Reid Threatens To Push Senate Session Past Christmas

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) speaks to the press following the Democratic Caucus Luncheons on Capitol Hill in Washington on December 14, 2010. Reid said he would keep the Senate in session for as long as needed in order to finish their work on the tax bill, appropriations, DREAM Act, 9/11 legislation and Don't Ask, Don't Tell.  UPI/Kevin Dietsch Photo via Newscom

They’re going to be there until they’re done, says Reid, and he still has an aggressive list of controversial bills he wants addressed.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid warned Tuesday he’s willing to bring the Senate back after Christmas to resolve unfinished business in the lame-duck session.

“I hate to report all this to you, but there’s still Congress after Christmas,” Reid told reporters. “So if Republicans think because they can stall and stall and stall and if we take a break, we’re through — we’re not through. Congress ends on Jan. 4, so we’re going to continue working on this stuff until we get it done.”

Meanwhile in the House, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said unfinished business may spill into next week, though he’s “hopeful” the House will wrap up by the 18th. “Hopeful is not a synonym for optimism,” he added.

The House still has to vote on the tax-cut bill, a ban on the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, and a resolution to fund government agencies.

Reid ticked off a number of priorities he would like to address before this congress officially ends in January: The START Treaty, the DREAM Act, the repeal of “don’t ask don’t tell” and other legislative matters.

What I don’t understand is why we’re accepting that this Congress has a mandate to address any of these issues. We just had an election that changed the makeup of Congress considerably. Legally, yes, the new Congress can stay in session until January 4th but given that the people have spoken when it comes to who is and is not in Congress (not to mention who is and is not setting the agenda there) it is absolutely ridiculous to see things pushed out this long.

With the Bush tax cuts deal facing heavy opposition from nearly all sides, and given that the deal itself isn’t a good one, Republicans should vow to gum up the works for the rest of the lame duck and address these issues in the new Congress.

Rob Port

Rob Port is the editor of In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

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  • rickgee

    Did he forget he’s in the Senate???