Reid calls on GOP to agree to appoint budget conferees

On Monday, no GOP members were present to object, so Reid said he would wait to ask unanimous consent again until a GOP senator is on the floor.

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Reid criticized Republicans for saying they want to return to regular order yet then refuse to appoint conferees.

“For two years, Republicans longed for the days of regular order. We know because they told us so,” Reid said on the Senate floor Monday. “We gave it to them. … Since they got what they wanted, their interest in regular order has not just waned — it disappeared.”

The Senate passed its first budget resolution in four years last month. Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) have been meeting about setting up a conference, but Democrats say the House GOP is dragging its feet.

The House-passed budget cuts $4.6 trillion in spending on top of the $1.2 trillion sequestration cuts already scheduled to take effect, and it balances in 10 years.

The Senate-passed budget has $975 billion in new taxes, does not balance, and turns off sequestration.

Erik Wasson contributed to this article.

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