I spent the evening last night at the Senate watching the historic debate between the Democrats and the GOP about ending the Republican filibuster to the Levin-Reed bill which will start to bring the troops home. I’ve never been to the Capitol past midnight, it was kind of cool.
There is some great coverage on all-night session around the internet and blogosphere.
Image from Kim Hunter:
The strategy for this maneuver is pretty clear; drive press coverage and force the Republicans to have to pay some sort of price for their obstructionism on Iraq. It was becoming conventional wisdom that every vote took 60 Senators to pass in the Senate instead of a filibustering being an extraordinary event. This was meant to address that problem, and we’ll see how the coverage is tomorrow.
Funny, just as I’m citing Stoller, he appears…he’s so web2.0
As we hit midnight, Harry Reid requested a quorum call. Because there wasn’t a quorum, the Senate is now conducting a roll call vote on a motion to instruct the Sergeant at Arms to request the attendance of absent Senators. That means 51 Senators have to show up — or the Sergeant at Arms can go get them. This forces some of the GOP Senators to be in the chamber. And, they should be. Filibustering the Iraq war votes is their idea.
Washington Post: Senators Pull All-Nighter For Debate On Iraq War
Democrats rolled out cots and ordered pizzas as they settled in for a marathon Senate debate on Iraq last night that featured numerous speeches but little chance of getting any closer to resolving the stalemate over how to end the war.
Republicans were determined to block legislation forcing a withdrawal of combat troops, which was expected to come before bleary-eyed senators this morning in the nonstop session. Republicans dismissed the Democrats’ overnight effort as political theatrics and vowed to enforce a 60-vote threshold for passing the withdrawal proposal, which would bring most troop homes by May.