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 Udall (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 Merkley (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 Reid (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 Coats (@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 Johnson (@SenRonJohnson) 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 Flake (@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 Scott (@SenatorTimScott) November 21, 2013
Sen. Richard Burr (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 McCain (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