“I hope between now and January cooler heads ... will prevail, and we will put ourselves back on a path to finding bipartisan solutions to our nation’s most pressing problems,” Johanns said.
Blunt said his goal is to find enough Democratic skeptics of the process that supporters call the “constitutional” option to cause both sides to step back and engage in negotiations.
“That’s why we elect a leader and they elect a leader,” he said, signaling that he would like to see Reid work out a deal with Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
“There is growing concern on their part,” Blunt said of Democrats, adding that some up for re-election may not want to defend the “nuclear option.” Several Democrats have already expressed reservations about a simple majority plan, including Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin of Michigan.
Former Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., candidate for U.S. Senate in New Hampshire, holds his hand over his heart during the singing of the national anthem as he waits to take the stage for his town hall campaign rally with Sen. John McCain at the Pinkerton Academy in Derry, N.H., on Monday, Aug. 18, 2014.