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With all the talk about McCain or Graham or Ayotte putting a "hold" on a possible Susan Rice nomination as Secretary of State, it begs several questions:

1)  What steps can the Democratic Senate leadership take to lift or overturn such a "hold?"

2)  Any other parliamentary maneuvering that can defeat such a hold?

3)  If the filibuster reform comes to pass (cross fingers!!)  does THAT afford a route to circumvent a hold?

....because if there ISN'T a way around the hold, does that effectively derail her nomination??

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Comment Preferences

  •  I think they can get around if they have (7+ / 0-)

    60 votes.

    Some of the comments by Ayotte/Graham/McCain are postuing. I think one of them said they put a hold on ANY SOS nominee, which is just ridiculous.

    •  Actually, it might be a majority (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I'm not sure.

      I read an article yesterday on this, where a Senate Dem aide said the hold isnt really a big deal, because either they have the votes to confirm or they dont.

      •  I did understand that one of the reforms in (0+ / 0-)

        contemplation was eliminating the anonymity of the singleton 'hold', and possibly eliminating it for certain classes of Senate business, of which appointments was one.

        Of course, the non anonymous hold could be used by other Senators to eliminate ALL actions supported by the holder until he or she surrenders.

  •  Let the Republicans stew in the blow back (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    celdd, jazzyjay

    They've already totally maxed out the racist anti-woman vote so it escapes me how this does anything but make them look like the mean poor losers that they are.  They seem to not get that Americans do not vote for people they do not like.  Policy aside, the Republican Party has just become so unpleasant that it creeps people out to be associated with it.

  •  asdf (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    From Wikipedia:

    Holds, like filibusters, can be defeated through a successful cloture motion. However, the time required to bring around a cloture vote often allows fewer than 40 senators to block unimportant legislation when the majority is not willing to force the vote. The countermeasure to excessive holds may be increased determination on the part of the leadership to bring up measures despite holds, but the delay involved in cloture votes constrains the leader's ability to do this.[4]

    Sadly, everything Communism said about itself was a lie. Even more sadly,, everything Communism said about Capitalism was the truth.

    by GayIthacan on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 05:07:50 PM PST

    • need filibuster AND cloture reform?? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The countermeasure to excessive holds may be increased determination on the part of the leadership to bring up measures despite holds, but the delay involved in cloture votes constrains the leader's ability to do this.
      hmmmm, wonder if the "filibuster reform" would also emcompass cloture related matters?
  •  Timing (8+ / 0-)

    Pres. Obama will not nominate anyone until there is clarity on when the current Secretary plans to step down.

    I suspect that will be after New Year's, not before.

    In early January, the new term of the Senate begins, and, with it, the opportunity for Sen. Reid to bring forward the new rules, which will need to be approved—but by a simple majority vote. The hold is part of the Senate rules, as far as I know—there hasn't been legislation that creates it (I believe).

    If the new rules ban stupid, undemocratic, filibusters, then Republicans will find it quite difficult to do their usual mindless blocking of everything they see.

    Exactly how difficult it will be for them to block nominations depends on what is in the new rules.

    •  Exactly (4+ / 0-)

      Holds were already a delay item that's been discussed in the filibuster reform.  By talking about holds now, McCain & Graham & Ayotte are basically begging for it to be in the reform.

      It's rather stunning that they are going to the well on this before the Dems wrap up the reform (either by voting it in, or getting Mitch to blink to a "bipartisan" reform package).  We all know that the GOP was going to fight every nomination of note.  But by making it so obvious to Dem Senators right now, especially on someone like Rice who shouldn't be controversial (relative to the next Fed Chair and the SCOTUS nominations), they're making the Dems look at the nomination problem now.  A smarter course would have been to lay in wait and hope that the Dems in their reform package don't break off nominations for a special treatment separate from Bills.


      The only question is whether the Dems are more dumb and don't carve out nominations.

      There is a very big chance of that since they seem to be delusional enough to believe they'll need the filibuster on a nomination when there's a GOP President down the road.  My general thought is that if Bush wanted Bolton to be UN Ambassador, let Bush don't it an embarrass himself.

  •  Sure (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Karl Rover

    They can be told that none of their pork/special interest/state related bills or amendments will be acted upon.
    The Senate can be forced to stay in session over holidays and weekends - maybe even during the Sunday AM news panel shows.

  •  WP - "This Is Good For John McCain" Again (8+ / 0-)

    Fight over Susan Rice holds political risks for White House

    The choice of a successor to Hillary Rodham Clinton as secretary of state has turned into an unexpectedly nasty political fight that could cost the White House valuable goodwill with Republicans.
    Goodwill with Republicans?? This is still the planet Earth, right?
    •  Unbelievable. So the GOP hissyfit (9+ / 0-)

      will cost the White House valuable Republican goodwill?

