Democrats largely cheered the Senate vote Thursday to limit filibusters while Republicans charged it was an attempt by Democrats to shift the focus away from ObamaCare.
Sen. Tom UdallTom UdallStaff shakeup begins at Dem campaign committee Tom Udall eyes NM governor bid Court ruling could be game changer for Dems in Nevada MORE (D-N.M.) said in a tweet “finally, we have reform."
Finally, we have reform-->"Under the precedent set by the Senate today, the threshold for cloture on nominations...is now a majority"— Tom Udall (@SenatorTomUdall) November 21, 2013
In a 52 to 48 vote Thursday, the Senate approved the “nuclear option,” which changes chamber rules, and lessens the minority party’s ability to filibuster presidential nominees.
Edging toward the end of the filibuster, Sen. Jeff MerkleyJeff MerkleyOvernight Energy: Fight over miners' benefits risks shutdown | Flint aid crosses finish line in House Senate sends annual defense bill to Obama's desk Dem senator: Trump’s EPA pick is ‘corruption’ MORE (D-Ore.) tweeted, will help the Senate function better.
Ending the abuse of the filibuster on nominations is a big step toward restoring the functionality of the Senate.— Senator Jeff Merkley (@SenJeffMerkley) November 21, 2013
Some Democrats circulated a graphic based on data from the Congressional Research Service that said 168 presidential nominees have been blocked in U.S. history, 82 of which happened while President Obama was in the White House.
But a slew of Republicans argued Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidReid: Comey should be investigated in wake of Russia report Spokesman: NY Times ignored Reid's comments in pre-election story on Russia Senate passes dozens of bills on way out of town MORE (D-Nev.) invoked the nuclear option to change the conversation.
Did Reid forget Bush’s judicial nominations he filibustered or is his nuclear option threat just a distraction from Obamacare’s failures?— Senator Dan CoatsDan CoatsTrump's Cabinet: What jobs are left to fill Trump narrows secretary of State field to four finalists 2016’s battle for the Senate: A shifting map MORE (@SenDanCoats) November 21, 2013
Americans aren't distracted by Sen Reid’s power grab. We're still seeing health plans cancelled & error messages from http://t.co/nkI2Y330yS— Senator Ron JohnsonRon JohnsonOvernight Regulation: Obama's reg czar under pressure | Fight looms over Trump EPA pick Obama's regulatory czar under pressure to cutoff 'midnight rules' Week ahead: GOP quickly laying groundwork for reg rollback MORE (@SenRonJohnson) November 21, 2013
Roy BluntRoy BluntSanders: GOP blocked 'Trump proposal' to lower drug prices McConnell: We'll start Obamacare repeal on day one Could bipartisanship rise with Trump government? MORE (@RoyBlunt) November 21, 2013
Sad day in the Senate. Ignoring 225 years of precedent, largely to change the subject from Obamacare, is a bad move.— Jeff FlakeJeff FlakeSenators move to protect 'Dreamers' Reid bids farewell to the Senate Reid defends relationship with McConnell in farewell speech MORE (@JeffFlake) November 21, 2013
Make no mistake- this is a fake crisis over judicial nominees to distract attention from the Obamacare disaster and consolidate power. -ogh— Senator Hatch Office (@SenOrrinHatch) November 21, 2013
Unprecedented power grab to try&shift attention from Obamacare brings implications Dems going to have to live w/when GOP retake the Senate— Tim ScottTim ScottSenate GOP: National museum should include Clarence Thomas Senate passes college anti-Semitism bill The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE (@SenatorTimScott) November 21, 2013
Sen. Richard BurrRichard BurrTop Intel Dem: Congress 'far from consensus' on encryption Trump must be an advocate for the Small Business Administration Dems pledge to fight Sessions nomination MORE (R-N.C.) said the Senate vote will threaten bipartisanship.
Unprecedented power grab by majority threatens bipartisanship, the Senate, the nation.— Richard Burr (@SenatorBurr) November 21, 2013
“There are no rules,” Sen. John McCainJohn McCainSchumer calls for Senate probe into Russian interference Ukrainians made their choice for freedom, but now need US help White House orders intelligence report of election cyberattacks MORE (R-Ariz.) tweeted, quoting the late Sen. Arthur Vandenberg (R-Mich.) in 1949, if a majority of the Senate can change the rules at any time.
As Senator Arthur Vandenberg said in 1949: If a majority of the Senate can change the rules at any time, "there are no rules" #nuclearoption— John McCain (@SenJohnMcCain) November 21, 2013
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla.), chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, applauded the move in a tweet.
Kudos to my Senate colleagues on their vote. It's insane that nearly 1/2 the filibusters of nominees have been during Obama years.— D Wasserman Schultz (@DWStweets) November 21, 2013