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Reid Calls Kyl ‘Sanctimonious’

Bill Clark/Roll Call

 

Majority Leader Harry Reid lashed out at Minority Whip Jon Kyl on the Senate floor Wednesday afternoon, accusing the Arizona Republican of being “sanctimonious” with his complaints about working during the Christmas holiday season.

On Tuesday, Kyl accused the Nevada Democrat of “disrespecting one of the two holiest holidays for Christians” by scheduling work days for the Senate on Christmas Eve and potentially the week after Christmas.

Reid said Wednesday that Kyl had “the nerve to whine about actually staying and doing the work the American people pay us to do” and accused Republicans of putting themselves above average voters who work during the holidays.

People “basically every place have to work hard during the holidays to support their families. ... It’s offensive to me and millions of Americans across this country for any Senator to suggest working through the holidays is sacrilegious or disrespectful,” Reid said.

Kyl has been a chief opponent to taking up the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty this year, saying the Senate needs more time to debate the pact. 

“Where was the concern about Christmas during filibuster after filibuster? ... Senate Republicans need look no further than themselves for the predicament we’re in right now,” Reid said angrily during his Wednesday floor speech, pointing to the scores of filibusters and other delay tactics the GOP has used to tie the Senate in knots over the past two years.

Reid also pointed to Sen. Jim DeMint’s (S.C.) plan to force the reading of START and the omnibus spending bill as examples of GOP stall tactics. 

“Isn’t that wonderful?” Reid said sarcastically.

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