Republicans blocking highway bill for 'political reasons,' says Reid

"Republican leaders have wasted almost a month of the Senate's time obstructing this valuable measure for political reasons, obviously," said Reid in his opening volley from the Senate floor on Monday. 

The highway bill has been pending in the Senate since Feb. 7, when it cleared its first procedural hurdle with a strong 85-11 vote. Since then, however, disagreements about which amendments will see votes and over tax hikes included in the bill have prevented further progress. 

Reid repeated on Monday that the bill would create 3 million jobs and said Republicans ought to get out of its way. 

"If they ended the filibuster and we passed the bill before us it would be a huge step forward," he said. 

Reid ended his speech, however, suggesting that he expects the filibuster will continue. 

"In today's political climate, bipartisan support isn’t enough to keep good legislation alive," he said. "In today's political climate, 85 votes to begin debate on a measure isn't enough to guarantee the measure will become law."