Reid promises to move Defense authorization bill

“We have wasted months and months because of obstructionism,” Reid said. “We are trying to find time to do lots of things.”

Republican Sens. John McCain (Ariz.), Kelley Ayotte (N.H.), Lindsey Graham (S.C.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) had argued in a colloquy, just moments before, that Reid ought not to hold up the funding bill, which cleared committee by strong support, over a single provision he or President Obama oppose. 

“I always believe these issues were to be resolved through debate,” McCain said.

Reid threatened last month to keep the entire 2012 Defense authorization bill off the Senate floor over the detainee issue, because it includes a provision that would clear the way for indefinite detentions of suspected al Qaeda members and similar groups. The provision ensures that terrorism suspects are kept out of the civilian court system and instead held in military custody while awaiting their trials.