Late Wednesday, two Republicans, Sens. Kit Bond of Missouri and Richard Burr of North Carolina, told FOX News that they will switch their vote and not try to prevent the filibuster. One Democrat who never votes against cloture, Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska, also told FOX News that he will vote “no” this time.
“Enough is enough. There have been seven cloture votes I’ve voted yes on. This is an extraordinary circumstance. But enough is enough. … This clay pigeon is looking like a dead duck,” Nelson said.
That’s 59, kids, if Webb comes through and if Graham and Kennedy et al. can’t flip any of the no’s the other way tonight to make up for the shortfall. But they may have to flip an awful lot, because…
At least nine other senators told FOX News they are undecided or leaning toward a no vote. They include Democratic Sens. Mark Pryor, Jim Webb, Jeff Bingaman, Robert Menendez and Republican Sens. Ted Stevens, Lisa Murkowski, Pete Domenici, Judd Gregg and John Ensign.
The poetic justice of this is that the killer was an amendment offered by Grassley, Obama, and Baucus to loosen the verification requirements on employers. Supposedly, it was the only one of the new “clay pigeon” amendments that the White House opposed because it wasn’t tough enough on enforcement. It came up for a vote tonight and was supposed to be tabled, along with the other 27 amendments — except that the vote to table failed, 45-52. According to Fox, Reid could be heard saying afterwards that he’s “stuck” now.
How delicious if Bush is done in by tools who are even bigger amnesty shills than he is.
Stand by for updates. In the meantime, go see what the Democrats have been spending their time and money on when they’re not busy discovering the fascinating way in which emotional appeals sway human beings.
Update: Here’s what Reid means when he says he’s stuck:
Under Senate rules, Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat, now can’t move to consider other provisions without getting the consent of all 100 senators.
“I think this hurts” the measure, said Texas Republican John Cornyn, an opponent.
Think Jim DeMint’s going to give his consent?
On the other hand, the Bloomberg piece says Webb and Domenici aren’t sure no’s yet but are “leaning” that way.
Update: The process has now reached the level of absurdity where David Vitter and DeMint are pleading with Mitch McConnell to let them read the amendments before voting on them.
Update: We’d better kill it here because suddenly open borders lobbyists are predicting 30 to 40 Republican votes in the House, which would mean Pelosi would have to come up with 180 or so Democrats to pass it. Out of a caucus of 232? Difficult but not impossible.
Update: The boss thinks the reference to talk radio here is a veiled dig at Voinovich’s pathetic turn with Hannity this afternoon. I think he was speaking more broadly, but whichever it is, it’s welcome. And dead on.
Update: It’ll go down to the wire, but it’s looking good: “Top legislative aides in both parties predicted today’s vote would be very close but would fall short of keeping the proposal alive.”
Update: Damn it, Lowry says Webb is going to pull the sham shamnesty two-step. 38 solid no’s right now; only 40 are needed to defeat cloture since only 99 senators will vote (Tim Johnson is still recuperating).
Update: Webb is enjoying teasing people with this crap, isn’t he? “I’m definitely a probably no.”