OpinionMeister

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Bolton Up-or-Down Vote More Likely

The Associated Press reports that Sen. Boxer has dropped her hold on the Bolton nomination, clearing the way for a debate and vote. Link.
On Tuesday, Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., decided to drop her plan to use procedural delays to prevent the debate on Bolton from beginning, according to spokeswoman Natalie Ravitz. Her decision came after conferring with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee's top Democrat, Joseph Biden of Delaware, and after the resolution of a sharply partisan battle over Senate filibusters that has seemed to take some of the wind out of the opposition to Bolton.

Democrats said they have not ruled out a procedural tactic to postpone a vote, but several said it is unlikely.

"There is no desire for a filibuster," said Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn.

I still think that, on balance, the judicial filibuster deal was a net negative, but at least there are some positives coming out of it. I have often read about one senator putting a "hold" on a nomination, but I have yet to see a good description of the exact procedure. Perhaps it is time for a thermo-nuclear option - a senate rule change to abolish the hold. It is bad enough that 40 senators can kill a nomination. It is a whole lot worse that one senator can indefinitely delay a nomination,.

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