Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.) sent a "dear colleague" letter to fellow senators Thursday urging them to reject using the reconciliation process to pass this year's budget.

Byrd told fellow senators that using reconciliation to pass the budget "would violate the intent and spirit of the budget process, and do serious injury to the Constitutional role of the Senate."

Touting his role as one of the authors of the reconciliation process, Byrd blasted the use of the process to pass tax cuts, climate change legislation, and especially healthcare reform.

"Matters that affect the lives and livelihoods of our people must not be rushed through the Senate using a procedural fast track that people never get a chance to comment upon or fully understand," Byrd wrote. "I urge Senators to jealously guard their individual rights to represent their constituents on such critical matters as the budget process moves forward."

View Byrd's letter (courtesy of TPM) here.