Reid tells Vitter to stop blocking drug bill

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) called on a few Republicans Wednesday to stop blocking a bipartisan compound drug bill.

“This is not a contentious issue,” Reid said on the Senate floor. “It would pass by a wide margin in mere moments if not for stall tactics of a few Republican senators.”

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On Tuesday, the Senate voted 97-1 to proceed to considering the Drug Quality and Security Act, H.R. 3204, which would make it easier to trace drugs throughout the U.S. supply chain.

Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), who was the only “no” vote Tuesday, is delaying progress on the bill in an effort to get an amendment vote on his Show Your Exemption Act, which would force members of Congress to disclose which members of their staff they have exempted from enrolling in the ObamaCare health insurance exchange.

The House easily passed H.R. 3204 in September. Reid said that if Vitter forces the Senate to run out the clock on every procedural vote, the bill wouldn’t pass until Sunday.

“If all the time is required on procedural issues, we won’t be able to finish the bill until Sunday,” Reid said. “It’s time to dispense with this noncontroversial measure, this life-saving measure … and move on to other important legislative priorities.”

Reid has said he wants to finish work on the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) before Thanksgiving, even if it means weekend seasons.