Senate Republican Conference Chairman Rick Santorum (Pa.) said he urged his fellow GOP leaders Monday that they needed to pivot to legislative issues once the nuclear option is triggered. Specifically, the Pennsylvania Senator said the GOP could focus its efforts on passing the Defense authorization bill as well as legislation to overhaul the nation’s energy policy and the highway bill.
“Three things: bing, bing, bing that we need to move to once we get through the issue of judges,” Santorum said.
“This so called nuclear option is off the table,” Reid said at a news conference flanked by four of his leadership deputies. He would later add, “The checks and balances have been protected.”
Reid referenced the Supreme Court in his remarks suggesting it had been protected from the “radical right wing.” Democrats were especially fearful that if Frist had successfully triggered the nuclear option then it would be easy for Republicans to stack the nation’s highest court with conservatives.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.