Reid Pushes End-Game on Senate Immigration Debate
On Friday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid used his privileges to cut off the amendment process and push the "Gang of 8" bill to a final vote. Reid's move sets up a vote Monday on an amendment sponsored by Sens. Corker and Hoeven. After that, Reid can push for a vote on final passage of the "Gang" bill later in the week.
Reid filed for "cloture" on the new Corker-Hoeven amendment to the "Gang" legislation. Senate aides have told Breitbart News that the amendment is expected to be well over 1,000 pages long and is intended to replace the current legislation, as well as provide new border security provisions, as well as other unknown measures.
Reid has used an archaic Senate procedure and has filled the amendment "tree", meaning that after the Corker-Hoeven amendment is considered, and likely approved, no other amendments may be offered on the bill. Reid will then file for a "cloture" vote on the overall bill, which would likely take place Wednesday or Thursday.
“The Corker-Hoeven amendment is designed to help pass the bill but not to fix the bill or fix the problem,” Sen. Dave Vitter said in a statement.
According to Senate aides close to the discussions, the Corker-Hoeven amendment is now expected to contain special interest provisions designed to secure the votes of various U.S. Senators. Aides have told Breitbart News that those writing the Corker-Hoeven amendment “is going to be filled with kickbacks and buyoffs."
Vitter stressed this concern. “I’ll be going through the text, but there may be some Obamacare-style buyoffs included in the language. We must ensure that real enforcement is in place, working, verified BEFORE any amnesty happens."
Approving cloture on the Corker-Hoeven substitute amendment will require 60 votes. At that moment, Reid can file for cloture on the underlying bill. That will also require 60 votes. Sens. Corker and Hoeven have provided the critical cover to pass the "Gang's" legalization bill out of the Senate.