CNS News is reporting that a group of 21 House members have sent a letter to all GOP Senators, warning them against a cloture vote on the Continuing Resolution. A vote on cloture would give Senator Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) the ability to remove the defunding Obamacare provision included in the CR. The House conservatives who signed the letter stated that they consider a cloture vote the same as a vote in support of Obamacare.
“it is highly likely that Majority Leader Harry Reid will move to amend the House-passed CR and remove the language from the bill that defunds Obamacare before sending it back to the House.
“As you are also aware,” the conservatives wrote, “such a motion can only proceed if three-fifths of the Senate invokes cloture and allows this amendment process to begin. Simply put, the only chance that Senator Reid has to pursue this course of action is if six or more Republican Senators join the Democrats in voting to invoke cloture.
“Therefore,” the House conservatives said to every Republican senator, “it shall be our policy to regard any cloture vote that gives Senator Reid a green light to reinstate Obamacare into this CR the same as a vote for Obamacare itself.”
The cloture vote will come today and requires 60 votes. It will allow debate to end on the Continuing Resolution and proceed to toward a final vote. Reid controls 54 votes, while the GOP has 46 so should the Senate GOP stand together the cloture vote would be stalled. According to Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-OK), who authored the letter, “until Harry Reid guarantees a 60-vote threshold on any amendment including his amendment to add back Obamacare” the Senate GOP should vote against cloture. Otherwise a simple majority of the Senate could vote to continue Obamacare funding.
It is unlikely Reid would use the Senate rule requiring 60 votes on amendments to the CR.
Signers of the letter include: Dave Schweikert (R.-AZ), Charles Boustany, M.D. (R.-LA ), Rep. John Culberson (R-TX) (R.-TX ), Rep. Steve King (R-IA) (R.-IA), Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL) DVM (R.-FL ), Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) (R.-KY), Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R-GA) (R.- GA), Jack Kingston (R.-GA), Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-SC) (R.-SC), Paul Broun M.D. (R.-GA ), Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL) (R.-FL), Michele Bachmann (R.-MN), Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ) (R.-AZ), Steve Stockman (R.-TX), Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) (R.-TX), Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC) (R.-NC), Rep. Scott Garrett (R-NJ) (R.-NJ), Rep. Scott Perry (R-PA) (R.-PA), Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) (R.-NC), Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) (R.-KS).
Signatures are still being gathered.