On Monday, Republican Senators shattered a 60-year precedent by blocking a critical defense bill. The senators noted that more time was necessary to consider various amendments to the bill, particularly an amendment regarding a Russian fuel pipeline.
Though the annual National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) has passed the Senate over the past 60 years consecutively, though Republican legislators refused to advance the enormous measure at the start of the week, notably through refusing to even provide the ten Republican votes necessary to even start the debate.
Only one GOP senator, Susan Collins (ME), voted in favor of moving on to the measure.
Prior to the vote, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY) claimed that legislators should contemplate an amendment to place sanctions on entities associated with the construction of the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline running to Germany, which will richly benefit Vladimir Putin, the President of Russia.
Apparently, President Joe Biden requested for Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (NY) to remove an amendment that would have imposed the aforementioned sanctions. Schumer allegedly removed several other GOP amendments related to national security.
McConnell criticized Schumer’s decision to remove several amendments, noting that “the safety of the American people is at stake,” which is “more important than political timetables or partisan wish lists.”
Due to the GOP Senators’ refusal to move forward, Schumer may be unable to pass substantial legislation prior to the end of the year. In addition, Congress is also tasked with passing an extension of federal government funding, as well as an increasing its borrowing limit.
Schumer had previously declared that the Democrats would pass Biden’s $1.75T welfare bill by Christmas.
However, the Majority Leader is now forced to negotiate with McConnell in order to compromise on various amendments that will open up a means for Republicans to advance the NDAA measure, which pertains to policy and spending for the military branches.
“We hope that Republican dysfunction will not be a roadblock to passing this bill and taking care of our troops and their families,” Schumer commented primly, noting that he’s already told “certain members” of the Senate that they “can’t get certain amendments.”
“Not everyone can have every amendment they want,” Schumer concluded primly.