NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Thursday, January 24th, 2019

U.S. Senate fails to advance legislation to reopen the federal government

As expected, the Republican-controlled Senate failed today to advance a bill to reopen the federal government, although six Republicans did break ranks with Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell to support the Democratic proposal:

A pair of measures to reopen the government — one with Trump’s border wall, the other without it — failed in the Senate on Thursday, sending lawmakers from both parties into frenzied efforts to forge a compromise that could end the nearly six-week partial shutdown.

In back-to-back votes, the Senate first blocked Mr. Trump’s proposal to add $5.7 billion for his border wall to legislation to resume funding for the government, then turned back a Democratic measure that omitted the wall. Neither side was able to garner the sixty votes needed to advance its bill.

The Trump/McConnell plan failed with a vote of fifty to forty-seven, falling ten votes short of the sixty vote threshold needed to advance.

The roll call from the Pacific Northwest was as follows:

Voting Aye: Republican Senators Mike Crapo (ID), Steve Daines (MT), Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan (AK)

Voting Nay: Democratic Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell (WA), Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden (OR), Jon Tester (MT)

Not Voting: Republican Senator Jim Risch (ID)

One Democrat crossed over to vote for the Trump/McConnell plan: Joe Manchin of West Virginia. Republicans Rand Paul and Jim Risch missed the vote, as did Democratic Senator Jacky Rosen of Nevada.

The Democratic plan then failed with a vote of fifty-two to forty-four.

The roll call from the Pacific Northwest was as follows:

Voting Aye: Democratic Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell (WA), Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden (OR), Jon Tester (MT); Republican Lisa Murkowski (AK)

Voting Nay: Republican Senators Mike Crapo (ID), Steve Daines (MT), Dan Sullivan (AK)

Not Voting: Republican Senator Jim Risch (ID)

The Republicans who voted for the Democratic plan were Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Mitt Romney of Utah, Cory Gardner of Colorado, and Johnny Isakson of Georgia.

Thom Tillis of North Carolina, who had previously called for reopening the government, voted against the Democratic plan to do so, siding instead with Trump and McConnell. Tillis is considered to be one of the more vulnerable Republicans up in 2020, and his vote of solidarity with Trump might come back to haunt him.

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