McConnell tees up Tuesday highway vote
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellTrump: McConnell 'helpless' to stop Biden from packing court Senate GOP opens door to earmarks McConnell sidesteps Trump calling him 'dumb son of a b----' MORE on Thursday set up lawmakers to start their work on federal transportation funding, scheduling a procedural vote for Tuesday.
The Kentucky Republican set up a Tuesday afternoon vote on ending debate on a motion to proceed to a House-passed bill that would allow businesses to exclude some veterans from ObamaCare's employer mandate. That bill is being used as the Senate's vehicle to pass the highway legislation. 
"Let me just say to all senators, we're making progress on the highway bill, and we're setting the vote for next Tuesday to allow the bipartisan supporters of a longer-term bill a couple of days to complete the draft of the substitute," McConnell said. 
Inhofe said on Wednesday evening that he expects senators will be able to quickly pass a long-term highway bill. 
"I anticipate that we will have actually passed in the next few days ... a long-term, maybe a six-year highway reauthorization bill," he said. 
The House passed a five-month extension of federal transportation funding, but senators have been working on a longer six-year bill. 
Inhofe said that based on conversations he's had with House lawmakers, he believes they'll "be very excited over there that we're going to have, and have the funding for a six-year bill."