UPDATED AND REVISED: Remember the “debt deal” maneuver written by Republican Senator Mitch McConnell, that many of us groused about? It laid out the terms for how the debt ceiling would be raised, and it gave the House and the Senate the opportunity to vote on a ‘resolution of disapproval,’ in other words, it gave the opportunity, through a vote, to turn down raising the debt limit.
Under the process, lawmakers in both the House and Senate must vote on a resolution of disapproval against the increase in the borrowing limit. President Barack Obama would then have to veto the resolution of disapproval, and Congress would then vote to try and override that veto…
There was a twist in this scenario Thursday evening, however. Democrats held firm, rejecting the resolution of disapproval, thereby speeding the process and increasing the borrowing limit immediately.
Only Sen. Ben Nelson (D., Neb.) broke from his party to vote with the Republicans in trying to move forward with the measure.
When I first read this story, I thought perhaps Senate Democrats refused to allow the vote on the “resolution of disapproval,” but finding another article from The Hill makes it clear that there was a vote and votes for ‘disapproving’ numbered only 45 with 52 votes against “disapproving.
Under the debt-ceiling agreement reached in early August, the Obama administration was authorized to immediately raise the debt ceiling by $400 billion. Another $500 billion increase was authorized this month, although that could have been blocked if both the House and Senate approved resolutions expressing disapproval.
Earlier in the day, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) threatened to hold the Senate open for up to 10 hours Friday to “dispose” of the resolution if it moved forward.
The Senate resolution, S.J.Res. 25, was introduced by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and had 24 co-sponsors.