Thursday: Guns in the Senate, cyberattacks in the House

One after another, the Senate turned away proposals on background checks, an assault weapons ban, banning high-capacity clips, preserving gun rights for veterans, and other ideas (scroll down to see the wreckage). Sixty votes were needed on all of these amendments, and none reached that threshold.

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The failure of these key amendments does not bode well for passage of the bill itself, which is S. 649, the Safe Communities, Safe Schools Act. Nonetheless, the Senate will start work at 9:30 a.m., and around noon will try two last amendments, from:

— Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), to withhold federal funds for states that disclose gun owners' information, and

— Sens. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) and Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) to expand federal mental health programs. This bipartisan proposal probably has the best chance of passage.

After caucus lunches, the Senate will hold a vote at 2 p.m. on two judicial nominations. They are Analisa Torres to be a U.S. District Judge for the Southern District of New York and Derrick Watson to be United States District Judge for the District of Hawaii.

The House will start legislative work at 10 a.m., and will consider up to seven more amendments to H.R. 624, the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act. This bill is aimed at letting companies share information about cyber threats with the government.

A key concern among opponents is that the bill might give the government access to private consumer information. Republicans on Wednesday agreed to vote on language meant to assuage people that this will not happen — among other things, it directs civilian federal agencies to set up entities to receive this information from companies, so that it does not go directly to the military.

The House is expected to pass the bill sometime in the early afternoon, after which it will be done for the week.

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