides to object and drag out proceedings, Congress will not make the Aug. 2 deadline set by Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.

A Democratic aide said that if conservatives filibuster the deal, the soonest it could pass the Senate would be Wednesday.

Senate conservatives however say they don't have plans to delay consideration of a possible bipartisan debt-ceiling agreement. 

Sen. Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeWhatever you think the Alabama special election means, you’re probably wrong How the effort to replace ObamaCare failed Overnight Regulation: Trump temporarily lifts Jones Act for Puerto Rico | Bill would exempt some banks from Dodd-Frank | Senators unveil driverless car bill MORE (R-Utah), a member of the Senate Tea Party Caucus, said he would insist that any compromise receive at least 60 votes on the Senate floor but not drag out the process to delay an agreement beyond Tuesday.

Reid is expected to use a message from the House as the legislative vehicle to pass a deal through the upper chamber.

But doing so would still require the Senate to spend Monday, Tuesday and part of Wednesday processing it unless every senator agrees to truncate the timeline.

A stopgap measure may be necessary to allow the government to pay its bills after Aug. 2. But such a Band-Aid would need to receive unanimous consent to pass by Tuesday.

This story was posted at 1:38 p.m. and has been updated.