The Senate's reached an agreement to hold a key procedural vote on disapproving of the Iran deal Thursday afternoon.
After dueling objections over vote thresholds for a final passage vote on the resolution that would disapprove of the international agreement with Iran regarding its nuclear development, senators agreed to move up a debate-limiting cloture vote to 3:45 p.m.
Before accepting the proposal, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said the vote to break a filibuster of a substitute amendment that contains the text of the disapproval measure should be construed as the substantive vote on either supporting or opposing the Iran deal. Reid wanted to move to final passage with a 60-vote requirement. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., had pushed for a simple majority.
"By rejecting our offer, the Republican leader has made the cloture vote the decisive and definite vote, and it's definitive in nature on this issue," Reid said.
A total of 42 members of the Democratic Conference have announced support for the Iran deal, which is one over the threshold of votes needed to prevent limiting the debate (and thus ensuring the agreement goes through, even without a veto by President Barack Obama).
"What a tragedy it would be then if, at the very last moment, some of those same senators decided to filibuster to prevent the American people from having a real say on this incredibly important issue. I know some of our colleagues are currently under immense pressure to shut down the voice of the people," McConnell said. "But I ask colleagues to reflect on the gravely serious nature of the issue before us."
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