      1. What Republican goodwill? There is none to lose.

      2. Why can't this be seen from the flipside, that this hissyfit is costing Republicans the White House's goodwill?

      Our "liberal media" at work again. Everything is always good news for Republicans and bad news for Democrats.

      I'm a dyslexic agnostic insomniac. I lie awake at night wondering if there's a dog.

      by rennert on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 07:33:10 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  To answer... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        bear83, bluezen
        2. Why can't this be seen from the flipside, that this hissyfit is costing Republicans the White House's goodwill?
        Well, the occupant of the White House is Democratic and Black, and so therefore expected to be doubly subservient to the Republicans.
        •  What it may cost them is the WH not agreeing to (0+ / 0-)

          nominate only those judges etc. which are nominated for the purpose or approved by the senators of that state in which the judge etc. would sit. He who holds other nominations gets ignored. And does without judges until  . . . .  the profit of the hold to him or her is eliminated.

    •  WTF? (0+ / 0-)
      valuable goodwill with Republicans

      "I'm totally pro-choice in the matter of abortion. But of course I'm also so radically pro-life that I think every person from birth onward must have full and affordable access to healthcare." - Gail Collins

      by gritsngumbo on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:48:36 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Obama should nomiante her, and let... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FiredUpInCA, sebastianguy99

    the Senate do what they will. The SoS position will sit open until they relinquish the hold, for four years if necessary. Obama is done facing elections, he has nothing to lose.

    We already have a fiscal cliff. We can add a diplomatic one.

    "It's almost as if we're watching Mitt Romney on Safari in his own country." -- Jonathan Capeheart

    by JackND on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 06:34:34 PM PST

    •  If he really wants her as SoS, just (5+ / 0-)

      nominate her and if the Senate fails to confirm, make a recess appointment. I'm sick of playing pussyfoot with these Republicans asses.

      I'm a dyslexic agnostic insomniac. I lie awake at night wondering if there's a dog.

      by rennert on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 07:34:05 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  as long as... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Christy1947, bluezen, Ian S

        it's her. It's unfortunate if Kerry wanted it, but in the wake of the McCain maneuvering he's a nonstarter now. He absolutely cannot give them the open Massachusetts seat they want under any circumstances. If he does, my checkbook will stay closed throughout 2014.

        "It's almost as if we're watching Mitt Romney on Safari in his own country." -- Jonathan Capeheart

        by JackND on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 10:49:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  We'd have no SoS for four years? (0+ / 0-)

      This is the person that is supposed to be the chief diplomat that steps in personally to interact with foreign leaders, both allies and enemies and we'd leave the position open for 4 years?  

      I'm not okay with that.....

      Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

      by Wisper on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 05:52:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hillary will stay on (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      until her successor is approved -- at least I assume so and hope so. It's not like the GOP is going to get John Bolton as interim SOS, or a vacant chair that they can use to slam Obama with (or talk to, depending on their preferences).

  •  "Hold" is a Senate rule (0+ / 0-)

    Harry Reid can lead the Democratic Senators to change the Senate rules.  He has to be cautious...some day the Democrats will again be in the minority, and the filibuster and hold rules are there to protect the minority.

  •  Reform the filibuster (0+ / 0-)

    and take this option out of the Republicans' hands.

    Presidential nominees should require a simple majority vote.


    Filibuster reform now. No more Gentleman's agreements.

    by bear83 on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 09:06:24 PM PST

  •  I am waiting to see the Rs filibuster on the first (0+ / 0-)

    day until the second day, and then contend it is too late to change the rule. All forty five of them would cooperate in that.

  •  Easy. (0+ / 0-)

    Just eliminate the fillibuster and all the baggage that goes along with it once and for all.

    It was an accident in the first place, a mistake in the rules...made at the dawn of the 19th century...that nobody noticed for for another 35 years.

    It doesn't protect minority rights in the way we think of them...and frankly, a body where the smallest 25 states have just as much weight as the largest 25 is already unrepresentative enough.

    So far as preserving it for our future use...does anybody really believe the current incarnation of the Republican Party won't eliminate at the first opportunity when they are someday in the majority?

    "I don't give them Hell. I just tell the truth about them and they think it's Hell."

    by Notthemayor on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 11:33:06 PM PST

  •  Can the President use an (0+ / 0-)

    Executive Order....which of course will bring on the pearl clutching and fainting couches.....

  •  Public shaming and embarrassment (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Vince in KcK

    We know which three Senators are acting as the attack dogs on this. I don't know about McCain and Graham, but Ayotte should be subjected to a public campaign -- and NH voters should be feeling feisty enough to do it. And with an all-female delegation and Governor, NH could do it without charges of sexism.

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