The Senate will welcome its newest member, Scott Brown (R-Mass.), as soon as the legal paperwork is received, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Tuesday.

Reid said that the Democratic-held Senate would swear in Brown as soon as legally practicable.


"The people of Massachusetts have spoken," Reid said in a statement. "We welcome Scott Brown to the Senate and will move to seat him as soon as the proper paperwork has been received."

The statement comes as Democrats will now be forced to consider how to move forward with healthcare reform now that Republicans have enough votes to sustain a filibuster in the Senate.

Some lawmakers had talked about rushing to pass health reform legislation before Brown could be seated, which could take at least 10 days under Massachusetts state law for certification.

Reid acknowledged the challenges ahead, but called on Republicans to renew efforts toward bipartisanship.

 “While Senator-elect Brown’s victory changes the political math in the Senate, we remain committed to strengthening our economy, creating good paying jobs and ensuring all Americans can access affordable health care," Reid said. "It is now more important than before for Republicans to work with us rather than against us if we are to find common ground that improves Americans’ lives.”